Yesterday I had the opportunity to join my oldest daughter for the second half of her field day. Remember field day? I used to love that as a kid, kind of wish we had one as an adult. Imagine, an entire day of playing outside, competing in contests and eating popsicles. It’s the perfect trifecta. Of course, I had to move some things around on my schedule, beg out of a meeting, and do a little extra prep work to make it happen, but the point is, I was there. Promise made, promise kept. When I arrived Riles ran up to me and hugged me right there on the field and didn’t let go for what seemed to be a long time. As she took my hand to walk me to our next activity she asked me, what took you so long to get here? The things they focus on right?
As a father I’m learning that impact matters way more than intent. I can’t just say something and not follow through. It’s one of the reasons why in my efforts to live a life with fewer regrets (because let’s face it, we all have some), I have to be proactive about planning the commitments I make to my daughters. I also have to be honest with myself (and those around me) about my limitations. Just this past week, their gymnastics performances fell on mother’s day weekend which was a problem for me. Usually, I spend the Saturday before mother’s day with my mom in South Carolina (it also doubles as her birthday celebration), and then Sunday with my wife. Well this year, in order to maintain multiple competing commitments to each of the women in my life (there’s a lot of them!) I had to do some schedule finagling, but I managed to make it happen with God’s provision.
That’s a typical pattern in my life. Things do tend to fall into place, but it takes some effort on my part to first choose the right things, and by the grace of God the rest comes together. There’s a quote from the book The One Thing by Gary Keller that perfectly captures my point: Put yourself together, and your world falls into place. When you bring purpose to your life, know your priorities, and achieve high productivity on the priority that matters most everyday, your life makes sense and the extradorinaiy becomes possible.
The way it’s written it seems simple: put yourself together and boom everything makes sense. We all know that in real life, it’s hard work daily putting ourselves together and keeping ourselves there. That’s why it’s so important for us to have dedicated quiet alone think time, to recharge and renew our minds from the daily grind. It’s what keeps me sane and focused. This is our commitment to keeping ourselves healthy as leaders. Then provision comes in the form of clearer priorities, better decisions, and aligned impact in the lives of our families.