If You Don’t Get Out Of Debt Now, You’ll Hate Yourself Later

Photo by Dave Lawler

Photo by Dave Lawler

Waiting For Perfect Timing

Perfect timing.

I suspect I’m the king of this elusive time issue. I tend to wait around for the timing to be just about right on most everything such as writing an important article, scheduling the doctor’s appointment, working on a speech, having an important conversation, or making that critical phone call.

The reality of perfect timing is that it is merely a socially acceptable way to procrastinate.

And, I’m sure I’m not alone in this, either. I would guess that most of us like to wait around for the “perfect timing” on almost anything in life.

Yeah, we’re just procrastinating.

So, why do we procrastinate? What are we waiting around for?

Perhaps, taking action will take us out of our comfort zone? It will make us uncomfortable, and we human beings are funny that way. We live for comfort. We don’t like stress. But, we also don’t accomplish what we need to do, either.

If we would just embrace our discomfort and take one small step of action, then we would find that it’s really not as bad as we made it out to be in our mind.

The Perfect Time To Pay Off Debt

Paying off debt is one of these areas that people like to wait around for the right timing.

Perfect timing is a myth. It’s pure hokum.

Yeah, we think we’ll start paying down our debt when we get a higher paying job, when we get our website built that is going to make us a million dollars, when we can finally get moved into our dream house, or when we’re done having kids and the wife goes back to work.

The reality is that there is no such thing as perfect timing. We’re just procrastinating taking action on something that will cause us discomfort. We know that we shouldn’t be carrying the debt load we’re currently carrying, but it’s this big scary monster that we don’t want to deal with.

So, we put it off until tomorrow, or the next day, or the day after that. If you’re not working on getting out of debt now, then it’s probably not going to happen later.

But, I can tell you from personal experience that if you face your fear and look at this ugly debt monster in the face, it’s probably not as bad as you think. We always make things bigger in our mind than they are.

Now Is The Time

I don’t care where you’re at, today.

Maybe you’re still in college. You started a new business a few months ago. You just got married. Your wife is about to give birth to your firstborn child.

Wherever you are in life, right now IS, without a doubt, the very best time to embark on your debt-free journey. Your life will not be any easier one year from now. It’s just going to get more complicated and more expensive at some level. Plus, in these uncertain economic times we now find ourselves, you are better off to just deal with your current state than wait on better financial times that may be several years away.

Take action today on moving toward a debt-free life. Don’t procrastinate any longer. The clock is ticking. If you don’t get out of debt now, you’ll hate yourself later.

Questions: Are you waiting around to become debt-free? What are you waiting around for? What one action could you take today to break your cycle of procrastination and move toward financial freedom?






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Do You Know The Secret Formula For A Better Life?

Photo by  Coschda

Photo by Coschda

A Personal Discovery

I was pleasantly surprised.

I had discovered a secret formula for an amazing life. The more I engaged in this activity, the better I felt.

You see, a few years ago, I started developing some specific, personal habits in my life that were making look and feel better.

What exactly is this secret formula for a better life?

Exercise.

I know, I know. I’m sure you’re not overly surprised with this secret formula. It’s really not much of a “secret.”

We all have a head knowledge that exercise is supposed to be really, really good for us. The problem is that very few people take this knowledge and actually apply it. From my own personal experience, I have found that once you do apply this knowledge, though, the benefits of daily exercise are truly amazing. I can no longer imagine a life without regular exercise.

I made a complete paradigm shift on exercise after receiving five amazing benefits.

5 Surprising Benefits of Exercise

I believe the majority of people exercise to lose weight. That’s great. Keep on losing those pounds! But, I have also found that there are several other major benefits to daily exercise. These reasons keep me hooked and coming back for more.

