Help for Your Hurried Life | Barb Roose

A few years ago, I read a quote that sent a shockwave through my life. In his book, Soulkeeping, author John Ortberg asked distinguished philosopher Dallas Willard how to stay healthy spiritually. Willard uttered a sentence that God used to radically change my life: “You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.” (i)

On a scale of 1-10, how hurried is your life these days? Here are three possible reasons why we live hurried lives:

  • We think that everyone needs us, but there are too many people and not enough time;
  • We’re frustrated perfectionists and struggle to finish tasks;
  • We’re high-capacity achievers, but we’re scattered and because our priorities aren’t clear.

I don’t know if any of those categories resonate with you, but at different phases of my life, I fell into all three categories.

How did I stop the insanity? First, let me say that I’m still recovering and it will likely always be that way. My practical tip is keep at least a one-hour gap between appointments or obligations on my calendar. This sounds so simple, but this has been a game-changer for big-time hurry girl like me. That hour buffer gives my life room to breathe, instead of panting from sun up to sundown. I can even drive at a regular speed across town instead of screaming at stop lights to hurry up and turn green. (Please don’t judge, I bet that you’ve done it, too.)

In addition to the buffer, I use four questions to guard my schedule from hurry. These questions equip me to say “yes” with confidence and to say “no” with less guilt:

  • Conviction. What is my role at home and work in this season of my life?
  • Clarity. What are the things that only I can do at home or in my job?
  • Creativity. What are the unique gifts and talents that I want/need to use in this season of life?
  • Connection. Which relationships is God calling me to prioritize?

I hope that these two suggestions equip you to eliminate hurry so that you can slow down and savor God’s voice. You are so precious to Him!

*Portions excerpted from Winning the Worry Battle by Barbara L. Roose

(i) John Ortberg. Soulkeeping (Zondervan, Grand Rapids, MI 2014) 20.

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