Big events can be some of the most life changing events in the life of a child, but also in the life of their leader. While I firmly believe in delivering 52 great weekend services a year, I also recognize that there is something special that happens at camps, conventions, and summer outreaches (vbs, crusade, etc.). These events not only impact the children present, they can have a profound impact on the leader. Unfortunately, that impact is not always positive.
During the course of planning, prepping, and participating in a large-scale event, many of life’s priorities are forced to step aside. I’ll admit that while I am fully committed as a husband and father, during our recent outreach I was not as fully present as I normally am. I don’t believe it is wrong to shift priorities around occasionally, but only for a short time and with a clear end date of the shift.
Once the event is over, the temptation is to continue to allow your priorities to stay out of whack. Sometimes it is caused by the next big event that is now just around the corner. Other times, it is just caused when we fail to be intentional about how we spend our time, we shift towards unhealthy habits.
Here’s what I try to do, though it doesn’t always work perfectly. I definitely suggest you find what works for you. First, I almost always do as little church work as possible the week after a big event. I refocus on myself and my family first. This allows me to remind them that while they have had to share me a lot lately, they are still very important to me and still my greatest priority (after my personal relationship with God). This rest week also allows me to slow my body and mind down a little and get some much-needed relaxation.
Once I get back into things, I work through rearranging my schedule by priority. For example, after our recent kids’ adventure I wanted to get right back into blogging, but I had many other things that were higher priority. I had work at both my day job and at the church that had fallen behind and needed my attention. I also restarted my physical exercise which had stopped for the few weeks before and during the event.
Now that I am caught up on some of the major priorities and I have put them back into their rightful position in my hierarchy, I am getting back into some of the details of my life. A while back I started designing my ideal week each week and I sent it to my wife for review. I stopped doing that because of the craziness of life during our event, but I’m getting back into it now. I am also revisiting my life plan this week and will be tweaking it as needed. These are both strategies that I learned from Michael Hyatt that have radically transformed how I intentionally keep control of my time and my life.
If you find yourself struggling to get back control of your life after a major event, I suggest you try something like what I do. One of the most important things to do during and after the event is communicate with your spouse or a close friend and use them to help you keep from getting too far out of line. If you are one of those people who is constantly going from one thing to the next with no time to slow down, you need to stop doing something. Either delegate it to someone else or just stop doing it altogether. There is nothing wrong with stopping some good things for the sake of something better and if you are constantly stuck in the fray of planning major events, you are probably missing opportunities to dream up or start something better.
How do you readjust to life after a big event? Let me know in the comment section. Your suggestions may help someone who is struggling with this very thing.