imgres-2This word crept into my life a couple of weeks ago, and I haven’t stopped thinking about it. The context was that I was in the middle of doing a personal LifePlan, and the facilitator asked me a simple question: “What RESTORES You?

When you look up the word RESTORE, so many definitions bubble up: “bring back”; “reinstate”; “return to a former condition, place or position”; “repair or renovate”.

I wasn’t real sure what he was asking, but as he pressed deeper the question was simply this: “What activities do you do that RESTORE you, that “REPAIR”  you, that “BRING YOU BACK”.

I immediately began talking about some of the things my wife and I enjoy doing together: walking on the beach, traveling, going out to eat, riding our bikes. He stopped me and reminded me that the question wasn’t aimed at my marriage. It was a personal question aimed at what do YOU (Russ) do that restores you? While all the things I do with my wife restore me, he was talking about that personal level of restoration that we all need.

Did you know we all need that?

I spent some time trying to dig into what that means for me, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since.

We’ve been talking about “Time Leadership” in this blog and with these resources, and I realize that while we’ve talked a lot about how to “manage” and “allocate” your time, I’ve forgotten to encourage you to find ways to RESTORE your soul, your body and your spirit. I think I forgot about it because I sometimes have a hard time remembering this part of my life.

It sounds so selfish to think about yourself and what “I” need, yet we would all agree that when we pay attention to these things, we’re “BETTER”:

We’re better spouses.

We’re better friends.

We’re better parents.

We’re better co-workers

We’re better leaders

We’re just better in all areas of our life. So why do we ignore the warning signs that are screaming at us to just take some time to RESTORE?

Here are 4 reasons that I find in me:

#1) I’m Moving Too Fast

I run in every area of my life, from one thing to the next. I’m always looking ahead, always trying to plan and execute, always trying to be proactive. When I’m running, I often ignore the signs telling me to “Slow Down”. There’s just too much to do, and I’m on mission to accomplish all that I can do.

#2) I Don’t Want to be Selfish

I buy into the mentality I mentioned above, we don’t want to be selfish. Our needs should be last, so we take care of everyone else before we address the need in our own life. The problem is that many times we never get to our needs. I don’t want to be selfish, or I don’t want to appear selfish.

#3) I Actually Think I Am Taking Care of Myself

I make some feeble attempts to take care of myself… 10 minutes of exercise, 12 minutes of extra sleep, 5 minutes of personal meditation and prayer, a long walk once in a while. I’ve made my restorative needs a check-off list. I break them down and think that I’m doing them, when in reality I don’t every even get started.

#4) I Have No Idea What This Really Looks Like

I don’t know many people who do this well, so I can’t model after anyone. I haven’t seen it. Jesus is the model I keep coming back to and I see how he was able to do this as we glimpse his life and his priorities, but what does that look like in my world? I don’t see it.

So, we all come to the same conclusion, which is instead of figuring this out, we just continue to ignore it and move on with our lives.

I’m on a quest to figure this out for me.

“What RESTORES you?”

I know in my like there are some things that bring real “repair and renovation”.

When I…

  • Get time in the Word on a regular basis I see things more clearly.
  • Exercise and push myself physically, I have more energy
  • Get time by myself to think, ponder, pray, and dream, I am excited.
  • Experience some adventure in my life, it wakes something up inside of me that goes to sleep.

What about you?

What “RESTORES” You?

How are you going to create some space in your life to first, identify these things and second, to spend some more time pursuing them.



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