Stop Grunting

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So most of the sounds my three month old baby girl makes are like a cat….she gets mad, she yells (like you’ve pulled her tail!)…..she’s happy, she purrs (I’m serious, it sounds like she’s purring!) But lately she’s been trying to grab things more and a new sound has surfaced…the grunt. It’s kind of a constant grunt that she does while she’s trying to grab onto something, but it gets really loud if she’s becomes too frustrated.

Today she was trying to grab her foot and she was getting very frustrated and nearly started throwing a fit. Instead she stopped, took a deep breath, and then when she relaxed she was able to focus and get her foot!

It started me thinking of one of my struggles….trying too hard….on the wrong thing! Sometimes we don’t need to change the amount of effort we’re giving, we just need to change the focus of our efforts.

One example of this was when I was giving birth to my second child. Between the combination of exhaustion and pain, I was not putting my focus in the right place. When it came time to push I was beginning to feel like I couldn’t do it. I pushed a few times and then let out a loud grunt and my attending doctor (whom I had just met the week prior, long story….) said, “Don’t yell, concentrate on pushing.” So I took a deep breath, visualized what I needed to do and where I needed to focus and then on the next contraction I pushed with only the thoughts of “Here she comes!”. And sure enough, my daughter came out on that push! All I had to do was push away the distractions, no matter how pressing they seemed (and we know that the pain and exhaustion of child-birth are pretty intense!) and focus on what I wanted to accomplish. Not only did I accomplish my goal much quicker but I also did not seem to have as much pain and fatigue, because I was not focused on it.

My most recent example of this internal battle was this past week. My husband and I have recently been asked to help facilitate a program for our church and at the time we accepted the invitation it seemed fine. However, this past week as other life’s obstacles and obligations mounted and we were finding out more about what our responsibilities would be regarding this new assignment….well, all I could think of is “How in the world am I going to do all this?”

Unfortunately I took the wrong route, I started staying up later, skipping my exercise, not taking any “breaks” and hurrying around like a chicken with its head cut off. Where did that get me? Well, not where I wanted to be, that’s for sure!

Finally, today I (not purposely) fell asleep while feeding my baby and didn’t wake up til two hours later! At first I was panicked cause all I could think of was the lost time. But then as I realized how much better I felt with a little sleep on board, how much more clearly I could think, how much more efficiently I worked…and I started perking up. I could now focus on the job(s) at hand rather than how stressed/worried and tired I was.

Once I stopped all my “grunting” and took a deep breath/break and refocused my energies I felt like things will all work out. Besides having the Lord to help me I need to remember to help myself! I will reach whatever end I am focused on, if I am focused on stress I will just create more of it. An awful never-ending cycle. If I focus on my goal(s) and take regular breaks to refocus and release tension I will be successful. Besides grunting is pretty annoying anyway!

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