Kathy Carlton Willis knows a lot about living under pressure. I've followed her and her husband during a difficult year, and she focused on the Lord to keep her faith strong. Kathy also knows a lot about the stress of burn-out, and in this Spiritual Life and Self-care UPGRADE, she shares wise counsel.
"Sometimes I wonder if my efforts will lead to me hearing 'Well Done' or being burnt out," Kathy said. "Let's look at the recipe for finding the balance."
I (Dawn) think this is such a vital topic in our busy, busy world. Several years ago, I almost totally lost my ministry because of a health issue related to burn out. Loving friends did question all I was doing at the time, but I wish someone had pulled me aside and asked tough accountability questions about my priorities and why I was doing what I was doing.
Kathy continues …
In most recipes, the difference between making a crispy creation and a delightful dish is in two variables. Time and temperature. (Just like the old phone service you could call for that information!)
Getting the best out of life for God’s BIG glory without burning out requires those same two variables. Let’s take a look at them.
- How long do you spend on the things that require your attention during your waking hours?
- How long do you sleep and rest between periods of busyness?
- Do you have time to add something new to your schedule, or do you need to delete something before you add anything else?
- How hot does your passion burn for your specific projects?
- How consistent are your efforts before you need to take a break?
- Do you get bored easily with the project?
Oftentimes we evaluate the ingredients of a recipe to determine if it will be a success, when the real issue is to make sure we have the time and temperature set correctly.
It’s wise to ask God to lead in adding to or taking away from your workload. Seek Him to reveal what activities tickle your taste buds. And follow His lead when it’s time to take it easy for a bit.
If it’s been a while since you had a day you could label BLESSED REST, then you probably need a day like that!
Overdo or overdue?
Are you on the verge of burning out? I realized it was time to slow down and relax when I wrote the following paragraph to my mom:
“I want one day to relax and do what I want, when I want.
I haven’t had one of those in a LONG time. Overdo.
Sort of my Merry Christmas present to myself!”
See the problem? I spelled “overdue,” overdo. And that was the problem.
I was overdoing it—rest was overdue!
We rarely will admit we’re burning out until it’s too late. The toast is already burnt. We’ve pushed the time and temperature too long, too hot.
And you know what happens when you let the toast burn? It stinks! It stinks when we push ourselves too hard, as well. We’re no good for anyone, at that point.
Let the toaster cool off and add more bread. You rest, then decide what God wants you to add or subtract from your life schedule to fuel your passions and feed your purpose without overdoing it!
And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. (Galatians 6:9 KJV)
His master said to him, “Well done, good and faithful servant. You have been faithful and trustworthy over a little, I will put you in charge of many things; share in the joy of your master.” (Matthew 25:21 AMP)
When you seek Jesus to be Lord of your life (Master) and are faithful in His instructions, seeking to be effective for the success of the Kingdom and not merely personal success, you will hear Him exclaim about your work, “Well done!”
Where are you headed—to hearing “Well done” or being burnt out?
Kathy Carlton Willis shines for God, reflecting His light as a speaker at writer's conferences and women's retreats, and as an author - contributing to three books and writing hundreds of columns and articles online and in print publications. She wrote Grin with Grace with AMG Publishers and has several books releasing over the next few years. She and her husband Russ live in Texas with Jazzy, their hilarious Boston Terrier.