This blog is somewhat of a confession. Limits are my biggest weakness. I over schedule, red-line, high performance everything. As I come to the end of a year, I realize it.
How can I change it this year? “Margin.”
Dr. Richard Swenson’s book “Margin” is totally revolutionary. This medical doctor tells you the physical, emotional, financial and spiritual consequences of a life without margin.
His analysis? A lack of margin is the source of most of your pain. Get his book. “I don’t have time to read it,” you say.
That’s why you need to read this blog.
Try changing these 5 things:
1. “Quality over quantity”
- This one statement will help you slow down. It’s not how MUCH food or how FAST a human can eat but how good it tastes going down.
- Look at your work. Is it quality? Are you too hurried to look at the details? Do your projects end up as a hot mess in your lack of systems and rush to accomplish? Who wants a car they rushed to put together in order to meet a production quota?
2. “Stretch, don’t pop”
- I saw a guy blow up a hot water bottle into a huge balloon. Suddenly, it reached it’s maximum limits and “BOOM.” Dr. Swenson said it is a scientific fact that a camel carries such heavy loads that one added straw can break his back!
- Grow, increase, and stretch….just don’t pop! Determine your limits and stay well inside of them. If the hot water bottle pops, it is of no use to anyone.
3. “Measure, don’t guess”
- Ask anyone and they will tell you they are a “little busy.” Analyze their hours per week and you will see a totally different picture.
- Margin operates on measurements. Check your physical performance (blood pressure, heart recovery after exercise, etc.). Look at your finances and how vulnerable you are to going broke. It will immediately help you get out of the “red zone” in any area.
4. “Relationships over resources”
- Don’t miss your life trying to pay for it. If you live above your means, you will never have time to be with the ones you are providing for! The questions is, “Three jobs…or three kids?”
- Build in white space like the margins on this page. Don’t cram every space with something that makes money. If you do, you will have no time left for when your child tugs your shirt to go out and shoot basketball.
5. “Plan your margins with your spouse”
- Don’t get defensive. Let your spouse speak into your life about the margins they see you running past. Implement their observations. The life you save could be your own!
- Remember, I’m preaching to myself. This year, I want you to lift your quality of life and your quality of relationships with my family and friends.
Don’t live on the edge of the cliff this year. Back away and give yourself some margin.