  1. Increased energy level. This was the biggest benefit I have found once I got into the “groove” of daily exercise. I have a lot more energy to get stuff done. I have more energy from early morning all the way into the evening. This is the number one reason that keeps me going back to the gym every day. I want more energy to accomplish my dreams and goals.
  2. Enhanced mood. If you struggle with anxiety, irritability, stress, or depression, then regular exercise is a great prescription to boost your mood! I have found my life to be lived on a more “even keel” with exercise. Get off your emotional roller coaster with a little bit of exercise.
  3. Expanded mental focus. It is a well established fact that our mental capacity increases with exercise. We become more alert and focused on the tasks before us. In an age of digital distraction, we can all use a little more mental focus.
  4. Extended waking hours. The “weird” part of daily exercise is that you end up needing to sleep less. Why would this be? It almost seems like an oxymoron. You would think you would need to sleep more to allow your body to recover from all your exercise. But, once you are in a healthier state due to exercise, your bodily systems run more efficiently. They don’t need to work as hard, thus the need for a little less sleep. Then, if you need less sleep, you can accomplish even more!
  5. Renewed love life. Yeah, I don’t think I need to go into a lot of detail here, but daily exercise (for us married couples, of course) does help your love life. Try it, and see what I’m talking about!

Questions: How about you? Do you exercise? Why or why not? If you do exercise regularly, do you agree with my five benefits listed here? Am I missing any additional benefits that you have discovered?






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Featured Guest Post At XPastor.org: 7 Suggestions For Better Meetings

XPastor.orgI’m pleased to announce that I had a new guest post go live this week over at XPastor.org.

Post Title: Meetings Are Lame: 7 Suggestions On Making Them Better

Summary: In this post, I discuss the impact of poorly organized and executed meetings on any organization. I give 7 suggestions for making them better, such as:

  • Consider holding only afternoon meetings.
  • Create an agenda for each meeting.
  • Appoint a leader in charge of the meeting.
  • Announce a distraction free zone.
  • Start and end on time.
  • Create an action items list.
  • Delegate tasks within the meeting.

Read this and more over on my guest post at XPastor.org.

Thank you to Dr. David Fletcher and his team for utilizing my post!






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3 Areas I’m Fighting Back Against Clutter In The New Year

Photo by Basial

Photo by Basial

The Expansion of Clutter

Clutter. Similar to the shark in the movie Jaws, you know it’s always lurking around in your home. You may not see it immediately, but you know that it’s a problem that needs to be dealt with sooner than later.

Over time, clutter just builds up and expands. The more people living in the home, especially families with small children, the more stuff is accumulated. And, of course, the holiday season is the worst time of year for accumulating a whole new pile of additional stuff through Christmas gifts.

Worst case scenario of clutter: you end up on an TV episode of Hoarders.

I came back from my own Christmas holiday break this year on a mission: declutter my life. It’s time to get rid of junk and reorganizing my physical spaces (home and office) as well as digital world (computer files, email, etc.). I kind of go through this manic problem once or twice a year.

So What?

So, who really cares about clutter anyway? What’s the big deal if we have stuff piling up around us on a continual basis?

Here are a few great quotes that synthesize the unique problem of clutter and the ultimate benefits of a clutter-less lifestyle:

“I hate belongings. I hate clutter. It really bothers me because I can’t think properly. If you’ve got distractions in front of you, your mind goes nuts.” – Simon Cowell

“Clutter is not just physical stuff. It’s old ideas, toxic relationships and bad habits. Clutter is anything that does not support your better self.” – Eleanor Brownn

“The wonderful, beautiful thing that happens when you rid yourself of the things that don’t see your worth? You make space in your life for all the glorious things you deserve.” – Mandy Hale

We can’t think properly because it is a distraction. It does not support your better self. Losing the clutter makes room for better, more glorious things in our life.

3 Areas In The Battle Against Clutter

Here are my three areas I’m currently waging war in my battle against the enemy of clutter:

