This has been a hard few weeks for me. It seems like the longer I go without writing, the more I lack the desire to write. I’ve been praying, pondering, waiting and listening — but I’m still searching for words. I’ve had to surrender this space to Him, at least for this season, knowing that I can trust Him with the desires of my heart. What I write here is meaningless without Him. And so, I continue to press in, to seek His face, to linger in His presence.
A couple of weeks ago I began reading Crystal Paine’s new book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode: 9 Simple Strategies to Stress Less, Sleep More and Restore Your Passion for Life. The title drew me in, because that’s how I feel these days. I don’t want to just survive, I want to thrive. But I know that I have to make changes in my life and to find balance in order to truly function as God has created me. One thing that God is helping me to become aware of through reading this book is that I have no margin in my life.
“Margin is the gap between rest and exhaustion, the space between breathing freely and suffocating.” – Dr. Richard Swenson, Margin: Restoring Emotional, Physical, Financial and Time Reserves to Overloaded Lives.
I want to live a life of purpose. In order to do that, I have to choose wisely where I will spend my time and exert my energies. I need to create margin in my life, so that when I am hit with the unexpected life event or calendar item, there is time enough to deal with it. Right now, don’t even think of adding anything extra, unforeseen or not. There is simply no room.
One of the ways I am beginning to create margin in my life is by simplifying the amount of time I spend on line, as well as the people and pages I interact with.
This has been one of the hardest revelations for me to swallow. But I know that it is needed. I am beginning this process rather slowly, because it’s so hard for me. I am an encourager and I want to encourage everyone. Realistically though, I cannot. So some things will have to change.
Over the next week or two, I will be deleting many of the blogs I follow on Bloglovin. Last I checked, I followed over 200 blogs. OVER 200! No wonder I’m tired. I stopped reading most, only had time to skim the others, and only had energy to leave a few words in a comment. I am giving myself permission to unfollow all of the blogs I followed due to a contest I entered, or the food blogs (whose recipes I never cook), the homeschooling blogs (we aren’t doing well in that area either) or the other blogs that somehow ended up in my reader that have no business being there. Just seeing all of the unread posts is causing me great anxiety.
As a blogger, I want to hold myself to a higher standard. I want to interact with you, get to know you, allow your words to sink deep into my heart and purposefully encourage you on your journey. In order to do that, I must let go. Again, it’s about margin. I am growing more and more exhausted as I try to do it all. If I am ever going to get back to writing, I simply cannot keep going at this pace.
As far as Facebook is concerned, my blog page will remain untouched, and I hope to get more active there beginning in March. As far as my personal page, I have allowed so many people to follow me there, people I never interact with, or who never interact with me. Just seeing their posts come through my wall makes me feel like I need to respond. So, I will be cleaning it up so that it doesn’t appear so overwhelming. I will also be busy deleting pages that I follow that I never get around to reading.
I must create margin in my life so that I can hear His voice. My words, apart from Him, are hallow and empty.
I do not believe God is asking me to stop writing. But I do know that I’m not ready to start writing again at the pace I once was. Not just yet. And while I wait, I am asking Him to give me a new plan — for my writing, for the blog, for this beautiful community of writers that I am privileged to know, and for the next book which is already in draft. I believe He will awaken me to write again, in His timing. I don’t want to get ahead of Him. For now, I will commit to post once a week, for The Weekend Brew, but nothing more. I will read posts that I feel led to read, and do my best to encourage through meaningful comments, where I can.
An opportunity for you!
During my season of rest, I’d love to keep fresh content here. I know we are all busy and I do not want to mess with the margin in your own life, but if you would like to consider writing a guest post during the months of February, March and April, please let me know. I would love to hear your heart on how you create margin in your own life, or any other topic on your faith journey that you’d like to share. Please email me at barbie[at]myfreshlybrewedlife[dot]com and I will get back to you.