My soul is restless:
My soul is restless. It is anxious. I have a deeply rooted sense of peace about some big life choices coming up (I’m going back to school to get my masters), but I am still deeply anxious in my soul. It’s a deep stress that eats at me constantly. My brain is constantly over worked with this peril and pressure. I am emotionally, physically, and spiritually exhausted because I cannot turn my brain off! You’ve had nights like this right?
I have poured my soul over to God again and again. I have begged and pleaded with Him to give my heart and soul rest. I’ve spent many a sleepless night praying for answers and relief, yet none comes. I read the Bible and meditate on it.
Still, no peace comes.
Why do we go through times of anxiety and restlessness? Why are there times of peace and times of turmoil? Honestly, I can’t say that I know, much less have any idea of how to find that peaceful pasture again. I know that the Bible has the answers if we dig deep enough and take the time to listen to that still, small voice.
2 Corinthians 4:8-9, “We are hard-pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”
Proverbs 3:4-6, “Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
Philippians 4:12-13, “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”
Not everyone is religious, I get that. Not everyone believes in a higher power, I get that too. There can be a spiritual side to stress and anxiety and a physical/environmental side to stress too.
When the praying doesn’t seem to help right away there are some physical and environmental things that we can do to try to find that physical rest when the spiritual rest is out of reach for the moment.
Cut out extra events in your life:
I’m talking about cutting out the events that we all know we want to say no too, but don’t because you’re afraid of what your friends will say. Cut out all the extra crap from our lives. I’m talking about all the “parties”, (doterra, pampered chef, lularoe, Scentsy, etc, etc, etc.) If you don’t have the budget to buy something and/or don’t need anything, then don’t go! Spend the time with your family. Besides, when we go to these parties we feel obligated to purchase something no matter how much they say that no purchase is necessary. It blows our budget if we are not careful. We don’t spend unallocated funds from 100% of the parties we don’t attend 😉 I’m not saying you can’t have any fun in life! We all need downtime with our girlfriends. Perhaps we can find a cheaper, more time efficient way to do that, though.
Cut out the extra clutter from your house:
We all know that we have entirely too much STUFF! I don’t know about you, but the more cluttered my house is, the more cluttered my brain is. I recently went through Ruth Soukup’s books(Uncluttered, 31 days of living well and spending zero, 31 days to a clutter free life) on de-cluttering your life and home. Her system was a LIFE SAVER! I got rid of so much stuff and was able to streamline my home. I didn’t realize how much my extra physical possessions was taking up mental space too. Besides, if you donate your items to a program like the Vietnam Veterans Association, then you get a tax deduction on your items.
Cut out the extra noise:
I will be the first to say that I love Netflix and Hulu. Some days I have my iPad going constantly. On the days where it’s not being used I’m am sucked in by social media and making phone calls. I have a hard time being in the quiet, but that’s not conducive to listing to that still, small voice is it? The Lord talks when we are quiet and listening. I have a hard time resting in the quiet of my day. Granted, I have 2 boys and a dog so my house is rarely quiet, but I think you get my drift. We need to force ourselves to be in the quiet. We need to make that special time to just rest in the Lord and LISTEN!
Cut out the un-organization:
I am all about having lazy days with nothing to do, but us moms rarely have an opportunity to do that, right? I have fallen in LOVE with my Living Well Spending Less Planner. By keeping it in a handy location it has helped me remember what I need to do each day! It has helped me sort my day into a logical progression of events that make sense. I only leave the house when I have a clear path laid out in front of me. I have a plan! Another aspect of scheduling is a new concept called Block Scheduling. Check out this link for more info on that! This way to planning my days makes sure that I’m not using all my time on just ONE area that needs to be accomplished. When that block of time is up, I move onto the next one regardless of if I’m finished or not. It helps me keep all my fires at a very manageable level.
Cut out the mess:
Cleaning the house stinks. Keeping on top of chores stinks too. I found this neat cleaning chart on Pinterest that I have utilized for a while and it has greatly streamlined my house cleaning and changed my frantic cleaning moments into 30 ish minutes of house cleaning daily and my house looks tidy often! One confession regarding cleaning, however, is this: I recently purchased what I call a “robot vacuum slave”, meaning I purchased an iRobot Roomba 650. Yes, it’s pricey. We got some unexpected income and put most in savings save for the $399 that “clearly” costs. Can you tell my 7 years old named my robot slave? My husband has been begging me to purchase one, as he had one in a past life. It took me about 2 years to come to terms with myself as a wife and mother to buy a silly robot vacuum. I tell you what, though, it is worth every penny! It runs when I tell it too and cleans where I tell it too and does a pretty darn good job. It doesn’t deep clean, but I do that maybe once a month to clean up the baseboards and it’s perfect.
This video just makes me giggle. I’ve been this mom way too often. I’ve never understood why I feel like my house must look un-lived in when people visit?! Seriously, I’m not the only one who does this occasionally right?!
Cut out anything that keeps you from your important things(family):
One of my favorite quotes is by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: “Things which matter most, must never be at the mercy of things which matter least.”
This quote hurts my soul in such a good way. So often I put my family at the mercy of my schedule. My life ought not to work this way! I made some drastic changes as to how I approach things that take up my time. I ask myself a few questions:
- Is it required that I go? This would include things like church, doctor’s appointments, and your child’s school Christmas Party. If the answer is yes, then you go. If the answer is no, then ask the following questions.
- Does it get in the way of time with my family? I would put things like the Tupperware, Lularoe, and pampered chef parties. I do like to attend these every once and a while, but it just seems like everyone plans their different parties in the same week, doesn’t it? Something will have to give. My time with my family is much more important than buttery soft leggings and more mixing bowls.
- Does it get in the way of my time with the Lord? I’m sure we’ve all stayed up too late on a Saturday evening because well, it’s Saturday! It’s our night to party, or go out, or [insert event here]. But when our alarms go off on the Lord’s Day we are too tired to crawl out of bed right? We surely can find a happy medium to enjoying our Saturday nights, and not compromising our time or worship on Sunday. Try setting an alarm off when you need to head home!
- Does it get me closer to my goals and dreams? Simply put, if the answer is no, then don’t feel like you have to bother with it.
I know you can make the changes in your life to make it a much more calm, positive environment. I’m still on this path of discovery, but I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. Never stop praying for clarity and guidance during this road. We don’t have to stay in this restless season forever. It is just that; a season.
Let me know who these tips work for you!