By Andrew Calabrese
This may seem like an obvious question, but I want you to think about it anyway. Are you ready? Here it is: what is your most valuable, non-replenishing resource? The answer is—ding, ding, ding—time. You can always make more money, but you cannot make more time.
If you want to have a strong marriage, raise strong, grounded children, and lead a God-honoring organization, you must learn to manage your time wisely. This is one of life’s most important principles. If you don’t manage your time well, then you will consistently allow the urgent to overwhelm the important.
Chances are, you know someone like this. This could even be characteristic of you. As long as the urgent takes priority over the important, you will never utilize your time and your life the way God intended you to. Since I am convinced that wouldn’t be your desire, what are some ways you can grow in managing your time better?
1. Schedule your values.
Prioritize what is most important to you. Good time management doesn’t mean you do more, it means you do more of what matters most. The difference between the values you embrace and the life you live equals the frustration you experience. So, determine your non-negotiables are, and put them on the calendar first.
You need to invest your best in what matters most. What are the things you value most that you are not doing? What are you going to do to change it?
2. Say ‘no’ to many small things to say ‘yes’ to a few big things.
For most people, the barrier to a meaningful life is not a lack of commitment, but over-commitment. Honestly, this was a tough lesson for me to learn. Just because you’re busy doesn’t mean you’re doing the right things. One preacher said, “The Devil won’t make you bad; he’ll make you busy!”
The question you want to ask yourself is not, “Can I do this,” but, “Should I do this?” Just because you can do something does not mean you should do something. I was really enlightened about this principle from Andy Stanley’s book entitled The Best Question Ever. In his book, he poses the question, “Is it wise?” He basically says, “In light of _____________, is this wise?” So, it may go like this:
“In light of the current needs for my family, is this wise?”
“In light of the type of person I want to become, is this wise?”
“In light of the type of marriage I want, is this wise?”
Louie Giglio said, “Whenever you say ‘yes’ to anything, there is less of you for something else. Make sure your yes is worth the less.” Maybe instead of always having a to-do list, you should consider forming a to-don’t list. So, what do you need to add to your “to-don’t” list?
Remember, if you want to have a strong marriage, raise strong, grounded children, and lead a God-honoring organization, you must learn to manage your time wisely. If you don’t manage your time well, then you will consistently allow the urgent to overwhelm the important, and that is not what God intended for your life.