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Roles

  • Posted on September 12, 2014 at 10:00 AM

We all assume roles in our lives. We’re parents, children, students, employees, professionals, and more. Some of us are advocates. Whatever our other roles may be, we choose to engage in advocacy in order to change the outcomes we experience and to improve the outcomes others will experience. We want the world to learn from what went wrong in our own lives.

In First Things First, Stephen Covey and his co-authors instruct us that the limits of the mind indicate we can best organize our lives around seven roles, plus the role we owe ourselves, which they call sharpening the saw.

With such a limit, I’ve devised the following roles:

  1. Mother: I will nurture and care for my children, enriching and empowering them to become the people they are meant to be.
  2. Wife: I will build a resilient, satisfying, and loving marriage with my husband.
  3. Builder/Servant: I will rely on my loving Heavenly Father to open the way for me to answer the callings He gives me, while I do everything in my power to build a righteous, faithful life on the Rock of His salvation and to endure well to the end.
  4. Marketer: I will build satisfying, sustaining, long-term business relationships with clients that deliver their products and services with honor and integrity by providing high-quality written and consultative services and by delivering them with honor and integrity.
  5. Writer: I will uplift other writers in such a way that I empower and inspire them to live their dreams.
  6. Advocate: I will build a peaceful and sustaining community of advocates to serve people with neurological differences and disabilities, that the people we serve may be enriched, employed, and empowered.
  7. Student: I will excel in my field(s) of study and earn my degree(s).

There are certainly other roles I could have, but most of those activities would fall under another umbrella. This way I emphasize what is most important for me to do with my time, my energy, and my life.

What are your roles?

Lost In Time

  • Posted on October 1, 2012 at 8:00 AM

We’ve been hit with a lot of difficulties lately, so I haven’t been able to keep up with my workload. I had been trying to decrease my work-related workload, so I could devote more time to writing my book. Unfortunately, not only have the demands on my time due to work not gone down, they’ve increased. With so many unexpected beginning-of-the-school-year demands, I haven’t been able to keep up with those either. And then there’re the household demands, both the typical and the unexpected. I suppose it’s rather obvious that I haven’t been able to keep up with any of them.

When things go smoothly, I can keep up with my regular workload and many of the unexpected demands placed on me. Lately, things have not gone the least bit smoothly. When you’re stretched as thin as you can get, something has got to give. When you’re juggling many things, a lot of things usually have to give.

Because I was trained up in the belief that self-sufficiency and independence are possible, I tend to feel guilty when life gets to be too much for me to handle. My default thinking is that if I were more able, then I would be able to handle everything life throws at me without dropping anything else, and that I should be able to do it effectively and efficiently.

I know this isn’t true. Still, the belief lingers. It’s hard to admit that all these challenges are just too much; it’s somehow easier to believe that I am not doing enough.

I can’t control how much time I have. I get the same 24 hours everyone else does, and I can’t change that. For the most part, I can’t control how much I can accomplish in the time that I have. Sure, I can make myself more productive, but there’s only so much leeway there.

Right now it feels like I’m lost in the limited time I have, with more to do than I can possibly get done, and more people anxiously waiting for me to produce. I live with it, because I can’t see any way out of the situation. I’ve got to catch up and it’ll take as long as it takes. What choice do I have?

But I’m also trying not to feel guilty for my limitations. I will get it all done. I know that. Many of the people I work with know that, too. I just need more time. And I need room to breathe so I can keep working. Guilt is just a waste of energy that will slow me down.

Are you holding onto anything that’s getting in your way? Are you ready to just let it go? Perhaps that sounds overly simplistic. Then again, perhaps it sounds just simple enough.