Starting a new year seems glamorous.
All the marketing ads and blog posts focused on becoming healthy and getting in your best shape are inspiring. Stores line the shelves with beautiful planners and calendars for those of us ready to plan our best year is enticing.
So much focus on doing the new.
Yet, none of the great ideas or plans are sustainable if we don’t start within.
What is your why?
What is your motivation?
How we talk to ourselves during this new year will make all the difference in how we build and maintain changes. So this year, I am starting off sharing three affirmations I use to help me cultivate an intentional life.
I give myself permission to grow slow.
Growth and time are interesting bedfellows. We often want to equate growth with a fast, microwave experience. We want what we want, and we want it now. Or at least, that is how I feel sometimes.
I don’t want to wait, and I definitely don’t want the process.
The pressure to make things happen, whether in my business, in my career, or even my family, makes me one cranky lady. Can you relate? Instead of trusting God with His plan and timing, I feel the need to jump in to “help” Him out. This ALWAYS ends in a mess.
Sustainable growth requires time.
At the beginning of the year, while I am making plans and setting goals, I must remind myself it’s okay to grow slow.
The relationships I am building, and the purpose I am walking in require deep roots that only grow with time. Time invested day by day, decision by decision, step by step.
We start to rush the growth process when we put our eyes on the journey of those around us.
We see our friends who have stepped out to become speakers. We watch our friends get married. We scroll the vacation pictures of others who are traveling the world.
Then we tell ourselves one very dangerous statement, “IF they , then I .”
My growth is connected to my journey and what God is working out in my heart.
Sometimes the journey is long because I am unwilling to make changes, unwilling to forgive, and unwilling to surrender. Sometimes the journey is long because God is helping me to cultivate a firm foundation in Him that can’t be swayed by the opinions of others or detours of life.
Slow growth is still growth.
I choose not to rush what God is doing in my life. I give myself permission to go slow.
I give myself permission to embrace my purpose in Christ.If you are anything like me, I have wasted way too much time hiding behind fear. I allowed the shame of my past, the guilt of my failures, and listening to the wrong voices to guide my choices instead of my faith.
Why would God want to use a girl like me?
At some point, I was either going to allow my past to be my guide or my God. I choose God.
Every day I decide to give myself permission to embrace my purpose in Christ.
I choose to step outside of every negative thought that screams I am unqualified, too broken, too messy, too loud, too talkative, too needy, too big, or to anything.
I choose to walk away from the fear of rejection, fear, and failure.
I choose to embrace a life loved by a loving Father who has intentionally created me for this time and space. There’s no mistake in my height, my gifts, even my sometimes unruly curls. Every single bit of my story is used for His glory.
What better way to honor God than to intentionally embrace and walk out His plan for myself without hesitation and in obedience. That means this lady is not hiding anymore.
I will tell my story for His glory. I will tell my children and for generations to come of His goodness. I will praise Him all the days of my life.
God didn’t call me to a life of performance; He created me for a life of purpose.
Oh yes, in him, I don’t have to earn a place. He has created a seat at his table for me. I need to show up. Friend, will you join me in permitting yourself to embrace your purpose in Christ?
I give myself permission to protect my time.
Most days I wake up, a lot of my time is already allocated. Whether it’s the commitments and responsibilities to my family, my career, or my community, my days can start pretty full.
To cultivate an intentional life, I must give myself permission to protect my time.
So how do I do that?
When I choose to protect my time, I am intentional with my yes and my no. My decisions cannot be based upon approval, validation of others, or even my emotions, but rather how does this align with my current season.
This is hard sometimes. Good opportunities come up (things I actually want to do). It’s tempting to want to say yes, but every good opportunity isn’t a God opportunity.
Friend to align my time with my season, I have become comfortable with saying no.
For a very long time in my life, saying no was hard. I was often more concerned about the feelings of others and afraid of rejection. I just didn’t want to be the bad guy, little did I know just how much I was hurting me. I had to make changes if I was going to live boldly in the life God designed for me.
I own my no.
No gives me focus, direction, and freedom to embrace my kingdom assignment.
I stop trying to do all things for all people and focus on the assignment God has given me in this season. It might seem strange at first or even feel uncomfortable, but saying NO will help give your YES power.
What is God telling you this year and this decade? Whatever it is, how you manage your time will have a tremendous impact on how you steward what God has placed in your hands.
Be bold and firm in protecting your time.
How can you write the book, if you don’t make time to write? How can you build your marriage if you are too busy for your spouse? How can you become physically and mentally healthy, if you are not intentional in carving out time for your wellness? How will you prioritize cultivating your relationship with Christ, if you are too busy to read, pray, or study? How will you build a community, if you are careless about being present in your relationships?
Decide today to give yourself permission to protect your time.
Wow! What a wonderful year and decade this will be when we choose to cultivate an intentional life. Join me in choosing to give yourself permission to grow slow, embrace your purpose in Christ, and protect your time. The best is ahead!
Cheering you on,