How do you balance your mission with your family mission? Obviously helping others learn to teach their children self-government takes a good deal of your time away from your family so I'd love some tips. God has inspired me to reach out more to others and share my talents, but I sometimes find it difficult to find a good balance with my #1 mission of raising my family.
This question is a classic! I love it. What ambitious Mommy doesn't struggle with this?
You are right, I have to pull off quite a balancing act to manage all of my missions.
The family mission is the most important, so I try to schedule everything else around that. I also have to have a lot of patience. Take my book for example. It still isn't done. The reason it isn't done is because I don't have the large blocks of time I need often enough to fit it in all the time. I don't do as well writing in small snip-its when it is a book. So, for now I keep focused while I wait for the right opportunity to finish it.
I have found that being me means having a lot of plates spinning all at the same time. That is just how life is going to be. If I get rid of all the plates then I am being selfish with myself. God put me here to serve people, love people, and raise people, these two jobs require lots of projects. I learned a long time ago while I was doing foster care that those who do do more, can do more. The more projects I do the more capacity I have to do more projects and not become stressed. Don't get me completely wrong, there are still some stressful times. ;)
The trick to having all of these plates is to only spin one at a time. If put into my mind to worry about a clean house while I am trying to get ready to go to a speaking engagement, then I will blow up. So, I concentrate only on getting prepared, for the speaking engagement, and leave the house plate for when I get home. I did this one just today, when I went to speak to a group of great youth in Pleasant Grove, UT. When I got home, my house looked like a bomb went off inside. I changed clothes and switched gears. The clean house plate became first on the list. Then came the read stories to the little ones plate. Then the dinner plate. ETC.
If I tell myself that I am only required to spin one plate at a time, then I am much more at ease. I just always pick the most immediate plate; the one that is just about to fall.
STICK TO TIME BLOCKS: I give myself a certain amount of time in a day to spend either answering emails or answering questions on the blog, and when that time is up, I stop. Don't over do it. Put in what time you have and then have faith that if it really is your mission then God will make up the difference or make it all work out. We often stress when we should just have faith. You will not be given opportunities to do things that you are not able to do, so trust in that.
When I am preparing to teach a class etc, I know that a good nights rest is actually way more important for my performance than reviewing my notes until three in the morning. I learned this the hard way. ;)
SAY NO TO COMPLEX: I come up with tons of ideas all the time for different classes or groups that I am in charge of, but that doesn't mean that I should do all of those ideas. Relationship building and connecting with people, will ALWAYS be more important than any craft you prepare, or any cute display. If you give of yourself, that is enough. If it is not enough, then you are probably focusing on the wrong kind of impact. This is the very reason that I have not yet done a power-point presentation. I only have so much time, and family really MUST come first to me. If they are not first, what am I really doing? All other missions should strengthen your family to some degree.
TAKE A DAY ONCE IN A WHILE: If you never get time to work on that other mission, arrange with your spouse to take a day every month or two to work on it. My spouse knows that I will always be happier if I am fulfilling my other mission too.
YOU WON'T BE THE SAME: If you focus on your family mission and your other mission, you will grow tremendously, you will never be the same again. This is something that can't really be measured until after the fact, but trust me. This is only if you have embarked upon your mission at the right time of course. Let a higher power help dictate your pace.
There is no magic formula to doing all that you feel you need to, but if you really KNOW that the time is now for you to do it, then you have to have faith in your ability, patience in the possible slow progress, and also keep focused while always putting your family culture and happiness first.
Does that make any sense? I hope so. Time to sleep. ~Nicholeen