3 Simple Ways To Make Your Life Easier
We all have that room in our house. That one that serves as the catch-all for months or even years. It’s that place where you put all of the stuff that you don’t know where to put. It’s where husbands put everything that their wives tell them to find a place for. It’s the floor of that room with all of the other things that have no place. Right?
But then that day comes. You know the day. The one where that room has to be cleaned. That day stinks. No one likes that day. That day requires hard work. It’s on that day that in a moment of frustration you realize if you would’ve just put in a little more effort all along the way that you wouldn’t be required to put in so much effort now.
If you just would’ve worked at a few small things over the past few months or years, this day could’ve been avoided altogether and your life would be a little easier.
This makes us wonder. Are there a few things in our lives that if we would just put a little more effort into along the way, would prevent us from making a huge mess that we will have to clean up later?
We think there are. And we think that to find those things out, we would do well to consult the wisest man who ever lived. His name was Solomon and he wrote an entire book of advice in the Bible called Proverbs.
Here are three principles from Proverbs that we believe, if implemented, will make your life easier.
1. Keep Learning
“Prize her highly and she will exalt you; she will honor you if you embrace her”
Solomon is referring to wisdom here. The book of Proverbs is covered with similar encouragement. The teaching is simple. Learn and keep learning. Listen to people who are smarter than you, older than you, and more experienced than you. In addition to that, learn to feed yourself. Learn to like to read. Learn to study God’s word on your own. Cultivate a curious mind and develop the tools to satisfy that curiosity.
There are countless studies on the value of wisdom and learning. Too often we dull ourselves in our spare time and our car rides with things that are mindless or entertaining. There is value in reducing how often we are entertained and increasing how often we are learning and thinking. This is particularly true when we are learning from God’s word and thinking on spiritual things.
Take a step towards gaining wisdom. Find a pocket of your day where you can sacrifice resting or being entertained in favor of learning.
2. Get Up Early
“A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man.”
How many of us sleep until that last possible minute before we absolutely have to get ready for work/ get the kids up/ put the trash on the street/ get to the gym?
How many of us hit snooze more than once?
How many of us also say that we would finally do that thing that we’ve resolved to do for the past four New Year’s if we just had a little more time?
What would happen if we just woke up 30 minutes earlier than we absolutely have to? And, more to the point, would we really miss those 30 minutes? Would we get to 3:45pm and think; “Man, I’m exhausted… must be that half hour of sleep I lost being responsible this morning”?
What could we do with an extra hour? Oh man. Now we are talking about some serious responsibility!
We could have a quiet time, spend some time in prayer, make a healthy lunch so we don’t settle for greasefest again, read, have quiet moments of sanity before the kids wake up, go to the gym, run, or just sit and revel in our new-found discipline.
Even if none of those new opportunities are compelling, we should still wake up earlier. Look at the warning if we don’t do that, if we cultivate a habit of laziness. Laziness tends to just produce more laziness and soon we are slack in all areas of our life and we’ve got another one of those big messes to clean up. No one wants one of those. What if we just got up a little earlier? It seems smart.
3. Choose Good Friends
“Whoever walks with the wise becomes wise, but the companion of fools will suffer harm.”
Have you ever heard that old adage, “Show me your friends and I’ll show you your future”? Or maybe the slightly more academic, “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with”? Solomon would agree with this idea.
Our friends are important. Their values become our values. Their ambitions our ambitions. The way they raise their kids influences how we raise ours. There are infinite ways our friends impact us.
So often we choose friends by default. Life throws us into the same place with someone else and we find that we can relate to them at the end of the day. We discover a few things in common and BOOM: friends.
Did you ever stop to consider whether or not you’d like to become more like them? Because you will. It’s inevitable. No one is immune to the pull of close relationships and influences. You will become a combination of those you spend the most time with.
So, have you chosen friends who love God or are apathetic towards him? Have you chosen friends that you admire? Are they smart with their money? Do you respect their priorities?
In short, as you examine the impact your friends have on you, are you becoming wise or foolish?
These things don’t feel like they’re making my life easier… they feel like work.
Well… yeah. They are work. But we believe that if we trust in the wisdom of Proverbs and put a small amount of effort into these things all along the way, that we will avoid that day when we have to clean up the big mess later. So while these things are a little more effort now, they will make our lives much easier in the long run.