Deep down, inside, most of us want to be perfect.
THE DESIRE FOR PERFECTION …
We instinctively know that our home is heaven where we will be with God. It’s written on our hearts. And God is perfect. So being perfect, or at least, to be around things that are perfect, gives us the sense of being with God right now.
Of course, none of us is perfect (not now … not yet). And it’s likely that most of us don’t even measure up to the standard of being “good” most of the time either (see Lk 18:19). Nevertheless, we need not despair.
LIFE’S FRUSTRATIONS …
Work can be frustrating. Our jobs can be exasperating at times. And even family life can be the source of anxiety. Many people feel as if they simply have too many things on their plate. They can’t get it all done. And the truth is, they’re right!
One of the secrets to being successful and doing good is shifting your focus to just a few things and then, doing them well. We like to tell our friends:
“Do less better!”
Chances are, you will make a greater contribution to society doing just a few things very well than you ever would doing many things poorly.
SAYING NO …
When you think about that for even just a moment, it really does make a lot of sense.
“I agree,” you might say:
“But I need to learn how to say NO first.”
Well, that’s simply not true.
SAYING YES …
The truth is, if you’re feeling overwhelmed and find yourself wishing you hadn’t taken on so many things from other people, your problem is not in saying NO. It’s actually in saying YES.
“Everything is NO until you say yes.”
You are never obligated by someone asking you. You are only obligated when you say YES. If you say NO or if you say NOTHING at all, you are not obligated. So the problem is in saying YES and not in saying NO.
A SIMPLE FRAMEWORK …
Here’s a simple framework. Ask yourself these four (4) questions each day:
- Who am I today?
- Where do I plan to go today?
- What are my priorities (both goals and values) for today?
- What one thing MUST I do with this day?
Once you know the answers to those four questions, you’re ready when someone approaches you to take on a new project or to do them “a favor.” How does this request compare with:
- Your identity (who you are)?
- Your plans?
- Your priorities? Your values?
- The ONE thing you really need to do today?
A WORD OF ADVICE …
Be flexible. Consider both your priorities and your values. Priorities can be changed, but you should never shift priorities unless a personal value is challenged.
LEARN TO SAY YES AND BE SURE TO PRAY …
Get ready to do less and to do it much better. Learn to say YES, and you’re on your way! But in all things, don’t forget to pray. Let the Lord guide your steps.
Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone.” (Lk 18:19)