Do your days need some breathing room?

You know how it goes, we schedule something for each day this week. Then one more really great opportunity comes along. Then the kids get invited to a last minute birthday party and you get an email about a makeup soccer game… Pretty soon your week has flown by and you hardly looked at each other!  Or maybe I’m the only one who does this! :blushing: See what Friday’s Friend, Steve Lambert, has for us today about overscheduling:

Did you ever watch your child running with a too-full cup of water or juice? How long did it take you to clean up the mess?  Spills are inevitable when we’re moving too fast and our cup is too full.   Life is like that, isn’t it? When our cups are too full and we are moving too fast we end up creating a mess that needs to be cleaned up.

We tend to schedule our lives until they’re spilling over at the brim allowing ourselves 20 minutes to get from the piano lesson to the dentist and promising to make a dinner for the nice family at church who just had a baby on the same day we’re already committed to having guests for dinner at our home.
To paraphrase one of the many popular Facebook posts of late, “I have too much spare time and wish I had more to do, said no mother, ever.”

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Our children need time to just “be” rather than always having to be “doing.”

Life may be like a box of chocolates for Forrest Gump, but I’ve found it to be more like an all you can eat buffet. And I’ve found that when I eat at one of those buffets I end up with dozens of different foods on my plate(s) but can’t really remember any of them when I’m finished; overstuffed and bloated. I’ve eaten so many different foods but I never really tasted any of them. They all just ran together on my plate and the meal ended up being thoroughly forgettable.
But when you sit down to a simple salad and a well prepared steak or seafood entree’ each bite melts in your mouth, the flood of flavors washing your palate in the refreshing taste of lemon, or basil, or garlic; mouth watering goodness to be savored and enjoyed… and remembered for a long time to come.
Are your days like that? Do you pack in so many activities in rapid fire that neither you nor your children really has time to enjoy or savor any of them? By bedtime have you already forgotten whatever you did this morning? Can you even remember the things you did last week that seemed so important at the time? Most of us can’t because we’ve overscheduled our lives.
And then the unexpected phone call or interruption occurs and we end up with a giant mess. We allowed ourselves no margin and once again we stumble while running with our cups too full.
Make time this week to look at your calendar and take intentional steps to simplify. Schedule one activity instead of two. Cancel several existing commitments that you knew you shouldn’t have made at the time. Plan an unclaimed hour or two between events so you have time to savor and enjoy each happening.
We want it all. It’s only natural. But as someone once said, “You can’t have it all and even if you could, where would you put it?”

Purpose to fill your cup less full beginning today.

Plan to walk from one event to the next with a margin of time built in to savor and enjoy the scenery and the companionship of those who are with you instead of scheduling yourself to race from one commitment to the next.
In America we’ve come to believe that if a little is good then more is better and “way too much” is too wonderful to even imagine. I’ve found the opposite to be true in my life. Have you? Sometimes less is more. Sometimes more is less. And if it’s true for you, it’s true for your children as well.
Steve Lambert
stevejaneA busy working father of two, Steve found himself “along for the ride” when his wife, Jane, first began homeschooling more than 30 years ago. But he quickly saw the benefit to Jane’s unique approach to teaching and became an enthusiastic cheerleader as he watched his children’s love of learning blossom. By the mid-nineties, Steve had become a popular author and speaker at homeschool conventions nationwide as his wife’s popular curriculum, Five in a Row, had also become a favorite in many homes across America. Today Steve remains involved in a variety of family-related ministries, public speaking and writing while enjoying the wonderful role of grandfather.  Find audio encouragement and more from Steve Lambert, Publisher of Five in a Row, over at

Heidi St John Guide to Daylight


About Heidi St. John

Heidi has been married to her husband Jay since 1989. Together they have seven children and two grandsons! The St. Johns' children range in age from early elementary school to adult. They have homeschooled the kids all the way through high school. Heidi is the founder of MomStrong International, an online community of women learning to live biblically in an unbiblical world together .

4 thoughts on “Do your days need some breathing room?

  1. I loved the image of the too full cup and the going too fast. I also felt the resonance with the wanting too much with no place to put it. I have simplify on the top of my list now and I will have to do this fast to make my margin breathable again.

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