14 March 2009

growth \ˈgrōth\ noun 1b: an abnormal proliferation of tissue (as a tumor)...

Oops. That's not what I wanted. Here we go:

grow \ˈgrō\ verb 1a: to spring up and develop to maturity

When I was a kid, my dad told me I wasn't allowed to drink coffee because it would stunt my growth. Whether or not that's actually true, I have no idea. (And while its been years since I've sprouted even a centimeter vertically, heaven knows that my current coffee consumption hasn't stunted any of my horizontal growth...not that that has anything to do with what I am talking about today. But hey, what's a blog from me without some tangential mind dump?)

But for the sake of today's topic, let's just use coffee as a growth-stunting metaphor. Awesome. I love coffee so much that I could probably manipulate it into a metaphor for just about anything.

What's the coffee in your life right now? There are many barriers to personal growth in my own life. Lack of discipline, worry, - just to name a few. I won't bore you with all of my personality flaws.

What can you do to eliminate those barriers?

I'll take a look at my own "coffee" (growth-stunters/barriers).

For example, for me, when it comes to a lack of discipline, I could be completely content every day to send the kids off to play and then lay on the couch all day and watch old episodes of The X-Files that I DVR'd off the Sci Fi Channel. Endless hours upon hours of Agents Mulder and Scully saving the world from impending extra-terrestrial overthrow. Does it get any better than that?

Therefore, I must force myself to use my time wisely. I have to get up earlier than I would like (those of you who know me realize that I loathe the morning hours. 5 o'clock? That time comes twice a day?) Which means I need to go to bed earlier - and that can really bum me out, because those are the hours that I catch up on all the things I should have been doing earlier in the day when I was watching The X-Files or messing around on Facebook (not really...well, maybe).

I have to make a strict schedule for myself and stick to it in order to become more disciplined. I have to write in my day planner when I intend to take a shower, make lunch, play with the kids, lay them down for naps/quiet time, etc. - seemingly mundane daily tasks that most people just do naturally. Does that seem extreme? Maybe a little, but it's a problem I have to overcome in order to grow in this area of discipline.

Sometimes I worry. I'm worried about something right now.

A few years ago, I read something from Come Thirsty by Max Lucado. He said,
"Regarding the things about which we fret:
40 percent never happen
30 percent regard unchangeable deeds of the past
12 percent focus on the opinions of others that cannot be controlled
10 percent center on personal health, which only worsens as we worry about it
8 percent concern real problems that we can influence

I don't think I can add anything to that. Breathe. Relax. When I look at the issue I'm currently worried about, it'll probably fit into the 40 percent that never happens category.

This weekend, I'm going to think of some more barriers to growth in my own life and focus on ways to eliminate them! Will you join me?

Next week: More growth...

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