Sunday, September 25, 2011

Base line Life

Base Lines in Project Managemet are pretty useful tools. They track where you should be in terms of expenditures and successes and let you identify places you need to pay more attention to. For example, if you are almost our of budgeted funds but only half way through the project, there may be an issue.

While some projects are forced away from their base line by major events like corporate reorganizations or major budget shifts the reality is that most suffer from "scope creep". That's what we call the little requests that come in for favors, "just one more feature", or trying something new.

Scope Creep jumps us in life, too. One more family commitment, promising to bake that cake by next Sunday, or picking up a new set of work out videos because the last ones didn't do much for you. We often make a good promise on a good thing but don't remember to take into account all the other good commitments we already have.

I thought about encouraging you to clean up your schedule a bit and spend time giving away toys, tools, books, videos, and whatever else you have that has been doing nothing but gathering dust for years. We've done a few rounds of that lately and I can assure you life is much better! There are things I've been beating myself up about; I spent good money on something but never really used it. My personal monkey is books; I have lots of them. Really....lots. Like "pared down to just four bookshelves full" lots.

That was the planned conversation; a sort of "Think about what's important" kind of encouragement. Then I spent some time in our Prayer Chapel at church and spoke to God about the needs written on little prayer request cards. Needs like wanting to beat cancer so you can see your child go to kindergarten. Or a family trying to cope with an accident at work where someone won't be coming home, ever. I sadly realized that what had been important before paled in comparison with what my brothers and sisters are facing.

So, yeah, take those diet books and workout videos to the library. On your way home park it on a pew somewhere and open yourself up to God about how you can really focus on what's important in life. Skip worrying about Monday morning at work and spend time on the life and love we take for granted. Apologize for that argument, take that walk with someone special, and don't equate earned income with personal value.

If realizing you're way off base makes you cry, well, you're not the only one.

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