Recharging to Live at Your OptimumBy
Most of us live at a pretty high speed. Work, school, extra jobs, investing, family activities, friends, hobbies, sports, volunteer activities, church. We often come home from our vacations needing a vacation. Wow, I’m exhausted just thinking about it.
Yet, our solution? Step on the gas. Go faster. We try to cram more into our 24 hours so eight hours of sleep seems like a luxury. We read time management books on how to squeeze even more activities in, if we can just find time to read the book.
The result? Often we feel like walking zombies. We’re going through the motions but not really living. The lights are on but we haven’t been home for a long time.
Can you relate?
I had come to that place. I was running on empty.
My business is going strong, the writing is taking off, I’m heavily involved in some non profits, we invest actively, spend time talking with our kids who are both living away. All great stuff.
But I was rushing from one event to another and beginning to wonder, “What’s it all for?” I was losing enthusiasm just going through the motions. My passion was running flat.
Thankfully, we had set up a week with some friends at their family cabin at Huntington Lake. Their cabin in the forest has a beautiful view of the lake. Steve has been a life long friend so every summer Jennifer and I get the opportunity to spend some time with he and his wonderful wife Pam.
Our days consist of me usually getting up first and taking a walk along the shore while the water is glassy and often the deer are grazing. I stop and watch the Osprey swooping over the water fishing. When I get back it’s time for cappuccinos. Later I fix brunch. In the afternoon we sail. Then back to the cabin for drinks and hors-de-oeuvres. Followed by barbequing as the sun sets, dinner by candlelight and from our bedroom we watched the moon beaming through the windows as we drifted off to sleep.
Next day? Repeat. Not a bad life.
After a couple of days, when my brain regained consciousness, I began thinking about my life and particularly my writing.
“Am I being effective? Is it truly helping people? Is it making a difference? Is it glorifying to God?”
And, “How can I be a better husband and father? How can I take better care of my clients?”
I asked God these questions as I walked. But more important I spent a lot of time just listening and thinking. Tuning into what was deep inside. I truly believe God answers those kinds of questions when I stop long enough to hear him.
And amazingly as my mind cleared I could sense God’s answers. I gained clarity and direction. I wrote down answers that will get me a little further down my journey. I don’t have all the answers but I have enough for the next steps.
In addition I came back refreshed and renewed. I was ready to get back in the game.
One of the things that’s always fascinated me about Jesus is that even though he is God yet because he was in human form he got tired and needed time off. His ministry was only three years long. He had to walk wherever he went. Most of us would have been in a frenzy. Yet, often he slipped away from the crowds with his close friends or by himself for a time of refreshing.
One time he said to his closest friends, “Come apart for a while.”
I believe that’s a message for us as well.
Rick Warren says, “You either come apart or you will come apart.”
If Jesus needed those times to recharge why would we think we don’t?
Often we feel guilty about taking off the time. Yet it’s critical.
The blessings that come out of it are tremendous. It gives us time to sort out our lives. Make sure we’re on the right track. There’s nothing better for building into the relationships with our spouse and children. It gives us time to slow down and listen to what God is trying to say to us. We have a chance to de-stress and unwind which can pay huge dividends in our health. And just having fun makes all the busyness of normal life worth it all again.
A few things that help me maximize those times?
First, I just go have fun. I laugh, play and enjoy the time. I believe God made us to enjoy life. This is a great opportunity to do it robustly.
Second, I spend the time with the people I’m with. I don’t turn on the TV, read the news, click into my computer except to check for crucial emails. It’ll all be waiting when I get back. I want to be completely involved in the moment with the ones I care about. That’s what I’ll remember.
Third, I build in times of solitude to tune into what God is saying to me. I try to get in touch with things I’m struggling with and questions I have. I spend some time alone with God as I can and just feel his presence. Thank him. Pray and listen. And clarity and peace comes.
Pretty nice description of recharging isn’t it?
Do you need to recharge? Are your batteries low? What helps you recharge?
If this post has helped you please let me know. And please share it with a friend and subscribe if you haven’t already. I appreciate it.
Douglas Armey, the LPL Financial adviser associated with this website, practices in Fresno, California and may discuss and/or transact business only with residents of the following states: California, Idaho and Oregon.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. To determine which investment(s) may be appropriate for you, consult your financial advisor prior to investing. All performance reference is historical and is no guarantee of future results.