A bit of a stumble…..

Did you think I abandoned the experiment? Nope, actually last Tuesday morning I took a wee little tumble down the last 4 or 5 of my stairs and broke two vertebrae in my back.

It has been a rough week and a half since then. I feel hugely blessed and grateful that I am not in the hospital in traction or paralyzed. The emergency room doctor said it was a very rare break he has seen only one or two other times (leave it to me to be unique). I am at home sort of on bed rest. I am able to walk but have to keep it pretty simple or the pain is quite intolerable. My sweet husband has had to take over everything, all child care, all well everything….I can walk from the bed to the sofa and back and that is about it. Today is the first day I have been up to typing.

The downtime is hard for me and I am trying to figure out why. I mean I get that I am a naturally stay busy kind of person and would like to believe that I really am driven to be more than I am. But I believe God is in control of everything and if I believe that then I have to believe this down time is for a reason and something is supposed to come out of it. Perhaps as I basically have zero control right now it is a lesson in the fact that I can live and be fulfilled without having everything under my thumb. Maybe it is a time to reflect on what I truly, truly want in my life. Perhaps it is a time that I can be quiet enough to complete some things that require time I never seem to give them....perhaps God was so enjoying our time together from The Tired Factor Blog Experiment He thought we should get some more uninterrupted time? Ha ha ha, no I do not believe He caused this, but I do believe He will help me find the good things within it if I let Him. And while all of the above may be true what most resonates within me is that maybe, just maybe I have been defining myself by what all I do rather than Whose I am. And if I believe God has laid on my heart to share with women Whose they are then I better be darn toot'in sure where my true identity rests.


Week Two: Raising the bar

The Tired Factor Blog Experiment…

Short version: Last week was hard and the payoff so much more than I could have expected--final math says hard was worth it. This time last week, Sunday night, I could not wait to climb into bed and 9 pm felt like 3 in the morning to me. The feeling of being tired all the time was like a box I could not climb out of. The ideas and dreams inside of me seemed to dangle off the edge of my constant tiredness and I honestly wondered if my physical feelings could ever somehow mesh with my internal ambition and eagerness to do and be more OR if I would be like some kind of bizarre scary movie where the main character is full of dreams but held captive by her mind that tells her she is too tired to move. And hey, if you think that sounds way out there or a tad melodramatic then you are not battling "tired", those of you who are can no doubt relate.

So here I am, Sunday night, 9:10 pm and I am not tired. I am excited. Eager. Fired up. Certain. Tomorrow I am upping the ante. Last week, week one, I got up at 5:30.This week I will get up at 5:15. The time I have been spending with God each morning has changed me, brought me back to me and freed me. I want more. More time with Him. The way He has moved in my life, my heart and my mind this week has been astounding so all I can do is eagerly anticipate what He will do this week! I have never felt more confident and frankly more in love with myself and my life than I have after intentionally making this time to spend with Him. I am certain the two go hand in hand. This week I am ready to be bolder and step out in bigger faith. It is going to be a great week!!!!!!

I will check in with you tomorrow.

DAY 3 & 4

You people are rabid for change! I have gotten emails and Facebook messages with ya'll wanting to know how day 3 and 4 have gone in The Tired Factor Blog Experiment so here is the update.

Day 3 (Wednesday): Getting up was rough!!!!!! I got my phone out of the bathroom and hit snooze until 5:40 then rolled out of bed, slowly, oooooh sooo slowly. My quiet time was good but I really got a sense of having cheated myself when Bella woke up full throttle at 5:55. I missed Him in a new way. I went to bed determined to be more committed and demand more of myself on Day 4.

Day 4 (today): Ok, I did not WANT to get up but I did and felt like this morning I finally hit my stride. I sat on the bottom step of our staircase and prayed—it was deep and powerful and I felt whole. My entire day resonated from that time spent in His presence praying for His will, reminding Him of His promises, trusting Him to prove Himself and asking Him to mold me into who He created me to be. I had a great day…and maybe I still would have had a great day if I had slept till 6:00 or 6:30 but the peace, the excitement, the boldness I am feeling welling up inside of me I know is from the intentionality of making that time His. My pastor says it like this, "when you make what is important to God important to you He makes what is important to you important to Him". 'Nuff said.

Here is some inspiring feedback I have received in the last few days….keep it coming you wild women, thank you so much for sharing!!!!!!!

