Along the lines of my interest in working to my strengths, I recently read Dan Miller’s book 48 Days to the Work You Love. This book, which is endorsed and prefaced by Dave Ramsey, is a Christian take on working in your areas of strength, finding ways to work out your callings, and maintaining balance in your life. The distinctive of the book, apart from it’s Christian framework, is the emphasis on getting something done every day toward your goals, hence the “48 days…” part of the title.
A lot of the information in this book is similar to what I have found in other books, but one emphasis that I found extremely and uniquely helpful was Miller’s assertion that in order to be really effective and satisfied in your life you need to find your own equilibrium and balance between different aspects of your life. He identifies seven pieces to a “life well lived” and walks the reader through how to consider each one and identify goals and desires you have in each area. The seven areas Miller sets out are: spiritual, family, social, personal development, physical, financial, and career. Miller says that while your balance of these facets will be unique to you and may change in different seasons of life, they work in harmony together. So when you’re failing in one area, it tends to pull you down in other areas, and conversely when you’re succeeding in one area you ought to use that momentum to reach your goals in other areas. I found this exercise really helpful because I do not naturally tend toward balance.
Some people have wondered why I’m reading all of these job-related books lately, and that’s a valid question! I currently have four paying part-time jobs (five if you count blogging, but I blog more for the personal outlet and less for the meager income!) and four unpaid volunteer jobs. That’s on top of caring for my children full time 14 hours per day, cleaning the house, homeschooling, cooking, laundering, and all the other myriad things I do. I’m feeling a little frazzled, and so I’m trying to be deliberate in determining what my strengths are so I can find a way to consolidate and maximize my money-earning and non-money-earning work in hopes of achieving a little more balance and sanity. To that end, I’m applying for different positions and taking risks and looking inside and outside of all the usual boxes plus looking around where there don’t seem to be boxes at all. I’m talking to a lot of people (including my husband, don’t worry!) and learning a lot and would appreciate your prayers for clarity and direction.
Whether you are job hunting or just looking for ways to strike a better balance in your life, I’d recommend 48 Days to the Work You Love.
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