Tag Archives: people-pleasing

Book Review: Breaking Busy

Breaking Busy

When do you reach your capacity? Breaking Busy says you can identify your limits and stop saying yes to every request out of guilt. The author, Alli Worthington tells of her own pitfalls in the struggle to keep up with the demands of running a successful business and raising five boys. She shares the process she had to learn to abandon the never ending need to please, and how it provided a foundation to live out her calling.

I have to say, she stepped on my toes. I didn’t realize how comfortable I had become with my own busyness. I thought it filled a need in my heart, but Alli says it just masked the deeper need to be a people-pleasing machine. She reminds us to ask ourselves if escaping reality is easier than reducing the To-Do list. And she provides a voice of reason, by encouraging us to “be realistic about your time and energy!”

In a culture of busyness being our barometer of worth, Alli’s book is a refreshing reminder that Jesus calls us away to rest with Him. In fact, Chapter 10 might just be the most important chapter in the whole book, because it tackles the lies we believe about where our self-worth comes from. Alli gives permission to say, “We don’t have to do it all.” She calls us back to a relationship with the Lord and His Word that fills the empty places of striving. She says, “God’s Word is continually new to us because it speaks through the filter of the circumstance of life we are in.”

Do you struggle with busyness, worry, making decisions or communication? This book is for you! Alli provides the framework for weighing each opportunity, so that you can even pass up great opportunities to be ready for the best option for you. She even offers online tools to help implement the principles laid out in the book.

Get this book! It is from the heart of encourager who has learned to overcome the cycle of busyness in order to experience the fullness of life!


Disclosure: I received a copy of this book plus a book bundle from Zondervan in exchange for my thoughts and opinions of Breaking Busy.

Welcome to Momhood

I am a bad mom.
There. I’ve said it. I’ve laid it all on the table.
I have two adult children and I still try to make life all better for them.
Wasn’t I supposed to let go of that role when they were in elementary school? I bandaged the cuts and brushed off their knees, with a kiss to make it all better.
bandaged knee
When did I adopt the role that said, “I have to keep everyone happy”? I scurry around trying to be the peace-maker and hand-holder and all of that scurrying leaves me empty and scarred. As moms, do we enable our kids to grow, when we are the go-to person in their lives? Where is the fine line between being an enabler and being a springboard to launch them into adulthood? In their book, The Cure for the “Perfect” Life, Kathi Lipp and Cheri Gregory point out that “we live with the illusion that we have some measure of control over how other people behave. We’re like a three-year-old kid strapped into his car seat and using his Fisher-Price steering wheel, absolutely certain that he’s the one driving the car.
It’s crazy feeling that we have all the responsibility for other people’s lives, with none of the authority to make a difference.” (p. 171)
I gave up that authority with each birthday we celebrated. My children entered the pre-teen years with an earnest desire to make their own decisions. They went through the teens with independence as their motto. Letting go actually began the day I gave birth and gave them opportunity to breathe on their own. Why then, do I strive to take back control and seek to guide them still? Isn’t that something I label creatively as nurturing? When I hide my controlling tendencies in nice sounding terms, it makes me sound like a “good” mom. Yet, my whole job description as a parent is to prepare my kids to make their own decisions. And that cannot happen when I second-guess their judgment. Is there a better way for me to show them love? Lipp & Gregory say, “there is a love that goes deeper than hurting when others hurt- it’s the kind of love that allows those we love to be in pain so they can become the kind of people God has designed them to be.” (p. 175)
Now, I am the last person to want to leave someone else in pain. I am a people-pleaser with a capital P. But if I understand that I am not to rescue others from their problems, maybe I will embrace their journey to the Throne of Mercy by getting out of the way. And that is the best way to be an enabler.
I don’t have this all figured out. I’m sure I will regress and fall back into patterns of habit that are within my comfort zone. So here are two questions I will ask:
“1. Is this the best solution for them?
2. Is this the best solution for me?” (The Cure for the “Perfect” Life, p. 178)
Lipp & Gregory explain, one way to advocate healthy self-care is to tell myself, disappointment isn’t deadly.

When I release my kids to experience pain, they are empowered to reach out to God as their own Rescuer.
Here is my question for you:
How have you learned to release your adult children to the consequences of their own choices?
Originally published September 3, 2014 at sallyswords