Deliberate Reset: Trading Chaos for Clarity
I’ve been around long enough to know that growth and maturity usually don't happen when I'm living in my comfort zone.
Just because I know it doesn’t mean I like it.
Thing is, my life has been uncomfortably different since I embarked on the deliberate book project.
I slow-rolled my consulting career. I paused my Narrow Gate Wellness ministry. At times, I felt like I paused my entire life so I could get deliberate to the finish line.
And now...the book is done.
So what’s next? For the past few months, I’ve been overwhelmed trying to answer that question.
It’s not like I’m sitting around doing nothing. I have more opportunities to invest my time than I have healthy margin.
Consulting is slowly ramping up. I’m involved in a couple of women’s ministries that I’m pretty excited about. Life, of course, is happening. And in many ways, even though the book is finished, my journey to share the deliberate message is just beginning. In fact, the current deliberate to-do list is a mighty one that spans the next several months, if not years.
It’s all good stuff. I am deeply grateful to have breathing room and new choices, because it’s been a long hard road to get to this point. At the same time, with countless options swirling on a daily basis, I'm constantly asking myself the million dollar question: Where do I focus when I feel so unfocused?
Asked. Then answered.
I focus on Jesus.
I realize this might sound lofty…or foreign…or obvious…depending on where you are in your faith journey. But I know from experience:
When I make it an intentional practice to get out of my head and into Jesus’ heart for me—when I take a deliberate reset to focus on him—that’s when things shift. That’s when the fog begins to clear. That’s when my faith begins to rise. And that’s when I begin to get clarity on the next thing while learning to trust God with the whole thing.
Friends, I’ve often heard that we can’t confuse motion with progress. In living the deliberate life, sometimes the greatest way to make progress is to stop the motion...take our eyes off the overwhelm...and shift our focus to the truth:
We have hope.
We are greatly loved.
We can let go of the past.
2 Corinthians 5:17
We can be confident in our future.
We can rest.
Nothing is impossible with God.
I know life gets overwhelming. I know it’s hard to focus on one thing in the midst of a hundred things. I also know that where I focus matters because it impacts my attitude, my productivity, and the wisdom I need to steward my time wisely. Things are still swirling around me but, when I return my focus to Jesus, I open the door to clarity and am less distracted by the chaos of the swirl.
Small steps forward: When overwhelm sets in, no matter where it’s coming from, choose to practice a deliberate reset for 3-5 minutes. Go to a quiet place. Maybe step outside and take a deep breath. Or find a small space in your home to lay down, close your eyes and listen to a favorite song. Or maybe just close your eyes where you are and breathe. Whatever allows you to quiet your mind…come off of autopilot…and shift your focus to God’s promises and the love of Jesus…go do it. Yes, you can.
Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine.
Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit;
apart from me you can do nothing.