  1. Clearing Out Drawers and Closets. We can all get a little lazy when it comes to keeping our homes clean and organized. We randomly toss clothes, shoes, and accessories into drawers and closets during busy, hectic days. Pretty soon, we have a disorganized mess on our hands. We also accumulate clothing items that we don’t and won’t wear any more. Time to clear out and bag up those items and give them away to your favorite local charity.
  2. Tackling The Dreaded Inbox. In our modern society, digital clutter – emails and other files – are a new form of hoarding that takes place in our lives. Well, hoarding may be an extreme word to use, but our digital world has added a whole other layer to our lives that needs to be cleared out and organized on a regular basis. Right now, I’m trying to attack my email problems at the source by unsubscribing from email lists that I no longer find useful in my life. Also, if we attempt to only “handle” and immediately deal with each email once and then delete it, that should help reduce clutter as well. Also, consider going through hard drives and cloud drives to delete unneeded files; reorganize needed files into a clear structure of various folders.
  3. Fighting Back Against Junk Mail. At one time in my life, a few years back, I thought I had a handle on my junk mail issues, and then over the last two years, I feel like my junk mail has returned with a vengeance. In the 2008, 2010 version of Financial Peace University, Dave Ramsey gives proactive advice on how to decrease unauthorized direct mail marketing. If you own this particular workbook, check out p. 89 or click-through now to this web page. I just re-registered myself on these opt out websites in order to cut down on my daily mail clutter!

Question: Do you have any helpful tips in dealing with physical and digital clutter? If so, I’d love to hear your thoughts. Feel free to leave me a comment.

Focus On The Line Of Your Life, Not The Dots

Photo by robinparmar

Photo by robinparmar

Inspired Musical Performance

As a musician, it’s easy for me and other music-types to get hung-up on technique. We try really hard to play the right notes at the right time at the right pitch. We think we have achieved success if we can nail that musical trifecta and then stick the landing!

While technique is vitally important to achieving a successful music performance, we’re definitely missing the boat as musicians if that’s our only concern. The purpose of performing any piece of music is to communicate the intended interpretation of the composer. We need to consider the overall line, shape, musical structure, and phrasing. We need to be more interested in communicating the message of the music rather than playing a technically perfect rendition of the song.

The greatest musicians of all time have been able to detach themselves from their performance technique and communicate the message of the music. They have inspired us with beautiful performances that have transcended the written notes on the page. These musicians passionately touch our lives in amazing ways.

Your Greatest Performance: Living Life

I believe several analogies can be drawn between musical performance and our own life performance.

As with too much focus on musical technique, so too can we get hung up on the proper technique of living our lives. We get focused on the individual points of our lives, instead of connecting these dots into an incredible life line that communicates an amazing message to those around us.

Let me give you some examples of what I’m talking about.

When I speak of the “individual points” of our lives, I’m mostly talking about those BIG life events that we think about being able to accomplish: graduating high school, graduating college, establishing your career, getting married, having 2.5 children, getting those children raised, socking enough money in IRA’s to retire, retiring, traveling the world, crawling into the casket, and passing away.

What happens, though, when we get focused on the technique, the main points of our lives?

A number of things can happen. We can lose sight of the big picture of our lives. We can get bogged down in one area (such as finishing college – I know I did!). We can desire the act of marriage so much that we lose sight of our life line and marry the wrong person. We can get so worked up about putting enough money away for retirement that we’re working too hard in a job in which we feel unhappy and unfulfilled.

So, what if we flipped this whole life process around? What if we started living out the line of our lives instead of getting hung up on these individual parts of our lives?

Focus On The Line

The best way to overcome this point-by-point, event-by-event living is to stay focused on the line – your unique path to your ultimate, desired destination.

Stephen Covey called this type of thinking, “Beginning with the end in mind.” This is visionary, possibility thinking.

Have you ever sat down and figured out your life destination, where you intentionally want to end up? In your mind, you may have a general idea, but have you purposely crafted a statement of life intention? Have you created an extraordinary vision that you are running toward each and every day?

Perhaps you desire to live to age 100 and be the reigning patriarch of an amazingly large, Christian family of 5 kids, 15 grandchildren, and 30 great-grandchildren! How amazing would that be?

So, how are you going to get to there? How would you live if this was your desired destination?

I can just about guarantee you won’t get there if you’re out partying each weekend, you and your spouse fight constantly, and your family is an absolute train wreck. In this situation, your daily actions don’t line up with your intended life destination. So you’re going to need to stop and spend a little time on your life technique so your life can play out to its intended conclusion.

