| | | |

When You Need to Slow Down: The First Step in Conquering an Over-Busy Schedule

When You Need to Slow Down: The First Step in Conquering an Over-Busy Schedule

The best ideas are always thought up in the shower.

I’ve heard that old adage numerous times, and I agree with it, but it wasn’t until a few weeks ago, that I was finally struck with why it’s so true. It’s the quiet!!

If like me, you were slow to catch on to the reasoning behind that sage advice, think about it. The shower might be one of the only times you don’t have the world shouting at you — no TV, no music, no people, no social media, no books.

No. other. input.

It’s just you, the hot water, and the quiet.


And suddenly, you can think again.

Life becomes crowded quickly – our minds cluttered, our hearts overwhelmed. Schedules, responsibilities, obligations — and we keep adding to the list!

The more we add, the less rest we find — true in our individual lives, and true within our families. Sporting events, church commitments, work obligations. Extended family, friends, social media. School, work, clubs, and ministry. Our family schedules are bursting at the seams, and we can barely catch our breaths. 

When we rework our schedules in August and September, we pledge to do things differently this year, but we catch ourselves in October and November running the same hamster wheel of commitments and we wonder how we got on — and where we hop off.

Thinking about our schedules, we often feel helpless, out-of-control, and anxious. Knowing that the holidays are around the corner, only adds another whole layer of busy.

Our families are running so fast, we are frantic. No time for relationship, or dreaming or living on purpose. We’ve lost laughter and spontaneity and the margin we so desperately need.

Friends, we are in need of a proverbial shower!

Rest, quiet — no. more. shouting.

In each family, the “shower” might be different, but every family needs one – a time of quiet, a time of together, a time when you can just be together without the world shouting in your ears.

We can make excuses — I keep blaming the baby on the crazy in our life right now — and while a newborn definitely throws a curveball into routine, much of our “busy” is our own doing. 

So how do we take a “shower” for our families? How do we slow up, quiet down, and rest?

Well, the truth is, I don’t know.

I don’t know, but God does, and you probably do too, if you take the time to listen.

Are you running from the quiet, filling your time and mind with anything, everything, to avoid what you might find, hear, or feel in the slow, quiet moments?

If you are struggling with an over-busy schedule, are lacking contentment or purpose, or wonder why you are doing many of the things you’re doing, may I suggest taking time to evaluate how you’re living?

As you do, let me suggest three steps to take and some questions to get you started. As you progress through each:

  • Pray. Be honest with God. Let the walls come down. Surrender and seek God’s guidance. Pray — and keep praying. Ask the Holy Spirit to work in each family members’ life to open them up to the idea of slowing down. Ask the Holy Spirit to grant you discernment, direction, and determination to walk in the way that He leads.
  • Make time for reflection. Take time to think through these or similar questions and honestly reflect on the answers. Journaling your thoughts might help you reflect more slowly and deeply. The goal isn’t to rush this, but to listen to what your own soul is saying and to how God is speaking.
  • Make time for relationship. Talk with your spouse or a good friend as you go through this process. Share what you’re finding and ask for input. You are not in this alone. Use this exercise as another way to connect.
  • Make time for rhythms. Set aside time for reflection and connection as part of your daily, weekly, or monthly routines.
  • Keep at it, and try again when you fail. In other words, grace.

1. Inspect yourself.

Where am I taking on too much?

What do I long to be doing but don’t make time for in my daily life?

What goals/dreams do I have and how am I (or am I not) working toward those?

What is draining my energy or causing me anxiety? How do I do less of this?

What brings me life? How do I do more of that?


2. Include your spouse.

Where are we as a couple and how do we each feel about our relationship?

What dreams or vision do we each have for our marriage?

What are the things we’re doing that hinder those goals or help move us toward those goals?

What can we learn from those mistakes and victories?

How does that affect our daily choices and schedule?


3. Involve your family.

What do you love to do together as a family? What activities do you enjoy? What brings you closer together and helps you feel more connected?

What activities are you participating in that don’t bring “life” to your family?

Where is your biggest source of tension in your family’s schedule?

What works? {And what doesn’t work?}

What changes can you make to eliminate some of the tension and add in more connection?


I’m praying these questions help get you thinking and working toward a richer, more connected life, marriage, and family. I am asking these same questions and working toward this same goal. We are in this together, and I am praying for you!


Question for You:

Where do you feel most rushed, disconnected or stuck in your own life and what is one thing you can do today to move out of that pit?



Similar Posts


  1. Erika, you are simply the best! Thank you as always for your encouragement, just when I need it most!

Comments are closed.