making time

Life can be very busy. I remember in my past life, when I was a glorified bureaucrat by day and peace & justice/church geek by night, I would often feel frazzled and overwhelmed by how much there was to do.

I discovered that one way to feel less overwhelmed was to make a commitment to personal daily prayer. Somehow spending time with the big guy in the morning and evening made everything else a bit easier in between.

Another thing I discovered was that it's important for me to make time for me. While I exhibit many extroverted qualities, I am at heart an introvert. When I'm super busy and overwhelmed, I need time to just be with me. So, at the suggestion of my old spiritual director, I started scheduling "ME" time into my very busy schedule. Literally, I'd write myself into my calendar at least one weeknight or weekend day each week. That way, when someone asked if I was available for X,Y, or Z, I could honestly say that I had an appointment. They didn't need to know that the appointment was with someone named Susan Francois!

Somehow, in my transition to this new life, I forgot about that little trick (personal prayer still does wonders though). The past few weeks, I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed and busy with everything there is to balance - full time ministry, quality time with my sister housemates, homework for an online scripture class I'm taking, groovy sister meetings and activities, a smattering of social engagements .... I'm sure you have your own comparable list.

As I say, I was feeling overwhelmed and then I remembered .... I haven't scheduled any "ME" time in a long time! So, I reviewed my schedule for the week, made a few adjustments (which included rescheduling a very understanding friend), and wrote my own name on the calendar entry for today. It's been good - renewing plus productive - and the day's not even over! I even managed to bake a batch of chocolate chip cookies which is always a relaxing enterprise for me.

I think I need to reinstate "ME" time as I continue on this journey. I think its a very important element to my sanity and the elusive thing called balance.


Kelly_SSJ said...

Thank you for the reminder!!! :) thankfully i did just that today as well.

Sarah said...

Well, I'm feeling smug because I took a day last week. Although I must say that your attitude is much better than mine. I'm hopeless at scheduling me time, but where it crops up I'm good at making the most of it!

Anonymous said...

What a great idea, I'm going to start and do that!

Anonymous said...

One time I gave a Professor an hour for his birthday. I scheduled an hour with him in his office and even brought him a coffee. And then told him that it was his birthday present. Here is an hour completely open. Enjoy. It was great!

I think it also has something to do with that it really is all about you. If you don't take time to quiet, how can you listen to your Self?

Not that I'm good at it either.... :-)

Padre Steve said...

Sanity precedes sanctity! Good job! Padre Steve