William James said, “The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook.”
People often waste valuable time either doing nothing at all or trying to do everything. To avoid this malady, it is important to know exactly what you are supposed to do in life. This begins by finding your purpose and setting goals to reach your destiny. Identifying your purpose simplifies your life. Your purpose determines what you do, what you focus on, and who you allow into your life. Your purpose also determines what you don’t do, what you do not focus on, and who you don’t allow into your life.
Without a clear purpose, you risk doing nothing at all because you fear what could go wrong and sometimes you fear what could go right. Without a clear purpose, you also risk trying to do everything, trying to please everybody, and going real fast but getting nowhere. If you do not identify your purpose, you really have no foundation upon which to build your life, upon which to base your thoughts and actions, how to use your time, or how to allocate the gifts you have been given.
Knowing your true purpose will help you to make the right choices even when you are under pressure. It will ensure that your mood at the moment does not determine how you respond to situations. It will give you wisdom to deal with conflict. It will keep you from getting entangled in foolishness and meaningless pursuits. And it will lessen stress, frustration, weariness, and anxiety.
The truth is, you only have enough energy and time to do exactly what God made you to do. The time you spend trying to live up to other people’s demands and expectations is time that could be used fulfilling your purpose. Ask yourself if you are trying to do everything? If you find that you need more hours in your day than everyone else in the world, then you can be sure you are doing way more than God intended for you to do.
Lin Yutang said, “Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.” Eliminating the non-essentials means simplifying your life. When you simplify your life, you make room to truly live your life the way God intended for you to live it.
Life itself is really simple. After all, why would God give us a complex life? We often insist on making life complicated? Wise people understand that a busy life does not always mean a productive life. It more likely means a life that is racked with confusion and clutter, spinning in a circle fast, but getting nowhere. Living on purpose with simplicity leads to joy, peace, and success without the headaches and the worry.