The Perils Of The Quickaholic

Recently I was heading in for a 7:00 a.m. breakfast meeting and for whatever reason I actually left the house early. The breakfast place I was headed to is exactly 15 minutes from my house so I knew I had to leave at 6:45 to make it on time, however, I remember sitting down in my truck, looking up at the clock and seeing that it was only 6:39 a.m.

Just a few minutes from my destination I noticed a middle aged man in a maroon Honda Accord who was trying to pull out of the gas station into my lane of heavy morning traffic. I had plenty of time left to get to my appointment, so without hesitation I put my brakes on and let him out.

As he pulled out and waved the thought crossed my mind…

Margin is essential for the unexpected!

I tend to plan my schedule and my budgets based on perfect scenarios. The problem with that is obvious. Rarely are there perfect scenarios. In other words I have no margins.

A margin is something allowed, or reserved, for that which can not be foreseen or known with certainty.

If I had left right “on time”  I probably would have been so focused on where I was going that I would have totally missed the opportunity to let him out. Even if I did see him I’m not sure I would have taken the time to stop. Now it doesn’t sound like a really big deal, right? I mean, I just let a car pull out in front of me. However, this principle plays itself out in almost every area of my life and has huge implications.

I’m afraid margin is something that is missing way too often in my life these days.

My lack of margin impacts…

How generous I am with my money.

How generous I am with my time.

How I lead.

How I love.

Maybe we all need to slow down a bit. Breathe a bit.

I know we’re all quickaholics that have become enamored by words like, fast, easy and instant, but efficiency is not God’s highest goal for you. Love is.

How is your margin or lack of margin impacting you these days? What one area of your life do you need more margin the most?

8 Responses to “The Perils Of The Quickaholic”

  1. diane1230 says:

    So true! I often realize when my kids are in the car they notice things I never would because they’re not as worried about this, that and the other thing. It’s nice to relax and smell the roses sometimes.

  2. Carolyn Thomas says:

    Good one!! channel of Jesus

  3. Sammy A says:

    True story. My first thought when I saw this in my inbox was “I’m too busy to read about being too busy”. Oh boy.

  4. Wayne Stiles says:

    It’s amazing, isn’t it, Pete? When we fail to leave margin in our schedule we fail to leave room for God’s divine appointments. THOSE are the appointments we shouldn’t miss.

    Thanks for a great post, as always.

  5. Lori in Colorado says:

    I am currently trying to get better at mindfulness by only doing one task at a time. Multitasking may be one of the hardest habits I’ve tried to break

  6. For seven years, I taught in the adult degree program at a Nashville university. I always began each term by asking students to identify their time commitments (before adding in school). As adults, they had jobs, kids, meals, commuting, house and yard work, etc. Over seven years, I went though that exercise with hundreds of students. Before adding in the time needed to pursue their degrees, the average adult was committed to 26.3 hours of activity per day.

    There are no merit badges for over-commitment. There are, however, unmet needs, broken relationships, and exhausted people. Yeah, the Bible says, “I can do all things through Christ…” but “all things” doesn’t mean everything. When I learned that, I discovered margin and the life that happens when margin is available.

  7. Melissa says:

    So true. My lack of margin shows in my to-do list, which rolls over from day to day and week to week. That in turn leaves me feeling overwhelmed.

  8. Dea says:

    Loved this post, case in point a friend texted ne and she led with “OK, so what time is good for you…bla bla”
    So I said and tried to infuse gentleness in my response “Hi first of all” – she slowed down, I could almost feel her exhale. Love your blog btw, well written, not too long posts and I like the frequency with which you post. I work in this field and so many people overpost, you don’t get a chance to really digest or think about what they say. Too many bloggers overpost and you have it just right.
    Blessings from Austin Texas :) Dea.

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