Fix Your Technique

Let’s go back to my example above and think through the technique on how to possibly accomplish the following life statement:

“I desire to live to age 100 and be the reigning patriarch of an amazingly large, Christian family of 5 kids, 15 grandchildren, and 30 great-grandchildren!”

  • Part 1: “I desire to live to age 100.” [Personal note: I recognize that our time here on earth is totally in the hands of Almighty God (James 4:14). This is still a vision that we can live toward]. So, does your lifestyle currently support your being able to live a mostly healthy life to age 100? If not, what needs to change today in order for you to live into the possibility of age 100? Do you need to change your diet, start exercising, and get yearly physicals?
  • Part 2: ” … and be the reigning patriarch …” Are you a strong leader in your family? How do treat your spouse and children? Are you a servant leader to your family? What do you need to do, who do you need to become in order to be the respected leader within your immediate and extended family?
  • Part 3: ” … of a an amazingly large, Christian family …” Are you strong in your own walk with Christ? Does your walk match your talk? Are you in the Word and in prayer on a consistent basis? Is weekly church attendance a priority? Can you look your family members in the eyes and say with the confidence of the Apostle Paul, “follow me as I follow the Lord?” (1 Corinthians 11:1).

Work on your life technique just like a musician would, but also don’t forget to play the song of your life with everything you’ve got! Have a vision and live toward that vision each day.

Questions: How is your “life song” playing out, today? Are you hung up on performing the right life techniques or are you focused on your life line and ultimate destination? Have you ever crafted a vision of intention for the ultimate destination of your life here on earth?

As we begin a new year, now is a great time to work on the line, the ultimate destination of what you desire to achieve in this life.

The Lost Art Of Pruning: How Cutting Out Dead, Unnecessary Stuff Can Lead To A Better Life

Photo by Pictoscribe

Photo by Pictoscribe

Taking Care Of The Fruit Trees

When I was a kid growing up, my family had a bunch of fruit trees in our yard. We had a few different types including apple, cherry, and even a pear tree. I remember my dad having this old, green tank sprayer which he attached to the back of his riding lawn mower. Then, he would drag that sprayer around and spray the fruit trees a couple of times a year in order to control the various insects that liked these fruit trees.

He not only sprayed the trees, but he also took time to prune the trees back. He owned this really long, telescoping pruning rod with a little saw and limb slicer. I believe he normally did this at least once a year, probably in late fall after the growing season was over.

Why Pruning?

The goal of pruning is to produce strong, healthy, attractive plants. There are a number of reasons to prune your trees:

  • Pruning for safety. An example of this would be pruning back low hanging branches that may injure someone.
  • Pruning for health. An example of this would be pruning out all the dead, deformed, and diseased branches in a tree.
  • Pruning for aesthetics. Sometimes trees grow into strange, uneven shapes. You can use various pruning techniques to make trees more aesthetically pleasing to the eye.

The pruning practices for tree growth can just as easily apply to our own lives as well.

Pruning Principles For Life Growth

As time moves forward each day, month, and year, we grow in our personal lives. Stuff gets added into our home schedules. Work responsibilities increase. We may even add more children to our families. Our kids add-on more extra-curricular activities. Our churches add more ministries and associated events.

For some reason, our society seems to think that more is better. So, more and more stuff gets loaded on our plates, or we just plain get handed more plates to spin.

We start looking like gnarly, unhealthy, odd-shaped trees!

The safety, health, and aesthetics of our lives are now in jeopardy. We are life accidents waiting to happen. These increasingly busier lives are completely unsustainable. Something has to and will give at some point.

We get sick so that we’re forced to rest. A project at work that normally would be a slam dunk falls apart, and our job is now in question. We receive a bad report from the doctor so that we’re forced to slow down and examine our lives. Our children begin rebelling because we never get to spend quality and quantity time with them because everyone has way too much going on.

So, then what happens? Everything comes to a complete standstill – our lives, families, work, and church engagement – as we deal with the crisis.

We stop. We fix the problem (or, so we believe, anyway). We resume all the activity all over again. Nothing really changes, though.

An emergency crisis takes place next year, and we begin the cycle all over again.

