This may be the longest tease ever played out on a personal blog.
Months ago I mentioned that I had found an incredible book that was significantly impacting my life. I heard about it on Dave Ramsey’s EntreLeadership Podcast and I have a tendency to read anything Dave recommends.
Overseas shipping was going to take FOREVER so I ordered it from iTunes and downloaded it onto Matt’s iPad. I took notes as I read and began looking forward to getting into a routine so that I could implement much of what I was reading.
The title of this book is 18 Minutes: Find Your Focus, Master Distraction, and Get the Right Things Done by Peter Bregman. The idea behind the book is that if we spend 18 minutes a day thinking about our lives and organizing our calendars we could ultimately be more productive and less stressed.
The more I read the more excited I became with the ideas I found in the book. I am going to go through a few of the main ideas Peter Bregman lays out and I hope, convince some of you to read the book on your own. His writing style is casual and very easy to read. His chapters are short and include entertaining examples.
I want to start the series with a quote from early in the book.
“Reducing your forward momentum is the first step to freeing yourself from the beliefs, habits, feelings, and busyness that may be limiting you.”
One prayer Matt and I have for our family is that we never find ourselves “busy.” We protect our calendar carefully and refuse to put too much on it. We know that there are seasons (usually only 2-3 months at a time) when we find ourselves running back and forth to tennis or soccer practice. We have, so far, required that all three of the bigs play the same sport at the same time. We’ve done everything in our power to get at least two boys on the same team to limit the number of practices/games we have to get to.
We feel that free time at home is infinitely more beneficial than all the extracurricular activities the world offers and the relationships we have with each other are more valuable than the events we could be attending if we chose to fill our calendars.
We feel that if we find ourselves saying that we are busy then we need to remove some things from our schedules. So when I read how Peter Bregman feels about busyness, I highlighted the quote and wrote it in a separate spiral-bound notebook. Busyness may be limiting you. Cut some things out of your schedule and see if you don’t find yourself more relaxed and considerably happier.
I know full well that this book was written to those in the corporate world. I realize that my life as a stay at home mom does not require professional reading of this nature but I obtained a tremendous amount of valuable information from it.
This series on my journey through 18 Minutes will share with you the highlights from the book and how I have implemented some of the author’s ideas in my homeschool or home management or how I hope to one day implement them.
One last thought about slowing down or cutting things out of your schedule:
“A brief pause will help you make a smarter next move.”
Have you ever felt like you you’re just moving from one decision to another and having to clean up the messes you make as you go along? If you slow down you will be able to make fewer mistakes, have more time in your day, and both of those positive results will lead you to having a less stressful life.
The next post will share the benefits of “pausing.” Stay tuned.