The Busy Syndrome.

The Busy Syndrome.

For those of us who are accustomed to overbooked schedules...
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The Busy Syndrome. Or shall we call it the 2017 syndrome? Oh, you know what I'm talking about. It's our favorite excuse to cancel on dinner plans. It's our go-to response to the question of how are you doing. We live in a fast-paced, technology-driven world, leaving us no time to breathe in between work, family, friends, exercise, and events.

At some point, we have added so much to our plates and become so spread thin that we forget to focus on the stuff that really matters. This game of life we are playing should not be treated like the board game. There is no cash prize or brownie points for successfully accomplishing your huge "to do" list for the day if you've left no time to actually LIVE.

I think it's time to wake up. Are you too busy to create some time to relax? Are you too busy to spend quality time with your kids? Too busy to drop your plans to help a friend in need? Or are you so busy that you can't even respond to a text?

Isn't life more than the mere tasks at hand for the day? No one likes feeling like the people they care about are too busy for them. You make time for what's important to you; it's called prioritizing. But what if our generation has their schedules so filled up, that we have forgotten to make time for WHO is important.

I am guilty of the "busy syndrome." I am utterly exhausted from running around from thing to thing trying to give 100% energy to each and I don't see how I can take something out right now.

But here's what everybody is forgetting: The 'busy syndrome' is a CHOICE. We choose to chain ourselves to the obligation after obligation after obligation… Busyness is not an inevitable condition; rather it’s our own decision to live a work consuming life.

Let’s face the facts. Most of what we do during the day doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things. It’s time to go back and live life at a more relaxed pace.

But how is this possible when you’re completely booked hour to hour? I think perhaps the biggest misconception in terms of ‘busyness’ is that it is just a season of life. Oh, summer is around the corner, I’ll be less busy then. THINK AGAIN. Kids are out of school, there are summer internships and jobs, family vacations, bonfires, beach days, music festivals, etc. etc.

I don’t know about you, but I have been in busy season after busy season after busy season… Slowing my life down is not just going to happen overnight. Instead, it’s time for me to be intentional about enjoying my life.

This article is my vow to be intentional about making time for others. I am making the conscious decision to create time for the people I care about and slow down my life pace. I CHOOSE life.


Cover Image Credit: huffingtonpost.com

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17 Empowering Bible Verses For Women

You go, girl.
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We all have those days where we let the negative thoughts that we're "not good enough," "not pretty enough" or "not smart enough" invade our minds. It's easy to lose hope in these situations and to feel like it would be easier to just give up. However, the Bible reminds us that these things that we tell ourselves are not true and it gives us the affirmations that we need. Let these verses give you the power and motivation that you're lacking.

1. Proverbs 31:25

"She is clothed with strength and dignity and she laughs without fear of the future."

2. Psalm 46:5

"God is within her, she will not fall."

3. Luke 1:45

"Blessed is she who believed that the Lord would fulfill His promises to her."

4. Proverbs 31:17

"She is energetic and strong, a hard worker."

5. Psalm 28:7

"The Lord is my strength and my shield."

6. Proverbs 11:16

"A gracious woman gains respect, but ruthless men gain only wealth."

7. Joshua 1:9

"Be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."

8. Proverbs 31:30

"Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the Lord will be greatly praised."

9. 1 Corinthians 15:10

"By the grace of God, I am what I am."

10. Proverbs 31:26

"When she speaks, her words are wise, and she gives instructions with kindness."

11. Psalm 139:14

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

12. 1 Peter 3:3-4

"Don't be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God."

13. Colossians 2:10

"And in Christ you have been brought to fullness."

14. 2 Timothy 1:7

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline."

15. Jeremiah 29:11

"'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. 'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.'"

16. Exodus 14:14

"The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm."

17. Song of Songs 4:7

"You are altogether beautiful, my darling, beautiful in every way."

Next time you're feeling discouraged or weak, come back to these verses and use them to give you the strength and power that you need to conquer your battles.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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Celebrating My Mom: Her Beauty and Strength

Here's to the most inspirational woman in my life.

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In observance of International Women's Day on March 8th, it is of paramount importance that we take a few moments to consciously recognize the women in our lives. We often call the women we adore by casual names like "Mom", "my sister", or "my girlfriend", and, usually, these nouns are intimate enough to replace their names---but not today. Today is for appreciating you, Melanie Daugherty, my mom---not as my mother, but as a human whom I hold with the highest regards.

It is easy for me to recall the innumerable times you've embraced me (even though I considered myself to be a disappointment), forced me to put my qualms into perspective, or insisted I put my aspirations into action (because "can't is too lazy to try") ; but, the magnitude of your accomplishments shouldn't always be measured by its impact on me, however, if it were to be, let it be the times you've inspired me.

Mom, I have always appreciated you, but I truly began to define you as my idol during my sophomore year of high school. During this time, I began experiencing shame in my identity. I was an athletic girl, but suffered from body dysmorphia, as well as a misunderstood and pessimistic perception of my inner thoughts. I became very introspective and was completely fixated on thoughts of worthlessness and lack of purpose. I assumed chronic fatigue was just a characteristic of being a teenager. In me, you recognized a past version of who you once were. I cried to you and you embraced me in your arms. My deteriorating state of mental health was not your burden, and you refused to let me define myself by diagnoses and prescriptions. Recognizing your success and triumph over anorexia and depression motivated me. I was so proud to be your daughter. Knowing that confidence and appreciation for the world was possible to achieve accelerated me into a period of self-reflection and determination. I wanted to trace your template of self-improvement with my footsteps and create a new image of myself---one that would reignite my childhood "spark".

You're not just my hero for saving me, but for giving me someone to admire. You live your life without limitations. Competing in the 140.6 mile Ironman triathlon is an accomplishment in itself, competing in the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii is even more incredible, and completing eight of these triathlons is enough for most people to call you "crazy" rather than by your name. Your greatest demonstration of strength however, was not through athletic prowess, but through mental and emotional perseverance.

Losing your best friend to breast cancer was almost inconceivable because no one ever wants to acknowledge it as a possibility. What people also try to forget, is that it is just as possible for their lives to be taken from them. After learning to cope with your best friend's death, you were diagnosed with stage three breast cancer. Watching you grow progressively weaker was enervating in itself. This wasn't a reality I was able to accept as truth, partially because you were my mom, but also because your strength was an aspect of you that I didn't think could ever be taken from you---and I was right.

Although your complexion grew pallid and your body could no longer sustain itself, your mindset remained the same. You would not accept a last breath, and you ensured that every breath you took reiterated that. You demonstrated to me that positivity is the panacea that combats a discouraged mind.

Mom, for you, I am proud. I am grateful to have lost sometimes, because without loss, I wouldn't have been able to realize my strength, and I wouldn't have realized that if you hadn't been my anchor.

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