Thursday, June 7, 2018

Beginning to Break Free from Blah...

Over the past several months, much of my life has been going well; however, I cannot seem to get over the hump in a couple of areas. The main part of the challenge is in completing two primary goals – each of which contain several tasks. I largely know what to do, but have struggled to get there. The problem is that I have prided myself so long on accomplishing the goals before me at a relatively quick pace (not burnout pace). Both of these goals are important to complete for various reasons, and I definitely have the motivation to complete them, but I have not been able to find the usual drive to do so.

Additionally, I have found myself reading less this year. While last year’s reading goal of one book per week was rather aggressive, this year, I have only read a handful so far (although two were VERY lengthy biographies on John Adams and Thomas Jefferson). (Incidentally, my usual “reading” of bios is by listening to them while driving.) Overall, I estimate I have read about 6-8 books this year, which is ok, far less than usual. However, recently, I have begun to snap out of the reading funk, and I believe that will assist me to snap out of my overall lack of productivity.

In 2017, one of the books I read was What’s Best Next by Matt Perman. I highly recommend the book, and awaited the sequel which was released at the end of April. I am reading this book more slowly, in part, because the title, Unstuck, is exactly what I need to be! But alongside this book, I have recently listened to The Power of Habit and now Smarter Faster Better (both by Charles Duhigg). (I will purchase these in print later, but for now, the idea was immersion in all of these ideas.) Overall, these four books are giving me the “courage” to get moving again, in part, by understanding why I have not been able to engage as I usually do. Ultimately, I am realizing that the issue I face is common while I am responsible, my ability to move forward relies on my ability to incorporate (or help) others as well.

In the coming weeks, I will likely fuse some of the thoughts I am having with the usual reflections I share from my weekly sermon. The sermon series begins this week on the life of David from 2 Samuel, so personal effectiveness and understanding is certainly in play. However, I also see the principles of these books at play in the series I have planned for this Fall related to the Church, and specifically our church. How might The Habit Loop or Personal Effectiveness impact our individual lives so as to impact the collective life of the church? These ideas are just beginning to take shape in my mind, but I suspect I will flesh out many of them in this blog over the coming months. Hopefully my reflections here will not only help me to process my thoughts, but perhaps they can encourage each one who reads this as well. Either way, what I share here will only touch on certain aspects of each book. I highly recommend the four books mentioned above to stir your thinking, and to help you move forward in whatever direction God has for you to move.

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