Something has to change. We need to take out our pruning shears and saws and cut out the dead and unnecessary stuff in our lives. For our own health, safety, and maybe even aesthetics, we sometimes need to cut back to the bare essentials to have a life that works. The end result is a life that has been properly maintained and prepared for stronger growth in the future.

Assuming you have some downtime this holiday season, I would encourage you to take some time to examine and prune your life for a better year in 2014. We have the potential to grow stronger, faster as a result of the trimming back.

Questions: Is your life out of control? Are you spinning way too many full plates right now? Have you taken the time to fully assess where you are? What needs to be pruned out of our life? What are the core essentials that need to stay in place?

3 Ideas For Creating A Better Prayer Life

Photo by ☻☺ on Flickr

Photo by ☻☺ on Flickr

The Struggle

I don’t know about you, but I’ll admit it. I struggle with my prayer life and this struggle primarily deals with making the time to pray and having a focused mind when I pray.

I’m no George Müller.

But, I do know that I should pray. I want to pray. I even know what I should pray about.

Unfortunately, we live in one of the busiest, fast-paced, most distraction-filled times in human history. We have so many things and so many people competing for our attention. If we’re not intentional about it, then our prayer life will end up being one of those areas that keeps getting pushed off to the side of our lives. We end up giving God our leftovers in prayer time instead of our best focused energy.

Our prayer life should be about a relationship with God. Regular, transparent, intimate communication is all part of a growing relationship. God speaks to us through the Holy Spirit as we read His Word. We speak to Him through prayer.

Over the last several months, I have found myself making a number of changes to my personal prayer time. I have been looking for more focused time opportunities to pray. In this post, I wanted to share my prayer journey with you, and I hope that this will be an encouragement to you and your own prayer life with the Lord.

3 Ideas For A Better Prayer Life

  1. Spread your prayers throughout the day. Back in an earlier era, getting up early and spending an hour or two in prayer was perhaps portrayed as a “normal” activity within the Christian life. While we may go through individual times of intense, long duration times of prayer, I believe that our new “normal” should be praying short prayers throughout the day. If your spiritual life is defined as a relationship with the Lord, then doesn’t it make greater sense to have lines of communication open throughout your day? Prayer shouldn’t be just an item on our morning checklist.
  2. Discover your personal “prayer closet.” For me, I have recently found my car to be the best location for (mostly) uninterrupted time with the Lord. As soon as I jump in the car in the morning to drive to work, I praise the Lord for who He is and what He is doing in my life, in my church, and in my ministry. I confess my sin. I offer up prayers of thanksgiving. And finally, I offer up my daily requests to the Lord. I do this all out loud too while I’m driving down the highway. Other people in the cars around me probably think I’m nuts. That’s okay.
  3. Create a system to focus your prayer time. Previously, I tried to have a digital prayer list on my smart phone, but I found this distracting to use especially if I’m praying in the car. I’ve ended up going “old school” analog by just writing my various prayer requests on 3×5 cards and keeping these in the center console of my car. This system seems to be working pretty well for me so far. Just a reminder, though. Be sure to keep your eyes on the road and refer to your index cards when you don’t have a lot of traffic or other difficult driving conditions. Flipping through index cards during a thunderstorm or six inches of snow is a bad idea!

Questions: How about you? What does your prayer life look like? Do you have a “system” in place that works really well for you? If so, what does your system look like?

Serving One Another Through Our Presence and Participation

Photo by the The Lutheran World Federation

Photo by the The Lutheran World Federation

A Life of Service

The Christian life is a life of service. Nowhere in Scripture do I see a person coming to faith in Christ, and then the Lord asking that person to sit on their hands and do nothing. Quite the contrary. According to God’s Word, we are supposed to use our talents, abilities, and finances to build up the Body of Christ and advance His Kingdom here on earth. This is our mission as believers and as His Bride, the universal Church.

Serving Our Fellow Believers

Not only should we serve others outside of the church, but also we should serve one another within the church body as well.

We serve each other in two important ways. First, we serve each other as church members through our presence, by simply showing up. We need to be present on a regular basis for worship services and small group meetings. I think this is why the writer of Hebrews says in Hebrews 10:25, “ … not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” We need to show up, to be present, in order to encourage one another, to mature, to help each other grow in our walk with Christ.

