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Monday, September 14, 2009

Reining Disappointments

Rein: to curb; restrain; control.
Reign: to have control, rule, or influence of any kind.

My life is a constant juggling act. As a wife, mother of four young children, real estate broker, business builder, Bible study leader, aspiring writer and speaker, I am Barnum's funniest clown; I have way to many plates in the air to be successful in this circus of life.

Once the additional plates of laundry, grocery shopping, cooking, cleaning, carpool and homework are thrown into the mix, I quickly begin to resemble a Cirque du Soleil trainee trying to keep them all spinning.

Let's face it, with so much at stake, there are many days I chip a plate or two or worse. Times where they all come crashing to the ground in a million broken pieces leaving casualties along the way.

Some grace-filled days, miraculously, the plates spin, the juggling continues and all is well.

A phrase that keeps coming up in my current business coaching is, "Learn to discipline your disappointments."

In my head I think of reining them in like wild horses breaking toward the barn. That's how emotional I really am. Disappointments come at me as my plates crash to the ground and before I can pick them up and start my juggling routine again, I must stare at the mess, shed a few tears and deliberate on the best method of cleaning...all before I actually pick them up and start again. Like wild horses toward the barn, my emotions run hot and heavy propelling me in one direction. And that direction is not forward.

Because the disappointments do come and they will come. They descent quickly upon me to remind me that juggling is not what I'm best at. It's simply what I must do. Whether it's a forgotten appointment, dissatisfied client or hurt friend, plates fall. Plates break. Juggling ceases.

I'm trying to make the times of ceasing much, much less than the time spent practicing the juggle. Practicing juggling will make me better. This week I'm learning from the casualties, quickly cleaning up the mess and juggling as hard and fast as I can. I'm getting better.

I see little victories already. Humbling myself, examining casualties and moving forward. Learning to clean the shards of responsibility without slashing myself on shattered expectations.

What I've discovered this week is that by reining my disappointments, I am actually reigning my disappointments. And, that makes juggling worth it!

"One thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal..." Philippians 3:13-14


B His Girl said...

You gave us a lot to think about today Lisa. We all hear crashing around us at times. I want to smile when all the plates are spinning, knowing it is a moment to enjoy!

Still Learning said...

Lisa, what a great point. We are just so happy when it's all coming together and flowing beautifully. What happens when things fall to the ground? Thank you for making me think about that. I guess we just need to know in advance that sometimes things just don't happen the way we want them to and it's horrible when it affects someone else. Oh my. You have so many responsibilities, God bless you!

Thank you for making me think about that today. I take on a new teaching role of teaching this week. I am scared that I will mess up but you know what? Sometimes I will. I just need to know that ahead of time and be equipped to be able to deal with the disappointments and not let them keep me from moving forward. Wow, thank you!


p.s. I am so happy to hear Andrew is doing well. I know we have all been praying hard for him and his family.

Kelly Combs said...

I really like this post. I have often described my life as juggling plates, so this hit home for me. Thanks for posting it! I need to rein in my disappointments as well.

Laura said...


I love hearing how other women are (oops, I dropped a ball) struggling with the "B" word. Balance is so hard in my life! I've been working very hard on staying present in each moment lately. I don't want to miss these precious moments because I'm moving on to the next thing in my mind.

But...balance in the Christian life has a different meaning, doesn't it?

love ya!