Week 4: Faithful Finish Lines Balance Family Priorities
Week 4: Sara’s Video Message
Week 4 Eating for Energy and Prayer
Click here to download the Eating for Energy Goal as a printable: Eating for Energy Week 4
Week 4 Eating for Energy Goal: Healthy Beverages
This week’s Eating for Energy Goal is to focus on choosing healthy beverages — ideally those without calories. Explore what happens and how you feel when you choose not to have soft drinks, juices, mochas, lattes, or other beverages with calories. Alcohol is included on this list. Should you choose to forgo all of these items for the entire week? It’s up to you.
Artificially sweetened drinks like diet colas, Crystal Light, etc. are not included in this list because they do not have calories, and these are a hotly debated issue. If you drink these beverages, experiment with drinking them less or going without them for a day or two and see how you feel. Consider going without them for the week as an experiment.
Instead drink tea, coffee (in moderation), and water. Flavor with lemon, lime, or cucumber if desired.
A word about drinking water. You should drink water when you are thirsty. God designedy our body to have excellent systems that recognize what you need. Tuning in to your signals is the best way. You do not need to drink massive amounts of water as is often recommended with many diet systems. It is true that many people are slightly dehydrated because they get busy and go without drinking for long periods of the day, but it’s not necessary to drink bottles and bottles of water per day. This can actually flush needed electrolytes out of your system.
This program is making the suggestion to focus on the reduction of beverages with calories for ONE WEEK – not forever. This is an experiment for what works for your body and how you feel. This isn’t about deprivation that will lead to future binging. Don’t think of this as a punishment or “I can’t have Diet Coke all week!” or “I’m going to miss my wine with dinner on Saturday night!” You can have wine with dinner if you choose to do so. You are an adult and no one is going to stop you if that is the choice you decide to make. Instead, you are making the choice not to, just for this one short, set period of time. You are trying something in order to learn and grow.
This is also a chance to offer this as a sacrifice to God. Your whole life is a sacrifice to God, in service to Him. It might seem quite ridiculous to offer Diet Coke up to God, but nothing is too big or too small. If this is that important to you, it matters to Him. This is a chance to offer Christ your whole life and see what He does with your offering. You will be amazed with the blessings that are outpoured with your offerings to Him – sometimes immediately and sometimes far into the future.
Remember, what this is not about is guilt. If you decide to have a glass of wine, what that means is that you had a glass of wine. It doesn’t mean you lack faith, lack will power, or are not a good Christian. Instead, you say to yourself, “Interesting. Now, I had chosen not to have drinks with calories today. Then I decided to have a glass of wine tonight. I wonder why I made that choice?” Look at the situation as if you were an outside observer. Learn.
Click here to download Week 4 Prayer as a printable: FFL Prayer Week 4
Day 1: How the Heck am I Going to Fit This In? (Sunday)
How on earth am I going to squeeze one more thing into my calendar?
Between work, kids, spouse, house, chores, and the list goes on and on, fitting in regular exercise, not to mention time to prepare healthy foods, seems like an overwhelming task.
I will spare you the lectures about how we all have the same amount of hours in the day, if you really wanted this you would find a way, you find time for the things that really matter, and all that jazz.
You are a grown-ups and this is not about guilt trips.
Depending on the life stage, it can be extremely difficult to find the time, or not quite so difficult to find physical time but tougher to find motivation. Over the next few days we’ll talk about some key concepts of life balance, but in the meantime, let’s talk about some nitty gritty ways I have found that work for me:
- Get up earlier. This has been what has been most effective for me. If I don’t do my workouts in the morning, it just Does. Not. Happen. Instead, life crud happens. My bad attitude happens. Stuff happens. Everything else happens except my workout. I know there is that terrible moment when the alarm goes off and you are cozy in your bed. But those 10 seconds only last 10 seconds! Do not think. Just do. Get up and shut off the alarm with as little thinking as possible. Once I’m up and moving, I am okay. It’s that 10 seconds of getting up that are the hardest.
- Go to bed earlier. Getting up earlier requires going to bed earlier. If you are a night owls, there are two possible reasons. One is trying to fit in getting more done once the house is quiet and the kids are in bed. The other is enjoying the peace and quiet of the night-time hours. These are not bad things as long as you are getting the rest your body requires. Determine bedtime and be a watchdog about it. Set a phone alarm if necessary.
- Find a creative way to fit in fitness during the day. Walk during lunch hour? Swing by the gym on your way home from work? Meet a friend for a walk or run a couple times a week?
The second roadblock is having time in your day but mentally dragging your feet because you just absolutely hate exercise or the time investment that healthy eating requires. Sister, you are singing my song!
For the longest time I hated exercise with a passion. Over the years I have grown to enjoy it more, but until then, I put my head down and just did it.
I’m speaking as your friend. Friends tell each other the truth. Some things in life you have to do whether you want to or not. This is one. Quit waiting for the day you’re going to magically wake up and love it.
Try new things and hopefully you will land on one you enjoy, but in the meantime, you just gotta. Until then, keep on keeping on in some form or fashion. Do not assume that everyone out there doing it, is loving every minute of it. Trust me, we aren’t.
Day 2: Week 4 Memory Verse (Monday)
Click on the picture for a PDF printable download.
**Bonus Material!** (Monday)
Today we are including important information about Strength Training.
