See if you relate to this: I’m supposed to attend a work-related meeting on Thursday, take Mom to the store and to see Dad in the Memory Care place on Friday, (and make sure I have the car that can also hold her walker); the kids to their sports events on Saturday, then in between all of that, do the laundry, clean the house, shop for groceries, prepare meals and oh, go to the dentist, take my son to the doctor, and work Monday through Thursday at the hospital. Oh, I almost forgot. I said yes twice: once to a friend’s request to provide meals for a family at church for Friday and Saturday and the other to take care of a cat while the owner’s away for a few days. And, well that’s just this week’s schedule……
I just read a few chapters of a book titled: The Best Yes, Making Wise Decisions in the Midst of Endless Demands, by Lysa Terkeurst. It’s already held my attention (which takes some doing since I’m not an avid reader) and I haven’t even gotten to chapters like: ‘Analysis paralysis,’ ‘But what if I say no and they stop liking me?’
Whether we’re caregiving, or about to, or just feeling overwhelmed with all that we have to do… (and it’s not just women who feel this way by any means), the book is an excellent read. As for me, I have always had a hard time saying no. I am getting better; but it took me too many years to get to the point of not feeling guilty when I do say no. I like the book’s title because I would really like to be someone who when she says yes… it’s ‘the best yes” she can give.
To get the full details, I wholeheartedly recommend the book to you. But for now, here are some “struggles” the author describes:
- “I don’t want to miss out on opportunities or mess up relationships by disappointing people.
- I struggle with worrying about what others think of my decisions.
- I struggle with wondering if my inability to do it all will make my kids wind up on a therapist’s couch one day.
- I struggle with how I can’t quite figure out how other women seem to do it all.
- I struggle with feeling like I’m going to let God down.”
The author also describes what she feels in her mind…..I’m tired, I’m distracted, I’m disappointed in myself. I feel slightly used and more than slightly used up.”
Most of us don’t admit these struggles because we don’t want to admit what seems like a type of defeat or endless stress we have a hard time coping with. I mean we have it all together… or at least we lead others to think so. And, I really think this happens more often when our daily lives are combined with providing various levels of caregiving for aging parents, or even a spouse or other family member.
So what does the author say about what The Best Yes is? Here are a few hints, but the book will fill you in:
- “Don’t miss your assignment. Sometimes God provides invitations for us. But we’re so busy we miss them.” Ever passed people at work or at the store and not greeted them? It may have been just what they needed. It’s not that we don’t care; it’s just that we’re too busy.
- Don’t let other people’s requests dictate the decisions we make.” [This is when I fail most often] What can I do? “I have to change my approach to the way I make decisions.”
- “Block out time to do the thing you always wanted to do, but never planned for.” God has given us 24 hours a day. It is possible to take 1, 2 maybe 3 hours a day to free ourselves from the “bonds of busy.” We may discover that we are blessed, but more importantly, that we might be a blessing to others.
Did I suggest getting the book: The Best Yes? It truly is well written and interwoven with loving, personal, interesting and spiritual inspiration.
“Underwhelm your schedule so that God can overwhelm your soul”