You've inspired me to quit with the TV and excuses. I went for a run this morning and it was wonderful. It still kicked my butt and I thought someone should call an ambulance, but it was great! I pulled out my Body For Life book and I'm moving forward!! Thanks so much and keep blogging!!! --Kel

The Holy Spirit is moving and shaking me too! Glad you felt led, because it was major affirmation to me, and I've been up at 5 a.m. the last two days. I'm so reminded that God doesn't want his people to be bound by their emotions and to be half focused, half productive people. We are to run the race with determination, focus, drive and accountability. Keep it comin'! –Tonja

I've been on the computer for an hour too long tonight, but I did want to take minute to thank you for your new experiment. I too have really been struggling with the tired factor. I was so consistent with Jack for the first 2 years of his life and not allowing him to watch TV (for a number of reasons, I won't go into right now) but since I have been pregnant, that has all gone out the window. In the first trimester it was once or twice sometimes even 3xs a week. Up to now, it is a daily ritual. Jack wakes up passionately crying for Diego and I go back to bed for 22 minute intervals until I have to start the new episode. CRAZY!!! I have gone from hard core against TV to now a daily ritual. Well finally yesterday morning, after I read your blog, that changed. I had to not only wake up with him, but I had to become his clown to get his little mind off the torment of losing his morning cartoon. On to my next goal.....follow though on working for at least 10 hours a week at my new job. Thanks for the motivation!!! I need it. --Kara


This morning was much, much harder. The voice of opposition was very loud, the bed was very warm and Bella had awoken me somewhere in the middle of the night. I actually stirred around 5, got my phone and went back to sleep. Oddly enough I woke up on my own spot on at 5:30 (I am sure God sent an angel to nudge me), talked myself into 6 more minutes of shut eye and got up (elevated my thinking) at 5:36. I had my quiet time (tears of joy and gratitude producing quiet time at that) then feel asleep on the couch until Bella woke up. No judgment, these are baby steps people.

I gotta tell ya there is power in His certainty. I mean hey, if I can tackle this change then I can do anything right? I mean it is all the same process of choice. Suddenly my dreams seem a tad bit closer and less like looming unattainables and more like possibilities. And something about making the act of sacrifice and obedience to start my day with Him is creating a stir….something is happening, good happening, yummy exciting happening….

The only way to stretch your future is to stretch your present

loosely paraphrased from Zig Ziglar


The Tired Factor Blog Experiment DAY ONE:

For today I was determined to get up by 5:30 am to have quiet time with God so last night I wanted to be in bed lights out by 10 pm. I managed lights out before 11, what can I say, husbands happen. Oddly enough I had a hard time falling asleep. I was nervous, anxious, on edge, whatever ya wanna call it about having to get up early. Now mind you I am usually up by or before 6:00 am per the little voice on the bedside monitor blinking bright green to the beat of "mamma, mamma" so 5:30 was not that much of a stretch but it seemed so daunting—seriously---like I might die or something if I got up at 5:30. It was hard to even think about and I was worried that if I managed to pull it off that I would be zombie like the rest of the day.

Per my wise friend's advice I put my alarm clock a.k.a. Blackberry on the bathroom counter so when it went off I was forced to get out of bed to shut it off rather than just lay in bed, eyes half closed, slowly (who are we kidd'in) quickly seduced back to sleep by warm covers. I actually woke up a few minutes before 5:30 and pushed myself out of bed—I kid you not, full out mental conversation about having to get up and a large part of why I actually did get up was because I knew I was going to have to type about it tonight to you. I would love to tell you that it is all about my champion spirit, my warrior heart, my do or die mentality but no, all because I have chosen to be accountable and transparent to you dear reader and I could not bear to admit failure on Day One.

I settled in the living room to have my quiet time but my brain was so jumbly, like I could not string two coherent thoughts together. I knew the enemy was trying to jack up my game so all I could think to do was pray for other people and try to think of a scripture that says I am not as crazy as I was feeling at 5:40 in the morning. I kept thinking of the verse that says we have the mind of Christ…I could never remember where it is in the bible so if you know email it to me or post it as a comment PLEASE!

