What are the clues that alert you when things are out of control in your life?
I have been writing lately about feeling overwhelmed. About having too many competing priorities. About needing to simplify. Needing to live more deliberately.
Today this issue has come into focus for me again. I believe that I have been, quite simply, living beyond my means.
We all understand the concept of living beyond your means in a financial sense. If you spend more than you earn then you continue to accumulate debt. At some point, unless your circumstances or habits change, the debt becomes crippling. You are unable to repay what you owe. You are bankrupt.
I believe that I’ve been living beyond my means in a much broader sense. Not only spending more money than I earn, but over stretching in order to have more, do more, be more.
I’ve become aware of this problem by observing that the important things are falling by the wayside. Despite all my heartfelt pleas for a simple life, I’ve fallen into the trap of spreading my attention so thin that central tasks are going undone. What a dreadful turn of events when my core task – a healthy, happy, safe and loved family – is getting buried under a myriad of less important things.
And so today I weeded the garden. Feeling discouraged and disappointed with myself, I saw a simple task that needed doing.
I’m not much of a gardener, but even I can pull grass out of a garden bed. Half an hour later or so, I had a big pile of grass, and a somewhat better looking garden. Somewhat.
I’ve still got a fair way to go, but what’s much more important is figuring out what I need to weed from my life. What things are acting like weeds in my life, choking the beautiful things that I want to grow?