The Lord is showing me that it’s OK to attempt to avoid stress and anger triggers in my day, instead of expecting myself to be strong enough to handle them. This permission has been a huge relief to this over-achieving mamma. This all came from the clear analogy of a strained foot, and the need to splint it rather than pushing through the pain. My new strategy is to Reduce Stress by Embracing Rest.
Now, as a busy mamma, rest is often an illusive goal, the pursuit of which can become an anger-inducing failure itself. But the Lord has been showing me that many of the triggers that bring me to a boiling point have nothing to do with the pace of life, and much, much more to do with my state of mind.
It is in my mind that I am most often fatigued to the point of fracture, and that is because I too-often jump on a mental treadmill and run my spirit ragged just by my thoughts and mental patterns.
- When I choose to worry over a problem, it wearies my spirit, leaving me ready to splinter when one more stress pops up in my day.
- When I let fear of man sneak into my heart again, it eats away at me until I have no reserve left for a small infraction with my kids.
- When I try to be all the way there for the insatiable appetite of Social Media while trying to be all the way there for my kids, I stretch myself so thin, I snap at that tiniest added pressure.
And so, I have chosen to splint my soul this month by choosing to do less rather than more.
Less social media. Since my fast in May, I’ve been visiting Facebook fewer days in the week, and no longer requiring myself to have the active presence on various platforms that bloggers are taught to maintain. In breaking many blogging rules, I’m finding the writer and mamma I always wanted to be. I’ve weaned myself from the habit of sharing every great photo or witty status, taking those moments of beauty simply as gifts from my Father, without the burden of disseminating them to the world wide web.
Less anxiety. As a preggo mamma, I have to eat a lot. I always have a plan in place for my next meal. The other day, other’s schedules thwarted my plans and I was faced with a choice: stew all day, worrying about what to do for dinner, or experiment with trusting practical details to a Heavenly Father. Guess what? He not only provided a dinner I didn’t have to cook, but sustained my blood sugar until the late hour it was served. Hmm. Maybe God IS big enough that I don’t have to worry about small details?
Less Fear of Man. Although I experienced a huge deliverance from this main trigger in freedom from my Anxiety Disorder 6 years ago (wow! It’s been 6 years!? Praise God for freedom!) I still trip up in this area occasionally, taking on the burden of making sure everyone around me understands my motives and approves of my actions, appearance, and that of my kids. Just typing that out makes me realize how big of a burden that is, and how ridiculous it is for me to try to carry it. I go back to the truth that my worth is not in what I do, but in Whose I am.
Though I may not be able to quit doing laundry, or take a week’s vacation from chasing a 6, 4, and 2 year old, I praise God He has shown me these areas that I can take some weight off mentally, and avoid pushing myself to the point of fracture.
You can find all of my posts about my journey to freedom from anger here.
Are you like me? Are their burdens you don’t absolutely have to be carrying that are wearing you down? How do you plan a more peaceful path on the days you know you need extra room to breath?