I’m still very much on the New Year high and I’m convinced there is nothing wrong with that. Some people I chat with hate this season but I thrive in it.

The month of January gets me pumped and–I don’t know about you but–I’m utilizing the hype to make myself better.

Yesterday I was listening to one of my go to podcasts (storybrand.com) and the host, Don Miller, was discussing a book called Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown. It only took a few minutes of them talking about it until I gave in and bought the book. Let me tell you right now…

This book is going to change my life.

Maybe it was the right time and place but I can’t tell you how much I need focus right now. My life is so… cluttered …and messy. Just…. ughhh.

I’m 28 years old and I don’t know if I’m a teacher …or a filmmaker …or minister … or a writer? I’ve gotten caught up in the hype of making hype and noise but I want my life to be more than hype. I’ve built up a successful filmmaking company and helped lead The Living Person to where it is today …but I’m wandering. What is my direction? What is my purpose?

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve worked really hard to create meaning and purpose in my life.

I literally dubbed 2016 the “Year of No” in an effort to cut out everything that wouldn’t contribute to St. Ed’s, We’ll Be Alright, and The Living Person–but the point is that it’s still too much. I’m still divided. Which is nuts because I literally quit about about seven things: Filipino Martial Arts, Blogging for 3 different websites, cutting down my wedding clients, my leading role in my parish youth ministry program, and a handful of other small things. Are you serious?

No one is better at sabotaging my life than me.

It’s crazy to look back at my life and see how completely nuts I was but I’m lucky enough to fight through another day. If this book can inspire me to sit and think hard about the one thing my life is about, then I’m all in. Sometimes I think I know what it is… but I’m not satisfied with that. Honestly, I want the confidence and security of knowing I worked hard to figure out my “one thing.”

And that won’t be revealed to me over night but rather through constant searching and persistent prayer.

I wanted to leave you with my favorite part of the book thus far. Please note, none of the following words are mine and if you want to quote or give credit, please give it where it is due and maybe even consider supporting him by buying his book. It would be awesome to have some people to share this journey with.


The Idea that “You Can Have It All”

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown, 15-16

The idea that we can have it all and do it all is not new. The myth has been peddled for so long, I believe virtually everyone alive today is infected with it. It is sold in advertising. It is championed in corporations. It is embedded in job descriptions that provide huge lists of required skills and experience as standard.

It is embedded in university application that require dozens of extracurricular actives.

What is new is how especially damaging this myth is today, in a time when choice and expectations have increased exponentially. It results in stressed people trying to cram yet more activities into their already over scheduled lives. It creates corporate environments that talk about work/life balance but still expect their employees to be on their smartphones 24/7/365. It leads to staff meetings where as many as ten “top priorities” are discussed with no sense of irony at all.

The word priority  came into the English language in the 1400s.

It was singular. It meant the very first or prior thing. It stayed singular for the next five hundred years.  Only in the 1900s did we pluralize the term and start talking about priorities. Illogically, we reasoned that by changing the word we could bend reality. Somehow we would now be able to have multiple “first” things. People and companies routinely try to do just that. One leader told me of his experience in a company that talked of “Pri-1, Pri-2, Pri-3, Pri-4, and Pri-5.”

This gave the impression of many things being the priority but actually meant nothing was. 


If you found this to be powerful then hit me up. Read the book with me and let’s move forward together. I’ll keep ya’ll updated with my favorite parts and the current things that I’m working on. So far the hard commitments are to finish the book and to really cut out some of the excess materials in my life, yet another awesome challenge from this book. Just wait until you see my closet. Cheers to a life of “less but better” and cutting out the all the things that distract me from my priority.

Thank you God for this day.

Onward and upward,*

Jurell

*I love this phrase and stole it from my awesome neighbor Brian Byers.

 

 

 

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