If you had walked into my house a few days ago, you would have found me crying at the kitchen table.
Every year, we get to December and I am equally excited about CHRISTMAS (!!!) and about everything the new year holds. Fresh starts, new opportunities, a blank slate.
This year, though, while I’m excited about all of those things, I’m also still processing this last year. This very full, very unexpected last year.
Our family has seen a lot of changes in the last 6 months in particular. We made a big move across the state with only three weeks’ warning. We changed our entire plan for schooling our children in this season. We started new jobs and launched new products.
It’s been really good. And also, just really hard.
Lately, all the change has really gotten to me, and I’ve felt almost desperate to find my footing again. To really and truly nail down our new normal as a family. The truth is, I hate feeling out of control, and there have been very few things I’ve been in control of this year.
But a few days ago, my PowerSheets showed up in the mail. And I felt just one thing – RELIEF.
If you’ve never heard of PowerSheets, let me give you a quick overview. PowerSheets are a very unique collection of goal setting worksheets. And when I say unique, I mean it. These are not your average “what do you want to do this year” goals – PowerSheets help you dig deep & figure out what really matters to you, and WHY. And then? PowerSheets gives you a step-by-step process for making (and tracking!) progress on your goals. (You can see my in-depth review of PowerSheets here.)
So, my set of PowerSheets showed up last week, and I felt relieved. Not because PowerSheets are magical, or have the power to totally change my life. (I mean, they are kinda magical, but they don’t have any actual superpowers.) 😉 No, I was relieved for another reason.
What makes PowerSheets so, well, POWERFUL for me is that they give me a space to actually sit with the mess of thoughts and feelings and issues that have been swirling around in my head and finally SORT IT ALL OUT. As busy moms, it’s just rare that we have time to sit and process things – we’re just always on the go and life has to keep moving. But PowerSheets allow me to sit and process what’s been going well in my life, and what hasn’t. They ask great questions that make me think deeply and pray about things I didn’t even know I was dealing with.
This last year has been busy. So busy. We have worried about time and money, we have seriously lacked quality time as a family, we have been unsettled and unsure, we have eaten take-out dinners in front of the TV more times than I can count. And I’ve just been rolling with it because I have been too tired, too busy to actually stop and see the problem, much less make any changes.
But I have definitely been feeling the stress. And I desperately needed to slow down, refocus on my priorities, and pray about what the Lord wanted for me & my family, moving forward.
Why Priorities Matter
If you’ve been around here for any length of time, you know that I’m big on setting priorities. I’m a firm believer that making time for what matters most starts with actually figuring out what matters most to us!
It’s SO easy for life to just sweep us along, directionless and floundering. But setting priorities that we can build our life around is like building yourself a boat with a GPS system intact. You’ve got a direction and you know where you’re going, even when uncontrollable events blow you off course.
I have admittedly let my priorities slide, lately. I could give you a million excuses as to why that’s happened, but there are really only two reasons – I’ve been tired, and I’ve been trying to do everything on my own. That little combination is always, always a surefire prescription for burn-out, which is where I’m finding myself right now.
That’s why PowerSheets were such a relief for me. Sitting down with my PowerSheets (something the Lord has consistently used in my life to shake some sense into me), and praying over our family helped me see a way out of the stress. Working through this process of looking back & realizing what my priorities are (and how far I’ve drifted away from them in the last few months) has helped me immeasurably. And instead of beating myself up for mixing up my priorities lately, I was able to pray through that, ask forgiveness, and move forward with a much clearer understanding of the Lord’s design for my family and my life.
Setting Priority-Based Goals
I am definitely a Type-A person. I like lists and checkboxes and accomplishments. And generally, this is my biggest downfall – I am often too quick to focus on productivity at the sacrifice of relationships.
That’s not what I want for my family. I do want them to have a solid work ethic, and to value a job well done. But I never want them to learn that their worth lies in what they DO. That’s a lie that I’m still working hard to quiet in my own life, and I don’t want to pass it on to my kids.
So, when it comes to setting goals for myself and my family, I have to come back to my priorities. Faith first. Then family, fitness, and then work. For me to actually make the most important things happen, I have to stick to the things that matter the most. This is like, the most basic of basic ideas, but it’s often so difficult to implement in a world that values productivity and accomplishments.
PowerSheets actually help me establish this correct ordering of priorities and goals. They are designed to help you dive deeply in to your priorities FIRST, and then set goals that reflect the things that matter most to you.
Because of this, PowerSheets help me pinpoint exactly how I want to move forward, based on what I know is most important in this season. And then, they take my hand and walk me through the little-by-little progress I can make each day, week, and month.
Progress, Not Perfection
One of my favorite things that Lara Casey, the creator of PowerSheets, says, is this: Progress, not perfection. By keeping our priorities and goals in mind every day, and using our PowerSheets to keep tabs on how we’re working on these goals throughout the month, we can actually make progress, instead of staying in that frustrated, busy, distracted place where it’s so easy to get stuck.
The Tending List that comes with your PowerSheets is the perfect way to track your progress throughout the month, each month. And this year? You can actually tear your Tending List out of the PowerSheets! It’s perforated, so you can easily keep it in your planner, or put it up on your fridge – anywhere where it’s in plain sight. (Brilliant, right?!)
And so, if you’d walked into my kitchen last week and found me crying, you now know why – it was relief. I am grateful to have a tool that helps me get down to the nitty gritty of what’s really going on in my life. It’s sort of like having a therapist…but a whole lot cheaper! 😉 By working through the carefully crafted worksheets, I was able to see a clear view of what I really needed to be focusing on in this season, and then the Lord helped show me a way forward. Small changes that will keep our eyes on the most important things. (More on my focus for this next year in a later post!)
If you need a little direction, or just a space to sort out the happenings of the past year, & gain some clarity for the year ahead, I highly recommend getting a set of PowerSheets. They. Are. AMAZING.
What You Need To Know:
- PowerSheets are available in the One-Year Workbook & Six-Month Workbooks. I got one of each – the year-long workbook for personal & family goals, and the six-month for business goals. You can totally combine it all into one, but I am experimenting with splitting them up this year.
- STICKERS. This year you can get sticker books to go along with your PowerSheets. And, um, they are amazing. You should just get the stickers no matter what.
- Grab the Couple’s Guide! I snagged one of these to go along with my PowerSheets, and crossed my fingers that Jon wouldn’t just roll his eyes at me. I kid you not, when he saw it on the table yesterday he picked it up and said, “This looks cool. We should do this.” Jaw. On. Floor. So get one – your guy will think it looks cool!
- While you’re over at the Cultivate What Matters shop, there are a couple of other products I love love love – the Write The Word Journals, and the Handbook For Life. Use that 15% off code to stock up on meaningful gifts! (Even if they are gifts for yourself! It’s Christmas. That totally counts.)
- With your purchase of PowerSheets, you also get access to the PowerSheets Community – a forum of women just like you, hoping to start making imperfect progress on the things that matter most. You’re gonna love it there!
If you’re ready to throw away the idea of traditional goal-setting, and start setting meaningful goals that are based on your core priorities, I can’t recommend PowerSheets highly enough. They are one of my absolute favorite tools for the new year! Get your PowerSheets HERE!
Still looking for a planner? I’ve designed The Organized Life Planner to pair perfectly with PowerSheets, giving you a space to track habits & goals that you’re working on each week! Check it out here!
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