Today was officially the last day of my internship in which I was working with out client therapy for children, most often helping with summer therapy groups. Today was also the day that the organization held a big end-of-the-summer shebang for all of the kids that participated in summer programs so I spent most of my last day in the sun trying to convince kids to play my carnival game and trying to pep them up. (I think I got stuck manning on of the un-cool game so it took lots of coaxing to get them to come. Except for some little kids who kept returning anytime I took a break to sit in the shade.)
I realized today, as I closed that chapter of my life, (way to be dramatic–especially since I now work at the same organization) how much I appreciated my summer there and how much value my time spent there had to me. I cannot believe that summer is over and I am heading back to Kenyon for my last year this weekend.
So these next few days are a crucial, crucial moment. They are the time to pause, collect oneself, reflect, and peruse intent and game plan for the next chapter of life. I cannot say for certain that this is a necessary part of life for everyone, but I think it would help most.
If I just stumble on into this fall without gathering myself to make an intentional plan, I will fall flat on my face. There is always the chance of that anyway. If I just try to fumble my way through all my duties, I know that I will be disappointed in the result.
Every time I feel that I am stepping into a new phase of my life, I actually make a list of my roles and think about how much time I am going to give them and how I can successfully divide that time.
For example, coming into this new semester, I will be a new wife, a student, an employee in two different jobs, a leader in my Christian student group, a peer counselor, a mentor, and the treasurer of the advocacy group against human trafficking at my school. How will I juggle all of it. Very carefully and only by the Grace of God. I only have a chance if I keep myself fully grounded.
These roles may sound like a lot, and you may think that being a senior is busy or certain recent choices I have made have complicated my roles such as getting a job and a husband. But in actuality, I have always loaded on my plate more than I probably should, and I have always taken stock of the different responsibilities I have and how I am going to handle them.
I do this not only to look at everything wholistically but also to remind myself of the focus I will need and the resolve to say no to many of the options, opportunities, and roles not on the list. Because in order to be successful and intentional about the things I do, I must say no to many other things.
If you go to school with me, you will have noticed that you will not find me in a party or doing anything really that does not sit squarely with my mission and intention for myself, my time, and my season in life. I’m not saying I am perfect at this or that this sort of rigor is for everyone.
But I do think this sort of intention is necessary in order to not lose track of time and realize that you aren’t as far along in your goals as you’d like to be or planned to be. And that is why I am a woman of defined and intended roles. I look at these roles and check to make sure that I am certain that this is what I think that God intends for me to do with this segment of my life and this is what I have chosen to give precedence. No wayward habits or sidetracks will steal my limited time to do what I can for God’s glory.
That’s the way I have to be. How do you get things done and handle your different roles and goals in your life? Are you more of a drifter or a set scheduler? How do you feel when you notice you got off course from your plans?