As I am exiting the tunnel of my busy season at work, I am evaluating how I handled my life over the last six weeks or so. In this evaluation, I don’t think I would give myself a failing grade, but I could not give myself an A or B either. I would probably give myself a low C. In school, I would have been devastated with a grade like that, but in this, it excites me in a way! Why? It is the perfect grade that allows me to see this season as a success while also seeing some easy opportunities for improvement.
Just because things get busy does not mean I get more than 24 hours in a day. Therefore, busy seasons are times to evaluate priorities. Crazy me decided to take on some roles right in the middle of this busy season: mentoring an actuarial intern, co-leading a professional growth committee, and (most time consuming of all) taking on the role of youth minister at my church.
Besides those, I still had my other priorities of being a good husband, a good father, studying for actuarial exams, regularly writing, remaining faithful to my spiritual disciplines, running, and healthy eating habits. All of these are so important to me, and I couldn’t decide which to put on hold. While I had no choice but to fulfill those roles where other people directly depended on me (family roles, work-related roles, etc.), I falsely decided that I just didn’t have the time and energy for the other stuff. For the most part, I quit blogging, running, eating healthy, and keeping up my spiritual disciplines. That is the most disappointing part of this for me.
There is a good side though. While I was weak in those areas, I proved to myself that even in busyness, I could still do things that make a difference. Busyness can either be an excuse or an opportunity. I am an example of both. I was successful in using this as an opportunity to delegate tasks and communicate what my schedule can allow and cannot allow. I used the opportunity to show that if you are really passionate about something (my passion is helping others grow), you can take big steps in furthering that passion no matter how busy you are.
In summary, my goals for next time are:
(1) Define my priorities well.
(2) Refine my time management skills.
(2a) Maximize my time.
(3) Make the most of the psychology of habits and disciplines.
(4) Don’t allow important things to take a back seat; rather redefine what they look like.