Learning where to draw the line when you are overloaded (plus free printable)
Confession: I have this overloaded problem.
It’s a problem that can be deceptive; it looks right at first but then it turns into more problems.
It’s a problem that can be manipulative, making me think that I can handle it when I can’t.
It’s a problem that many women (and men) tend to have but sometimes don’t realize it’s a legitimate problem.
Want to know what the problem is?
My problem is that I am ambitious!
I find myself trapped in an overloaded mess more than I’d like to admit.
My problem is that I like to do a variety activities. However, too often I find myself in an overloaded, overwhelmed pickle of a situation. I trick myself into thinking that because I can do something well that I should do another project ON TOP of what I am already doing.
Here’s an example: I love art. I won’t be modest when I say that I can be good at it too. You see, it starts with a love of one thing and once that love blossomed I decided that I should research the option of selling my art. After all, I tend to be good at research too.
It’s a snowball effect.
So, I find myself very successful with the researching and end up with the information I needed to decided to go about selling my items on Etsy. So far so good!
But then Etsy starts going well rather quickly and I am excited! I decide to take it a step further and look up craft fairs and other vendor opportunities.
What happens next? I sign up for the craft fairs and soon my summer is wasted on a path that was supposed to be a side opportunity under my blog.
I began to notice that I was posting on my blog less and less.
I noticed that visitors began to dwindle away.
I noticed that even when I did write on my blog, my mind was elsewhere.
I’m sorry, this post seriously sounds like I am bragging but I’m not. Or at least I am in a respectful way. There are many women like me and you who try to add too much on their plate. We are ambitious, I get it! Ambition can be a great quality to have but sometimes our biggest strength can turn into our biggest weakens. When you notice your ambition becoming a weakness, it is time to learn how to draw that line and say no.
I believe that I can be decent at selling my art. I also believe that I can be a decent blogger. However, despite those positives, both items are a full-time job! When I start pursue both activities it begins to look like my overloaded plate during Thanksgiving dinner.
I love potatoes, corn, turkey, cranberries, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, and stuffing. What happens when I add all of those loves on my small paper plate? They begin to meld together into one big, bland taste. I can no longer taste the tangy sweetness of the sweet potatoes because my green bean casserole has begun to mix with it. My turkey tastes more like how my sweet potatoes should taste– sweet and tangy– because the cranberry sauce has stained its flavor.
If I had not been so determined and head strong….
If I had braved the line for the food table more than once…
I wouldn’t be in this problem of having nasty cranberry turkey. And that’s a big, big problem.
There has to be a line that is drawn.
Maybe you are unsure how that line is drawn. After all, it’s a line in the figment of our imagination but it’s oh so real when it begins to determine what route our life is going to take.
This is where God comes in.
What happens when our ambition turns to overloaded?
I let my ambition overtake myself. I let it control me! When I let something not of God control me I began to focus on earthly things that really have no purpose in my life. After earthly troubles began to control me, I noticed that I was beginning to be down-right terrible at being consistent in my prayer life. I was down-right terrible at asking God to show me where I needed to be.
I didn’t know what route to take because I did not have the ability to see ahead of my nose (and I have a small nose).
But God can.
God can see every curve, every bump, every road kill on our journey. He can see the heat waves and the blizzards. He can see the map of our life with all the potential routes. He also knows which route is the right one because He prepared it for us.
But we can’t expect God to write this route on a piece of paper. It’s not always in plain sight for us to see and for good reason; we need to seek God for His wisdom. “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5
And how do we ask God for something?
Through prayer! If you are stuck on the side of that imaginary road we have been talking about with a flat tire, you need to ask yourself “have I prayed about it as much as I have talked about it?”. If you have and this route is clearly where God intended you to be, by all means please don’t let me stop you.
But if, just if, this route is not where you’re supposed to be. If you were never intended to even give this route a second look, maybe it’s time to seek God for His wisdom.