Daily Priorities

I will sometimes speak at conferences and meetings with my husband, Phil Cooke (philcooke.com).  Many of you many know him as a media and entertainment producer or by his recent books ,” Jolt” – Get A Jump On World That’s Constantly Changing, “ One Big Thing – Discovering What You Were Born To Do, and “Unique” – Telling Your Story in the Age of Brands and Social Media.  I am often asked at these events “how do I keep up with him!”   My answer…. “I keep my tennis shoes on and my suitcase packed!”

Seriously, we lead a pretty diverse and busy life – I was in 6 countries last year alone. I am sure you have lots “on your plate” as well if you’re living and breathing in this fast paced world.  Keeping up with twitter, instagram, facebook, linkedin, and all the other social media sites can fill your day alone.

So what priorities should we be paying attention to?   Here’s my top 3.

I direct Christian Women In Media in Hollywood on the CBS Studio lot in LA. In February our guests were DeAnna Gravillis and Christine Caine, two leading women doing some significant and challenging work in their fields. DeAnna and her husband Kenny are co-founders of Gravillis Inc. (gravillisinc.com) a leading design company focused on “key art” for top clients like Sony, Universal, 20th Century Fox, HBO and others. Her day starts early with 2 kids and 2 dogs, and a demanding office schedule. She said her key to keeping it together was her 45 minutes of quiet time every morning at 5am. I know that Christine Caine does the same and more everyday as she fights the battles in the unseen and seen world of sex trafficking with her ministry the A21 Campaign (A21campaign.com).

I would encourage you to make time. Recent studies show that if you spend 3 days or less reading your Bible weekly you will make no significant choices in your life over someone who never reads the Word at all. You have to spend at least 4 days a week reading the Word to make wise and significant choices for your life. And… it has to be the Bible, not a commentary, or self-help book on Christian life, or even attending a church service. God wants us to get to know Him. He wants us to spend time with Him and there is no other place to do it but in personal quiet time with Him.

This doesn’t have to be lots of time. It could be as little as just 15 minutes a day with an occasional hour here and there. It could be a hair or nail appointment, exercise time (love my hikes), coffee with a friend, or a good soak in the tub. Yes, I know you heard all this before, but are you doing it? Why is it so hard for us to take time for ourselves? Taking time to eat right, exercise, and take care of our bodies should not be negated in our busy lives. Romans 12:1 says we should present our bodies as a living sacrifice holy and pleasing to God. Not a body with blood shot eyes, greasy hair, and smelly sweats. We need to look, and present ourselves to our husbands, families, friends, and business associates in the best “package” we can. Our look, style, and outward appearance are a reflection of them. If we don’t “care” about the way we look, then we are in effect saying we don’t care about them either.
When was the last time you read a book, saw a play, or went to a museum. Sometimes, I think my house is going to be taken over by books! Whenever Phil and I are in a new city, or country, and have an afternoon free, you’ll find us at a museum, or our second favorite tourist spot, the local antique or flea market. We love exploring and you never know what you’ll find in the back of some of these places or what you will learn about some weird item that you find. And… don’t get me started on the stories you hear from the shop owners.

I also find that giving back to a local charity is another way to renew my mind. Seeing how other people live, or helping someone in need renews my perspective on what is really important in life. It’s insightful. I recently learned how to frame a house while volunteering for Habitat for Humanity. I love learning new things but I have to make myself do things that many times I am resisting. Keeping up with technology is one of my top struggles. But, when I do, I find it revives me by stretching and pushing my brain muscle to experience new insights and to grow and mature. It keeps my mind open to our constantly changing world.

Add movies, plays and concerts to the list. Yes, you’ll see some weird stuff occasionally, but I love the conversation that follows. It’s great food for thought and some times… personal action.

Now excuse me, the water in the tub is hot and I just started a new book. Oh I didn’t say you shouldn’t “multitask”!