Do You Trust the Overload Gauge on the Dashboard of Your Life?

My porch swing where I go for refreshment and reflection.

I hate to say this, but I overdid it last week—all good things—all with people I love. I will not debate what I could have or should have done differently. Honestly, I don’t know, so maybe nothing. However, by the weekend I was spent. I had to reschedule friends and family for today. I hate not coming through on my word. If I tell you I will do something, I have considered if I can do it, if I have time for it, and then I make it a priority. I do my best to keep my word.

I don’t often overdo, because I am a fanatic about not overextending myself. But every once in a while it happens. The family and friends I had to reschedule are sweet and understood.

Even so, the whole experience reminded me of how important it is for me to live my priorities and trust my gut when I feel I am getting close to the overload gauge on the dashboard of my life.

Do you ever feel overextended? Like you are failing the people you care about the most?

When I overextend myself, I cannot give my best to others. I am depleted. I don’t think clearly and my body screams, “Just lie down already!” When I overextend myself, I am not myself.

My process in deciding how I use my days wisely (to not overextend and yet do what God has for me) always starts with my priorities. My priorities guide my decisions. I have prayerfully, over time, determined my priorities. Now, to the best of my ability, I live them—not always well, but I try. My priorities are the people and things that God has told me—This is my plan for you for your time on earth. These are roles/things that you and only you can do. No one can do it all. We need to know what is from God for us and what is not.

When I say no to an invitation that is not my priority, I am saying yes to someone or something else who is a priority to me. Last week many of my priorities landed in my life at the same time. It was a great time! It doesn’t often happen like that.

Today I am catching up from last week. I cannot keep up that pace. The rest from the weekend and today to catch up is exactly what I need to be me again.

A life on overload keeps you from being your best. How do you react when you feel on overload? Do you have a hard time saying no to things/people you know are not things you and only you can do? What do you need to be refreshed, more you, and back on track for what God has for you to do?






Brenda Garrison is an author and speaker who empowers women with the confidence to live their calling. Brenda is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science Degree in Ministry Leadership with a Concentration in Women’s Ministry at Moody Bible Institute. She and her husband, Gene, are the parents of three young adult daughters and live near Metamora, IL.

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