Last year I decided to start having a “word of the year” in my life. The word I choose is something I want to specifically work on and focus on areas in my life that I can challenge myself and grow in. Last year I chose the word discipline. So, among a few other things I did, I decided to train and run for a marathon. This year, I decided to choose a word that would bring me less physical pain, and the word I chose was intentional.
I wanted to challenge myself to be more intentional in my faith, my relationships, my time, my money and my work. If I am not careful I can so easily succumb to the lure of passivity, idly wasting time, mostly behind the screen of a smart phone. After a long day, I have temptation to zone out and turn my brain off. While that may be fine in moderation, it is something I have to fight against or it quickly becomes a habit.
Maybe you are the opposite.
You live a life constantly on the go. Moving from place to place, with barely getting a breath to say hello to your wife/husband in passing before you have to move into the next activity. From what I hear, that usually comes with the welcoming of children.
It is so easy to get caught up in the daily grind. The busyness of the day, week, even month can consume us that we can get lost in our tasks and to-dos that we don’t even know how we got to this point. The hustle and bustle culture that we live in is counterproductive to the idea that sometimes it is best to slow down and be intentional.
So between passivity and chaos, how do I make room for intentionality?
This has required me to step back, evaluate my daily life and really dig into how I can be more intentional and where. Here are a few questions/ areas that I have focused on.
How do I spend my time? If I honestlyanswered this question, I am sure there would be several convictions.
- Am I carving out daily time to spend with God?
- Am I spending quality time with family/friends? The key word here is quality.
- Am I being focused/productive with my work/business?
What are my goals? I will be the first to admit that I am guilty of setting a goal just to have a goal.
- What are my personal/professional goals?
- How do I want to grow spiritually, personally, and professionally.
- Have I set them in my mind or taken the time to write them out?
How are my relationships going? Whether it is personal or business, we must carve out time to spend intentionally with others.
- What does time with my family currently look like? What would I want it to look like?
- Have I gone the extra mile for any of my customers? Have I gotten to know my employees/coworkers?
- Have I checked on my friends who are going through a tough time?
In order to lead a more intentional life, we need to look to the one who led the most intentional life. Christ was intentional in the way He prayed, where He went, who He spent time with, and how He spoke to others. There was purpose and intent behind every step, word, and teaching.
I know there are several more areas I could dive into, but these are just a few that I have been focusing on. Whether it is business or personal, how we spend our time and energy are important. I desire to live a life that is full of intention and purpose that reflects Christ and brings glory to His name. I encourage you to be more intentional with your faith, your relationships, yourself and work and watch expectantly at what The Lord will do.