As I sat down tonight to write, I saw the date of my last post here on my blog, and I was a bit surprised at how long it has been. 37 days! I would ask if anyone missed me, but I might be afraid to hear the answer. I guess we will see what happens when I drop this post!
The last month and a half has been very busy. In truth, 2017 has been busy! It seems like almost every day I crawl into bed with that “Where have you been all day?” feeling. Come on, I can’t be the only one!
The last three weeks have had work training me in Chicago twice and now I am away again to a company retreat and meeting. It seems like this year all of the training was crammed into a very tight little window. A lot of time away from work and home.
Tonight I sit in a hotel room alone. Over the last month I have spent several nights in hotels, and for a few of them I was fortunate enough to have my wife and son with me, but tonight is not one of those nights.
I had my “social” time that we are encouraged to participate in so we can get to know each other and network to exchange ideas and best practices, but I am that guy who steps away from the crowd before things get “really fun” in order to go back to my room for something more productive.
With all of the training I have been to lately, I have been inundated with a boatload of information that has resulted in being motivated to get all kinds of action plans together in order to be a better manager and improve countless processes. The amount of stuff I have before me makes me feel that old weight of performance-based anxiety settle in on my shoulders. I don’t like that feeling…
Also with all the time I have been gone, I have felt the longing for time in my home and with my family. To be apart from them is wearying to my bones, and with Jessica already away at school, I only have two of my three favorite people to be with in the evenings. I want to give them my full attention, and that workload is something I have been struggling to put behind me when I walk in the house. Not as successful on that front as I would like to be some evenings…
Also, on the outer edges of my mind has been this feeling of missing my time with my friend Ray doing a Bible study, sharing life, and kicking each other in the teeth when we need it. We have both been experiencing an uptick in stress lately, and those times we get together to share and do a little life as men really helps us. We did have a meeting a couple of weeks ago, but my travel has taken that off the table this week and last…
So, tonight when I got back to the room and got comfortable, I fired up the laptop to do what I usually do when I am alone in a hotel room.
Yep. Party guy am I… I usually take these opportunities to settle in and get some of the stuff done that has been hanging over my head and catch up a little. My family is not here for me to engage with, so I might as well take care of some of the stuff piling up at work to reduce some of the stress, right? Isn’t that a mature thing to do?
Well, tonight I chose to write instead.
Writing is something I love to do. It helps me clear some of the cobwebs from my mind and get some thoughts in order. My wife can tell you that I am one who thinks out loud, and dumping out my brain from time to time to see what might be stuck in the corners is a very good thing for me. Writing helps me do that, but I have not been very good about it lately.
With everything going on, I had pretty much decided that I was probably going to say goodbye to this blog. Probably not forever, but for a time at least. I just don’t have the time to build a readership and develop this thing into the ministry I hope it could be one day. It takes time to write, and I just have not had the time to devote to doing it well.
That is part of the reason I started to post pictures to my Relentless Growth Facebook Page instead of here every day. I thought I would just let this page fade away. Nobody would probably miss it anyway. If I can’t do it well, then why should I bother? Might as well quit.
That thought went through my mind when I opened up WordPress tonight. What was I doing? Is this a good use of my time? I could be working! It’s not like that pile of stuff is going to go away on its own! Then I remembered a pic I saw the other day:
It became clear to me that this is a fight I need to stay in. Not necessarily because there may be twos of threes of people who might read this and be encouraged. Right now, it is because I need it. I need this little break from my work thoughts so I can shake out those corners of my mind and set some things straight again. I need it to because my priorities may be getting out of whack!
I need this time to slow down and examine some of the stuff I am working through in order to get the right perspective for moving forward again. It’s like I learned in one of my classes last week:
“When I slow down, I go faster.”
I need the slow down to keep me from burning out. I need the slow down to take me away from work. I need the slow down to be a better husband, a better father, and a better follower of Christ. Those are the things that matter the most to me on this earth. They are so much more important than a budget, a process, or an action plan. They are the things that keep me centered. The things that keep me FOCUSED.
This little break tonight is part of my Relentless Growth. It was a nudge from God to hunker down for a second and let the battle rage around me, but not be in it for a little while. Time to sit and think about what is important. Time to acknowledge the gifts He has given me and see where the priorities of my life need to be. Time to see that this is a time that I hear Him speak into my heart as I write.
I’ve neglected this too much lately. I need to do it more often, and I am going to start scheduling it into my week somewhere. There must be time to do this because God doesn’t seem to want to take this desire to write away from me. He apparently wants this door to remain open.
So, as for you, Dear Reader, I guess I am back. Not sure what the schedule is going to look like for posts, but I am going to be here again on a regular basis. Not daily, but regularly. If you feel like subjecting yourself to my thoughts more often, then come over to the Facebook page for Relentless Growth and “Like” it for a daily dose.
Before I log off tonight, I just want to take a minute and say thanks to those who do encourage me to write. My wonderful wife, Tammi, is chief among them, and I know she sometimes feels she is keeping me from doing just that. (She is almost always right, but not on that one!) I appreciate your words, and I hope mine encourage you in some way as well.
So, goodnight all! I will see you here again! I think I might go read my book before bed! Work will be there tomorrow!