Quitting Impression Management

 Today is day 2 of the #PrepareOurHeartsForAdvent Holy Yoga devotional.  See me #crescentlunge forward on my plight on this beautiful #HolyYoga journey.

It is also day 1 of my Bible reading plan on “Addicted To Busy: Recovery For The Rushed Soul” and the title is “Impression Management”.  How apt.

“For everything in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the of pride of life – comes not from the Father but from the world.” ~1 John 2: 16 (NIV)

For my friends who know me well, I have declared November as my ‘Social Sabbatical’.  Some of my friends raise their eyebrows in disbelief, some with concern (as if I’ve gone crazy!), some perplexed, some in mockery and a rare few who have supported and encouraged me with no judgement.  It’s a funny exercise as I understand more about myself and of those truly understand me.  It’s not a judgement of my friends but an assessment of a phenomenon.  Either ways I am thankful to all my friends, laughing or empathising.

So, why this ‘Social Sabbatical’?

  1. Firstly, God knows I need rest and honour this temple [body] that God blesses me with. I talk about this a lot in my HoYo classes but frankly, I don’t practise it enough.
  2. Secondly, as any mum would know, life as a mother of two just gets more demanding with real responsibilities that is beyond just pleasing myself.
  3. Thirdly, the closer I have become to the Word, the more I have realised that I need to invest into living it out.  And that includes carving time out for it.  To read the Bible and spend time with the Lord.  Simple as that.
  4. I wanted to experiment what it would be like to be able to have time to and for myself and if anything disastrous was going to happen if I didn’t fill up my calendar from 8am -8pm.
  5. Lastly, I wanted to ‘prepare my heart for Christmas’; to create mindspace to soak in, muse over and digest the importance of the birthday of our Saviour.

I am now almost two thirds into my Social Sabbatical.  What have I learnt?

  1.  Not all friends appreciate it, nor understand it.  That’s ok..I had to push past people’s judgement and learnt to accept that I am here to please God, not man.
  2. For someone so extroverted as I am, it’s almost impossible to have a true “Social Sabbatical”.  Realistically, just keeping my weekdays free is a good start!  Don’t be too ambitious.
  3. I am a self-diagnosed sufferer of “Impression Management.”  I’ve realised that I have a tendency and habit of making myself busy for the sake of making life appear productive, both to myself and to the world.  If I have to be true to myself, it is Impression Management.  Surely, if my schedule is packed from 8am – 8pm, I’m going to start to sound like Sheryl Sandberg, right?  ….Right?? ..  How I measure my self worth hasn’t really been rooted in Christ.  I have been conforming with the worldly views of modern feminism. It is a confronting issue for me but I am facing it, even as I type now.  I don’t know how I can resolve this issue immediately but I know that this Sabbatical is a good start.
  4. Indeed, no one dies and nothing disastrous happens when I don’t fill up my calendar with a ‘To-do’ in every single minute. In fact, the more I surrender and let God guide my daily tasks, the more effective I become with prioritisation of key tasks.
  5. The Word stays True to itself.  Indeed, the more I invest into it, the more peace and joy I get.  Nothing has been more rewarding than taking the time to meditate, slow down, and focus on Jesus.  When you invest time in a relationship, the relationship flourishes.  It’s funny how God has made us this way and we totally get it when it comes to human relationships yet it’s a hard concept to understand when it comes to a relationship with our King.  Funny, huh?

So far, I can say that the re-investment of finding time to ‘breathe’ and ‘being still’ have been the most rewarding.  I hear God.  I feel the Holy Spirit. I enjoy my prayer time.

“Rather, it should be that of the inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” ~1 Peter 3:4 (NIV)

Today, I will start letting go of my addiction to ‘Impression Management‘.  I need to stop being a slave to ‘busyness’.  It’s ok if I’m a ‘free’ person.  Indeed, I am free in Christ.  Now THIS is truly preparing my heart for advent.

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s