Trust me, I get it.
I’ve been there. I’ve felt that weight. I’ve been that person who goes through the motions only to feel, at the end of the day, that I’m running in a hamster wheel or traveling on an endless road to nowhere.
What’s the purpose? What are my actions really amounting to? I’m heading somewhere… but where?
Having aspirations to live a fruitful life and have positive outcomes don’t add up to much if we don’t know how to actually do it.
Without knowledge of how to have your days amount to fruitful outcomes or how long it will take to get to where you want to go, the road can feel endless.
Here’s a good analogy. A few years ago my brother-in-law got a great idea: Let’s all take a drive! A family trip! It’ll be great! Immediately, I said, Yeah! What an awesome idea! Let’s do it!…. without really thinking it out.
Two weeks before the trip, I broke out into a cold sweat. I realized the enormity of what I had committed to. Shamefully, I admit, I tried to back out. It was too late: for better or for worse, we were all in for it.
By ‘it’, here’s how it went: His family of three (including his 1-year old daughter and pregnant wife), my mother-in-law, our family of 5 (including my 1-year old daughter and pregnant wife) and a niece: all ten of us piled into our sister-in-law’s 12 seater van and drove 800 miles to Omaha, NE to my other sister-in-law’s home. Two days later, their family of 8 joined us on our 500 mile trek to Rapid City, SD to stay in the Black Hills, visit Mount Rushmore and do the ‘tourist thing’.
Here’s the thing. It all sounded grand at first. Who doesn’t want to experience Mount Rushmore up close and personal? Why not visit our family in Omaha for the first time, getting all the cousins together?
The details hit me at the last minute: babies. Pregnant wives. Old 12 seater van through the narrow mountain roads. Hours and hours and hours on the road.
OK, well the good news is, we did it! Despite the hard parts, it’s a trip we’ll never forget. The adventure was worth it (but once a lifetime is enough!)
Where am I going with this? It’s the analogy of the endless road. That feeling that you’re on it, you don’t know how you got there, you don’t know when it will end, you don’t know how it will turn out.
Luckily, our trip to Mount Rushmore and back was fruitful and amounted to great memories. In order to keep myself from being in an overwhelming situation like that again, where I’ve pinned myself down to a plan that I haven’t thought out properly and don’t know what the outcome will look like, I need to equip myself with the right tools.
By tools, I mean knowledge, sacrifice and habit; asking yourself: What’s the purpose? What are my actions really amounting to? Where am I heading?
- Knowledge: know where you’re going and what it takes to get there.
- Sacrifice: make the right choices to make the journey worth it.
- Habit: Good daily habits lead to fruitfulness and positive outcomes.
Most people live in mediocrity. They don’t realize they’re called to a higher level of personal growth, which gives us all direction, purpose and fruitfulness in life.
Sure, there are times when life just gets crazy and it’s easy to lose sight of the goals. It’s like climbing a mountain, looking up and feeling overwhelmed. Or, like that long car ride when you are thinking, when is this going to end? I just want to arrive!!
What keeps us going is duty. On that South Dakota trip, duty was to get my family to the gold at the end of the rainbow (Mount Rushmore!) In life, duty is to God, myself, my family. It is always the thing that drives my heart. Our duty is to become the best person God created us to be. Here are some tips for you to get out of that hamster wheel, get off that road to nowhere and, finally, feel like you’re going somewhere.
These three tips will help you to live a fruitful life:
1. Be aware of your personal growth spiritually, emotionally, mentally, physically, and financially. Reflect, ask yourself these questions, and write down:
- Which area of life is least balanced? Where am I lacking?
- Which area is the most balanced?
- Who in my life helps me in these areas? Who is a hindrance? Are there inputs in my life that work against any of these?
- What sacrifices am I willing to make to become better?
2. Based on your thoughts, under each area of balance, write out three things you can do to attain more balance in each. Read these action points every day and make them goals to attain.
3. When goals are attained, add them to a victory spot, in a box or another special space, to denote your victories. Continue the process by creating new goals to achieve.
Remember, personal growth can only be attained with knowledge (of yourself, your path and what it takes to get there), sacrifice (to make the right choices that lead to growth) and good habits (that lead to fruitfulness and attainment of goals). Don’t get caught on that endless road to nowhere! Be aware of your personal growth daily so as to rid yourself of mediocrity and become the best person you were created to be!
Go and Grow!
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