You are making lots of changes during our 7 weeks of Faithful Finish Lines. For some of you, now is not the time to add more to your routine, and that’s okay. Tuck this away for later.
If now is the time, consider incorporating these moves one to two days per week. The benefits of strength training are incredible. If you have any questions about strength training, Corinne is available at [email protected] or in our Facebook group. We are here to lead you to success!
Click here for a downloadable beginner strength training plan. These can be done in your home (no gym membership required) several times per week in about 15 minutes:
Day 3: Are you F.I.N.E.? (Wednesday)
Use F.I.N.E. to Discover Your Abundant Life!
You might use the word “fine” when we don’t really mean it. You may tell your boss, “Fine, I’ll take on this project,” when inside you are rolling your eyes and wondering how on earth you will get it done by the deadline.
How can you actually be fine?
Use this approach to remember how to live the fully abundant life God created for you. The F.I.N.E concept incorporates: Faith, I (as in “Me”), Needs, and Existence to Expectation.
F is for Faith
At the core of an abundant life is faith in Jesus. Having God at the center of your life is key because you are not aiming for a moving target! God is constant. Remember, the letters of the circle must be kept in the proper order. If you aim for any other goal, (mix up the letters in the F.I.N.E. analogy) you will miss the mark. You must put God first in all you do.
I as in “Me”
It’s time to get selfish! Next, focus on self-care. After putting God in the center, you must care for yourself in order to be whole and healthy. How can you eat well and get enough sleep? Are you getting some exercise? Even though I have a large family and children with significant challenges, I have found ways to carve out large amounts of personal time for exercise, therapy, and time with friends and my husband. Instead of taking away from my family, this has made me a better wife and mom.
N is for Needs
People, especially women, often ignore their own needs in order to care for other people. You need to ask yourself these questions: What are my physical needs? What are my emotional needs? How can I get these needs met? And then perhaps most important – Whose needs am I taking care of instead of my own? I used to meet other people’s needs instead of facing my own, because I thought it would be too painful. It’s also important to note that only after you have cared for yourself (“I”), are you then able to care for other people’s needs.
E – from Existence to Expectation!
You were not meant to live a life of mere existence, just going through the motions. You were meant to live a life of joyful expectation, trusting God has great promises of good waiting as you live the life He has created for you. You will live a life of optimism and joy despite daily challenges and frustrations. An abundant life is not an easy life – far from it. An abundant life is a life of trust.
Balancing all of life’s challenges and demands is a complex problem that can never be met with one simple strategy or solution. I’m not sure it’s meant to be, and I give myself and all of us way more credit than that.
I do, however, find this F.I.N.E. strategy helpful sometimes when I’m feeling overwhelmed or when I’m trying to make decisions about priorities.
Look at the target. Are you putting God in the center of what you are doing? Then, are you taking care of yourself?
Then and only then can you move forward with trying to take care of other people in your life.
For the longest time I had this backwards. I took care of other people and if there was any time left over (and WHEN is there any time left over?!) I would do something for myself. It was as if I was waiting for someone (my husband? A friend? My mom?) to stop the world and tell me to take a break. It wasn’t until I started getting this concept that I realized I was the one who had to give myself what I needed in order to fully serve God and be a healthy, well person.
Day 4: A Balanced Wheel (Friday)
On Wednesday, you looked at the F.I.N.E. concept for wellness. Today you will take that one step further. Once you have explored your target (and you continue to be a work in progress…don’t worry that it’s not perfect), then you are able to look outward at the world and your place of service.
You have a calling from God. You feel that tug and desire to do something more – something greater. You want your life to matter and to have an impact.
But how? How does God want you to serve and what does that look like?
There are 4 primary areas of your calling: Church, Family, Work, and Community.
Every person, no matter if you are single or married, have children or not, retired or in the work force, child or adult, has tasks and callings from God in each of these areas. All of these areas are in community with other people. None of these tasks can be done in isolation. You cannot go into your room alone and serve God. God created you to serve in community.
Think of your callings as a wheel with 4 spokes. The more you are able to keep the spokes even, the more easily the wheel will turn. Keeping the areas even does not require equal time on the clock.
Instead, think of it this way. When you look at the 4 areas, consider tasks, projects, and calls on your hearts in each area. Do you feel you are doing what you want to do and are called to do in each area of your life right now? Are there areas where you need to start making gradual changes? Is one area totally blank while another is toppling over?
Your season of life obviously affects your wheel.
When my children were small and I was a foster parent, I spent a huge amount of time serving in the area of Family. This was also serving in Community, caring for foster children and interacting with social workers, therapists, and the court system. I was still involved in Church, which was great.
However, the Work area was almost totally blank and I didn’t feel good about that imbalance. I often wished I was doing something for my own personal development during that time. Maybe taking a class, having an on-the-side freelance writing job, or some other work would have made my wheel more balanced. It would have created challenges that would have pulled from the Family and Community areas, but that would have ultimately been healthy because it would have given me a more balanced wheel.
Part of your calling is also receiving. If others around you are to live out their callings, you need to receive what they give you. If you are trying to run the show or do it all, you are not letting them live out their callings from God.
What does your wheel look like? How could you create more balance?
Copyright © 2016 Sara Borgstede, Motivational Speaker and Author, All rights reserved.
Content as part of your exclusive Faithful Finish Lines membership.