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Author: Nicole Schreuder

Life Gauges

    In your daily rush, busyness, and just plain ole operating on autopilot have you found yourself out of gas? How many times like me have you passed someone on the side of the road, hazards on and the AAA guy walking up to the car with that red gas can in hand? Maybe like me passing judgement on them like, really? It is a new car with all the sensors, all the sounds and beeps, all the flashing warning lights tipping you off and you still managed to run out of gas?

    If we are honest, each of us have been that exact person that stranded ourselves on the side of the road. In the rush and the check lists of daily life, do you find yourself staring straight ahead so focused on getting to where you are going that you don’t pause, check-in, or notice the people around you? Our lives will notify us and give warnings just like a car, warning signs will begin to light up, we begin to hear audible alarms, none of these things were there before. Have you ever found yourself in a place where you just pushed through the list, the tasks, the commitments, and had a mindset of “I can make it, it’s not much further!”.

    What gauges on your dashboard of life, are you monitoring? What things have you identified as the most valuable or bring you the most joy? Most of us get so caught up in the going and the doing, putting the check mark next to the task that sometimes we can find ourselves depleted, worn out, or maybe at a standstill because there is simply nothing left. Now action in our lives is important but so is time to pause, we are a driven culture and sometimes it may not serve us well. Are you aware or present enough in your life that you see the lights flash, the needle moving from Full to Empty, the maintenance lights that give warning? It is important to do maintenance on our lives and fill up emotionally, physically, or mentally so that we can keep going.
    To start, identify those areas of your life that you need to keep watch of, monitor the things that you value most and that have the biggest impact on your life. Identifying these things is vital, some of us never stop to even identify what those are. Some examples could be your marriage and the connection you have with your spouse, your career and your growth at work, finances and what spending or saving looks like for you. Your life gauges are going to be unique to you; customize your life dashboard however works for you.

    Next, spend some time reflecting on where you are at with each area you identified. Are you at full (satisfaction, joy, peace), half (maintaining, it’s going, hanging on), or empty running on fumes (disappointed, no energy, unmotivated)? This is a valuable step, honest reflection helps you to understand where you are at before you can determine what it is you must do to get where you need, want, or plan to be.
    Lastly, fill up, perform the maintenance, maybe a complete overhaul is needed. Life requires our attention and participation. Ponder ways that you can transition to servitude to your circumstances; go on more dates with your spouse if you need to connect, register for that training that will benefit your role at work or grow you mentally, avoid any actions that cause you to overspeed or spend money you’re trying to save, don’t go to the mall or looking at daily Amazon deals. Let’s not end up on the side of the road waiting for the AAA guy because there is nothing left within us to get us where we need to go, the road of life is calling us, and we got miles ahead of us. Let’s get in and drive!

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