Find Margin and Gain Control of Your Schedule 

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Do you ever feel like there are not enough hours in the day to get everything done? Silly question. If you do not take control of your schedule, then your schedule will control you. This kind of living inevitably leads to more stress, a neglected family life, poor health, and ineffective work. It could be that you are a victim of disorganization or perhaps you like to feel needed and important, so you do more than you should. But like the apostles discovered in the book of Acts, an out of control schedule leads to a feeble and immobilized mission. The same is true with your job and family. 

Here are a few principles that will help you get control of your schedule and be more effective in work and family life.

Prioritize

In the book of Acts the apostles prioritized prayer, studying the Word of God, and preaching. They realized that they could not bear the demands of the ministry alone. There were some things that mattered more than others. You must set priorities, or you will not get the most important things done. There are a few things that only you can do so focus on those things and give everything else away. If you fail to prioritize then you will become a slave to the demands of your relentless schedule.

Simplify

You simply can’t do everything. It is insane to think that you can keep on adding to your schedule without ever eliminating anything. If you are going to exercise, you have to prioritize it in your schedule by adding a time and a plan. You also have to eliminate something so that exercise time can take its place. Don’t be deceived into thinking that you can keep on adding without ever simplifying as well. That is not a sustainable plan. You must learn the power of no so you can experience the joy of yes. 

Embrace a less is more philosophy

By doing less you can accomplish more. Focus on your strengths so you can do what you have been called to do. Do not rob your family or work of your energy because you have failed to prioritize. By doing fewer things you can accomplish more. Your family will thank you for it and you will be healthier as well.

Don’t feel guilty

Once you have decided what to simplify, what to keep, and what to get rid of, you do not need to feel guilty about your choices. You have made a wise choice. You have chosen to say “no” to some things so you can say “yes” to more important things. You can’t do everything, so do not feel guilty about what God has called you to do. 

It is OK if not everyone agrees

Not everybody will agree with your choices. That is OK. My dad used to tell me that if somebody was kicking me in the tail it meant that I was in front, and they were behind me. 

Invest in yourself

A schedule that is so hectic that you don’t have time to invest in yourself or your family is a schedule that will eventually destroy you. Invest in rest. Invest in exercise. Invest in worship and serving. Invest in your family. Invest in learning. These investments pay immeasurable dividends. Unless you learn to invest in yourself, your health, your family, your relationships, your mental health, and your relationship with God will suffer. 

Take some time to examine your schedule. Is it serving you or are you serving it? The answer to that question determines your future!