Bella started waking up just a bit before 6 am so I did not get in that much quiet time but the point was that I chose victory today. I was radical. I got up. I did something different. I broke my mold. I charted a new course. The day itself was average. Nothing amazing happened. No big fat check in the mail box, no eager message from a publisher, no life altering creative thought. BUT I forged a new path. I told what was holding me back that it no longer had any power over me. And guess what? I did not die from getting up at 5:30. My day was not even riddled with yawns. I was, I am, vibrant. Interestingly enough as I sit here to type that ugly little voice that told me I was too tired to get up is now trying to convince me that since all I did was get up a wee bit early and pray a little that it does not really count because it is not like I worked out or wrote or met any of my other goals. Whatever! That is such a load of fooey! But see that is how this madness called warfare works….tiny little red man takes a grain of truth (I did not work out) mixes it with any remnants of lingering self doubt (my thighs really do need some attention and geez, what if I can't ever squeeze out enough morning time for God and working out??? Oh the panic!) and voila you think you are a loser and the day's victory through Christ gets lost in the muck of our own tiny selfish minds. Well, NO MORE I TELL YOU! And guess what? When I rolled myself out of bed this morning I pummeled that whiny voice so while it is trying to yap in my ear right now in hopes that I will give up my quest I KNOW today's action has cemented my getting up tomorrow, and the next day and the next! You know what we call that?? Faith! Certainty! Bravado! Greatness! Progress! Firm thighs, books written, goals accomplished, and a legacy left!!!!

Day One is a success as measured by meeting my goal of getting up by 5:30 and starting my day with God. Some might say that is a baby step but for me it was climbing a mountain because my body said I was tired and my mind said I could start tomorrow to which my heart said that I AM full of greatness and at 5:26 in the morning with blurry eyes and a fuzzy robe I finally listened.

Tomorrow Day Two.

Therefore, prepare your minds for action;

be self controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be

given you when Jesus Christ is revealed.

1 Peter 1:13

The Tired Factor Blog Experiment

That's it. I'm done. Done with my big talking and my little doing. Done with grand plans and puny actions. I am so over my plotting, planning and imaging followed up by my sleeping in, sneaking snacks and settling for yesterday's dose of ambition. I am tired of starting the week with a goal and ending it with Tivo. Done. Finnito. Over it.

I have big dreams. I have always had big dreams. I can remember being 6 years old and having a vivid image of what I wanted in my life. Oddly enough no amount of living has changed that vision much. I believe that God created me. That before He formed me He knew every dream He would place in my heart and that He equipped me with every skill, passion and desire to move me towards those very dreams. Now here is what I find perplexing; if I believe that then what's up with all the Tivo time?

I find myself saying the same thing over and over, "I'm tired". And I am tired. Bone tired. There is nothing wrong with me, no medical reason for being so tired. Sure I am a mom so tired is just a part of the package. I set the alarm clock to get up to spend time with God each morning and I hit snooze because I am so tired I can't get out of bed. I plan to write after Bella goes to bed and I am too tired to type. I plan workouts that don't happen 'cause I am tired. Time with friends, tired. Time with hubbie, tired. Reach for goals, tired. Seek my destiny, tired. Change the world, tired.

So this is it, tired is where I've sold out. For me tired is the tiny bit of truth the enemy takes and makes it seem bigger and more real than the truth of what God says about me. So if tired is where I give up then tired is where I have to fight. And I know that I know that I know that I already have the victory. Since "tired" is a subjective state I can only use my productivity as the objective criteria to chart my progress.

Effective tomorrow I am living experiment in biblical success. My "tired" is gonna get it's butt kicked. No more settling for less than what I am destined for because a little mouse with a megaphone and an alleged forked tail whispers into my mind that I am tired and I absorb that belief into my body. God says that I will run and not grow weary. That in my weakness He is made strong. I am restored in Him and by Him. Through Him I can do all things. All things. That includes getting off my duff to chase, catch and blow the doors off my dreams.

I am committed to being held accountable by you my dear readers. I am open to your ideas, encouragement and feedback. I am embarking on a public journey to kick mediocrity's tail and prove that the word of God works. Everytime, all the time, in every situation, even against something as random and rampant as being tired. Right now being tired is what I am letting keep me from God's will for me. I don't know what your "tired" is but I know we have to fight it the same way so I will chart my progress honestly, the good, the bad, the ugly. I will be a petri dish for the power of His word. Together we will journey to the summit of excellence and kick the excuses to the curb! So long Tivo hello fabulous!

Be looking for tomorrow's update....