Lopsided Living Recognizes Adding Anything Affects Everything

Welcome to Day 10 of 31 Simple Ways to Embrace Lopsided Living!

Recognizing the way adding anything affects everything in our lives is a vital part of Lopsided Living.Several years ago I finally had to admit a harsh truth about myself:  I’m a control freak.

My need for perfection, to be seen as capable, to never disappoint, and the desire for approval were destroying me … and they were costing me more than realized.

I spent a lot of time studying Scripture relating to biblical womanhood, priorities, and my identity in Christ. In fact, I spent the better part of two years digging deep into those passages and looking at the words and phrases, comparing them to other passages of Scripture about women.

What I learned changed me. By October of 2007, the year I turned 36, the Lord had guided me to a new understanding of what it means to be a woman who fears the Lord and how that needed to play out in my every day, very real life.

One of the biggest lessons I learned was simple {and yet incredibly hard to do!} and it’s the focus of today’s post …

Lopsided Living Recognizes Adding Anything Affects Everything

This one is a game changer, y’all!

When you read the title, you probably thought one of two things, “No, it doesn’t!” or “So what?” I get it, I really do. Because 10 years ago I would have thought one or both of those things myself.  We don’t think about how everything we do affects everything else — at least we don’t think about it a lot.

But it does.

The Lord showed me how every time I said yes to something, even something small, it would affect everything else I did. If I said yes to making cupcakes for my daughter’s class at school, it would have an impact on the other plans I had for that day.  If I agreed to teach a Sunday School class, that time to prepare would have to come from somewhere.

My time is finite, no matter how much I wish it were not.

And yours is as well.

Recognizing the way adding anything affects everything in our lives is a vital part of Lopsided Living.

This isn’t to say don’t add anything. Let’s face it, that’s not really an option for most of us. Our days get full and there are many times when we don’t have the final say in what gets added.

This is less about what we add or what gets added and more about recognizing the ways additions affect not just on our available time — but they can also have serious impacts on our emotional, mental, spiritual, and physical state as well.

We’ll be looking more closely at HOW we can make God-honoring decisions about what we add to our schedules later in this series. But today, since it’s Monday, it seems a good time to invite you to look over what you will add to your calendar this week and begin thinking about how it will affect the other commitments and priorities you have.

So that’s your simple way for today:


Here’s what that looks like for me — I have 21 days to finish writing the manuscript for Praying for Girls. That is the number one priority for me this week {and honestly, the rest of October}. That means anything that comes up during my prime writing time needs serious evaluation before saying yes. Basically, I know right now I can’t add anything new to the calendar this week without it compromising my writing time.

So, what about you … how does adding anything affect everything in your life?

#LopsidedLiving truth: Adding anything affects everything. Click To Tweet

Living lopsided,

Teri Lynne

Yesterday’s post: We are works in process {and that’s okay!}

Coming tomorrow: Embrace the season of life you’re in right now

Index to every post in this series here.

Read the Psalms this summer with Scripture Dig!


  1. Strangely enough, Teri, I’m 36 and I feel this is the very lesson God is teaching me right now. I tend to think of commitments in blocks of time, so I decide whether or not I can give away that block of time. But it’s the relationship of that block to the next block and the next that I’ve been missing. Commitments bleed over and compound and leave me with withered blocks of time to offer my family, even when it all made sense on paper. Thank you for this reminder. I already sat down with my planner and started figuring what I could take off the schedule for this week. 🙂

    • Katie, I totally understand. And this, “Commitments bleed over and compound and leave me with withered blocks of time to offer my family, even when it all made sense on paper.” Just so much yes!!!! It does all make sense on paper but paper doesn’t ever factor in people, does it?

      Also, maybe it takes getting to 36 to be ready to accept the truth that we can’t do it all. 🙂

  2. So true! My goal for this week is to add MARGIN. To not make my “to do” list so long each day. I had what I thought was a really small “to do” list for today. And wouldn’t you know it, something came up that does need to be done today. But since I had margin, everything will get done with little stress. You are so right – one little addition affects everything.

    • Thank you, Cathy, for sharing that! I’m so glad it isn’t just me. I also like to leave room in the margins for whatever comes up — and then to enjoy the space on those rare days when nothing does come up.

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