Sneaking down the creaky stairs of my old farmhouse, I popped my earbuds in for a few quiet minutes of the Family Life Today podcast before my kids were roused. I wasn’t expecting what I heard but it was exactly what my marriage needed… maybe yours does too? (I’ll share it below!)
My husband and I are actually doing something new in 2023. We’re making a vision board for our year. Have you ever tried it? (Not in theory – but in actuality?) We’re forcing ourselves to sit down and ask what actually matters this year. At this time next year, who do we want to be and what do we need to do to get there?
This sounds easier than it is.
What would top your list? What actually matters to you?
What matters enough to track it?
Do you ever feel like life is just happening to you? Or around you? I do.
What if we flipped that story and took responsibility for the time we have?
What if we budgeted our time and told it where to go based on what was most important to us?
What, in fact, IS most important?
We better figure it out because last time I checked, we can’t add hours to our year.
In fact, there are only 8,760 hours in this trip around the sun.
Statistically, you’ll spend over 2,000 of those precious hours at work and a crazy 900 of them on social media.
If you’re like me, your eyes cross a little and your brain goes numb when you read the 8,760 hour figure. How can we possibly account for that many hours?
Maybe we should start smaller. If we statistically spend about 900 hours a year on social media, maybe we should just simply ask: What is more important than social media? I’d hope we’d all put our church, marriages, kids, and family ahead of social media on our list of “what matters.” But then again, maybe we wouldn’t. The question is – if we know we’re spending 900 hours scrolling, let’s at LEAST spend that much time with the things that are most important.
For me, I want to prioritize my marriage on this trip around the sun. Maybe you do too? If you don’t feel like prioritizing your marriage – it’s probably the first thing you should prioritize. If I know anything, I know that good marriages don’t just happen. They take work and intentionality.
If I say I want to work on my marriage, I better prioritize it, right?
Here’s where my jaw hit the floor:
Get this: If I spend as much time on my marriage as the average American spends consuming social media in one year, I’ll spend 17 hours a week on my marriage. Seventeen hours!! That’s 2.4 hours a day that gets mindlessly scrolled away!
“Ok, lady… stop attacking social media.” That’s not my point at all!
I’m just challenging myself to prioritize the things that actually matter over the things that I mindlessly do.
They say that “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it.” Or, put more positively – what you track, grows. What is actually important enough in your life that you want it to grow?
Back to my creaky trip down the stairs. During that podcast, Family Life Today announced a brilliant “500 hour” marriage challenge they have created for 2023. By visiting familylife.com/500-hours-together you can download a free 26-page guide complete with challenge instructions, date ideas, a time tracker, conversation starters, tips for how to connect better with your spouse, and even ideas for how to connect with your kids!
If you want to have a better marriage in 2023, why not try this challenge!?
If you want to have a better relationship with your kids, adapt it to your family!!
Whatever the case – let’s take time to actually write down what matters. Maybe this is the year you finally get involved in a church. Maybe this is the year you focus on your marriage – or maybe your kids. What is it for you?
If we don’t figure out what matters – we won’t be able to track it… and if we don’t track what matters, it won’t grow.
Let’s do 2023 differently. Let’s grow what matters by tracking it. I’ve got my tracker on the fridge!
Let me know if you get yours at familylife.com/500-hours-together!
Meet your farmer – Liz Gerdes. She and her husband run a farm-to-table raw milk dairy. They empower moms to confidently feed their families nutrient-dense food using farm fresh milk! Visit gerdesfreshfarm.com or follow her on Facebook @gerdesfreshfarm or Instagram @gerdesliz for more info.