Second, we serve each others through our participation, through using the gifts and abilities He has given to us. Each church member has their own special gifts and abilities that they bring to their church. These talents are important for church members to utilize in their own unique role within the Body of Christ.

1 Corinthians 12:4-14 (NIV) states:

There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.

Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.

Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.

An Age of Distraction

Unfortunately, we live in a unique of age of distraction. We have more and more stuff that is distracting us away from our service in God’s Kingdom. We have more media to consume than ever before. We have more social networks to keep up with. We have more activities scheduled on Sundays. We have children’s sports games to attend on the Lord’s Day. We have professional sports games to attend, do the tailgate party thing, or watch on TV.

I recently heard the statistic that a church member who is considered a “regular attendee” actually only attends church 40-50% of Sunday worship services. So, what we’re talking about here is people attending every other week at best. And over time, this statistic is getting worse, not better.

There’s something wrong with this picture. In my opinion, this is an attendance habit that was never God’s intention for His children.

Satan is pretty smart, though. He uses all of these “good” activities in order to distract us from what is most important for us – our spiritual lives, and the Kingdom of God.

Obedience and Priorities

I know I’m probably old-fashioned and not hip like the hipsters, but I believe there should be a high level of obedience when it comes to our presence and participation at church. We should be active weekly in the our local church. We should make this part of our a spiritual life a high priority. I believe this is an expectation of God the Father, otherwise, why would He have founded the Church through His Son in the first place?

Making church a priority in your personal life and family life will mean that you will need to say “no” to a lot of good stuff. It’s also going to mean a lot more work for you and your family as you will need to investigate which activities your children will be able to participate in based on weekend scheduling. If it conflicts with church attendance and participation, I personally wouldn’t do it. My family’s spiritual life is way more important than whether or not my kids are well-rounded in sports or the fine arts.

God cares more about our relationship with Him. Our presence and participation in the Body of Christ is a major part of that relationship with Him.

Questions: So, how’s your family’s attendance and participation level in your local church? Are you fully engaged or merely half in? What changes do you need to make to your weekend calendar to make His church a priority in your life?

The Power of Life Detours: How Unintended Paths Can Lead to Awesome Things

Photo by Don Harder

Photo by Don Harder

Detour Ahead

Does the “Detour Ahead” sign strike fear in your heart while you’re driving down the highway? Yeah, I’m not a huge fan of that sign, either. I’m always wondering if it’s a short detour or a long one? Is this going to make me big-time late to my destination?

Now that it’s early summer here in the Midwest, state transportation departments are already busy at work repairing highways after a brutal winter. I’m starting to see more detour signs as a result. Motorists are having to leave their intended path of travel, take detours off onto side roads, and then eventually get back to their original travel path.

These detours can be fear-inducing, annoying, frustrating, time-consuming, and unwelcome in already busy, stressed-out lives. “Ain’t nobody got time for that” (credit: Sweet Brown) is a popular saying in our current culture that comes to mind.

As with road construction detours, so too in life, we have detours that take us off our intended path. These detours could be the result of accidents, completely out of our control. These detours could be the result of poor choices in our own sowing and reaping. These detours could even be the result of the bad choices of other people. Stuff happens.

So, whether the life detour is our own fault or somebody else’s fault, the key to these detours is our reaction to them. Are we going to get hopping mad and carry resentment around for the rest of our lives? Are we going to over-react at first before we realize that the detour wasn’t quite as bad as we originally thought?

The best choice we have at a time of detour is to just go with it. Embrace the detour and see where it takes us in the end.

Just Go With It

I can just hear you saying, “Yeah, Larry, sure. That’s easy for you to say. You don’t know what’s going on in my life right now. I’m on a major, lengthy detour right now, and I’m way off my intended destination path. I have no idea if I’ll ever even end up back on the right course.”

I get it. Trust me, I really do. A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a post about my own life detour here: Moving From Broken To Superhuman: Your 5-Step Action Plan.

