Frankly, fellow recovering procrastinators, I am the last person who should address the topic of margin – except from the needy perspective. I even think I have to sleep fast. The Lord is really working on me regarding this topic.
Let’s see if I can illustrate life without margin so I can better communicate the need for rest, pauses and stops in life:
DuetonotdoingwhatneedsdoingwhenitneedsdoingworkplayorrestforyearsIforced myselfintoapositionofjampackeddaysrushingandconstantfatiguewhowantstolive likethatIdontandGoddoesntwantmetoeithercanyouimagineJesusdoingthat
Just as we need spaces, commas, periods in writing, so too, we need those in life. Otherwise our lives are a page printed edge to edge with no white space, no breaks. Exhausting. We need white space.
It’s hard for me to pull out of a marginless lifestyle. But as I slowly progress, I am LOVIN’ IT!
In his books on margin, Dr. Richard Swenson says that margin is the space between our load and our limits. It’s where we are recharged. He points out that we leave space between cars as we drive and time space for a plane change. Yet we leave no space, no reserve in our day to day lives.
Margin provides rest. It makes our journey to our God-given destinations more meaningful and doable.
Margin comes in big chunks like a good night’s sleep or in small pieces such as starting dinner early. It can be allowing myself to sit and read a book while a friend has the kids or starting a report ahead of time and finishing before it’s due.
A few margin manglers and margin makers:
Disregarding the need for rest / Build in rest periods.
Overscheduling / Commit to less.
Backlog of undone tasks / Start early, finish early.
Expecting a path free of obstacles / Leave an extra cushion of time.
Phones, computers, media that intrude and control / Control these with boundaries.
Doing what needs doing when it needs doing creates margin and keeps us from running right over the edge of our daily lives. Margin refreshes us on our way and enables us to keep going.
What mangles your margins? How do you make margin?