Now that I’m past that particular detour and back on the highway, I can truly say that I’m thankful for the detour. God is faithful and guided my path to better places. I’m a better, stronger person as a result of the detour. Even my barber (always a trusted confidant and advisor) says I’ve recieved a “double blessing” on the other side. I definitely agree with his assessment!

Amazing blessings can come through difficult times. I learned how to be a much better husband and a father as a result. I finally figured out how to manage stress and rest. I’ve been able to get in the best physical shape of my life. I’ve become a better writer. I’ve developed amazing relationships on my journey. I’ve read some great books that have shaped my mind and taken me to new and better places.

Each detour you encounter in life, you really do have a choice. You can fight the detour. You can be mad about it. You can allow it to make you a bitter, depressed, unhappy person.

Or, you can just “roll with it” and see where the detour takes you. Chances are, you can learn some cool stuff. You can meet some amazing people along the way. You can become a better but different person on the journey.

On my own life detour I went from Broken To Superhuman. God shaped me into a better follower of Him. All praise be to God for His amazing grace.

Get My FREE Book

Interested in learning more about my own detour? I believe my 5-Step Action Plan can give you the tools to move through these life detours into a better place.

This little e-book addresses the problems and the accompanying solutions. So, do you want to stay angry and upset about your detour, or are you ready to move forward?

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5 Ways To Enjoy Your Life On A Deeper Level, Today

Photo by raymondtan85

Photo by raymondtan85

Savor The Experience

When I use the word “savor,” what comes to your mind? For me, I think of delicious food. Allowing a tasty piece of steak to roll around inside my mouth. Enjoying all the rich flavor experiences that the chef has infused into the food. Lingering over my meal in order to enjoy it as long as possible.

Here’s an appropriate definition of what I’m talking about:

to give oneself to the enjoyment of: to savor the best in life (source: Dictionary.com).

I’m struck by the first few words of this definition – “to give oneself.” Sometimes, we just need to give ourselves permission to enjoy life and not be in such a huge rush in everything we do. Forget the time management principles and techniques. Just live life!

In this post, let’s look at some ways we can enjoy living our lives at a deeper, richer, more satisfying experience.

5 Ways To Savor Life Right Now

  1. Embrace what is before you right now, whatever it may be. Today could be a “bad” day for you. At the time that I’m writing this, I’ve been in the process of fighting through a bad cold. I’ve tried not to let it slow me down, though. I’ve tried to fulfill my obligations and enjoy the process along the way. Whether times are good or difficult, savor your life, today!
  2. Eliminate the distractions. It’s difficult to enjoy anything if you are tweeting, texting, Facebook-ing, and documenting your entire experience. Or, perhaps you go old school and always have your TV running in the background? Try turning all that stuff off and focus on the actual activity your engaged in. Enjoy the activity for what it is.
  3. Live in the moment. To be completely honest with you, I’ve never been a big “live in the moment” type of guy. I’ve always been the type who is looking into the future – tomorrow, next week, next year. The only way you can truly savor the experience, though, is to enjoy this very moment in time. Let tomorrow worry about itself.
  4. Linger a little longer. It’s so easy to just rush through an activity in order to move onto the next thing. Hey, why not slow down and take a little more time on what you’re doing right now? Your next activity can wait while you enjoy this one.
  5. Live with an attitude of gratitude. Appreciate what you have right now. I’m guessing you have a pretty incredible life, and that there are people around you who envy who you are and everything you have! Unfortunately, many times we all lose perspective on how great we have it. When we live with an attitude of thanksgiving for all that God has allowed into our life to enjoy, it’s a whole lot easier to fully enjoy our life. Is it time for a check-up on your attitude of gratitude?

Are You Savoring Your Life?

How about you? Have you been savoring your life or have you been simply existing? Are you trying to just rush through where you’re at right now in order to get on to the bigger, better deal?

If you are, I would just encourage you to slow down and reassess where you are, today. Don’t constantly chase the rainbow. If you do, you’re going to end up at the end of your life with a bunch of regrets.

Savor today. Suck all the delicious flavors out of each experience that you can!

Question: what’s going on in your life today that you could spend more time savoring the experience instead of just rushing through it?