As I prayed for you during quarantine and how I could best serve and encourage you, God laid on my heart to ask some of my friends to share their wisdom and expertise. I am so excited to bring you a series of guest posts from my friends. We began with my friend Ericka Eller’s post on stress, then Sarah Nichols’ post on anxiety, and last week we heard from my friend Rebecca Hamlin, LCSW on peace amidst a world that feels like it’s on Fire. This week I want to introduce you to my friend – Kimberly Crossland.
Kimberly and I met and have served together at MOPS. Kimberly manages her own company where she helps time-strapped parents jump start their business and keep the momentum. Oh and she has her hands full with two adorable toddler boys (can I say – wonder-mom?!). I am so excited to have Kimberly share with us about balancing work and motherhood during these crazy times of stay-at-home orders and working sans daycare.
You can connect with Kimberly via her website: https://www.thefocusdrivenbiz.com/, on instagram @thefocusdrivenbiz, on Facebook at: facebook.com/thefocusdrivenbiz and/or join her free Facebook group at facebook.com/groups/thefocusdrivenbiz.
The Tug-of-War Between Burnout and Burning Desire
by Kimberly Crossland
A few nights ago, I let out a sigh of relief as I sat down with my boys cozied up in my lap. It had been yet another long day of the same routine.
- Wake up
- Squeeze in work before anyone else was awake
- Make eggs, fruit, and pancakes (the same breakfast as any other day)
- Manage screaming, excited children as they run around ready to get their wiggles out
- Get said kiddos calm and sneak my laptop over to the play area to work on some administrative business tasks
- Make sandwiches and fruit (the other ordinary lunch in our house)
- Put on a movie for quiet time and tiptoe into my office for more work
- Realize I haven’t defrosted meat for dinner and sprint to the freezer
- Make dinner with still half-frozen meat
- More crazy running around with the kids
- Bath and bedtime
Since quarantine started, days have bled together feeling more and more mundane. It’s been easy for me to forget the small wins in parenting. That night, as we popped open their Veggie Tales devotional to read, right there was the verse I needed more than the kids did.
Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder.
Romans 12:11-12 MSG
As moms, the feeling of burnout is as familiar. We wear the badge of master multitasker with honor, despite the fact that internally we’re gasping for air in tidal waves of overwhelm. While we proudly share our kid’s accomplishments and milestones online, we’re simultaneously drowning in the weight we carry on our shoulders to get the family there. It’s work we’re proud to have the responsibility to complete, but the burnout that comes with it can stunt us from pursuing other areas of our life.
Feeling stunted has never been more true than in 2020 where moms have struggled to come up for air. We’re struggling to constantly find something new to do with our kids. We’re gasping for “us” time despite having nothing but time at home — the place where we should feel more relaxed. We’re sneaking around our house, trying to get a few minutes of alone time to complete a task (or just go to the bathroom in peace).
It’s in moments like these that we start to play the what-if game.
- What if we had that giant inflatable slide so our kids could feel more entertained without needing us all the time?
- What if we had the ability to hit the road and go camping for the entire summer, keeping the feeling of adventure alive?
- What if we had the resources to pursue our passions alongside motherhood?
It’s easy to think that if we had more in life — more toys, more adventures, more of our identity outside of motherhood — we’d be able to resolve the burnout we’re feeling. But God tells us otherwise.
Those who trust in their riches will fall, but the righteous will thrive like a green leaf.
God offers a friendly reminder that abundance isn’t found in things, Instagram-worthy trip photos (that hide the reality that the family bickered the entire trip) or a career. Abundance is shaped by our relationship with Him. This fact is something I’m constantly reminded of as I navigate my role as a mom and business owner under one roof.
In my business, where I help parents pursue their professional passion by starting a business online, I talk a lot about mindset. That’s because mindset is so critical for how we perceive the world around us. We often stop ourselves from going full force towards something we love because others without kids and with more time have done it before us. We worry about what the world will think, so we shelter inside our four walls where we find safety in our identity as mothers.
But Christ offers us a different route. He fuels us with a burning desire to do more because he wants us to be others-minded.
While motherhood is the epitome of putting someone else’s needs before our own, there are times when women feel an even greater pull to extend that reach outside of the walls of our home. Sometimes, this desire to do more leads to volunteering for a role at church, at MOPS, or in the community. Sometimes it leads to pursuing a passion project or starting a new business.
No matter what the burning desire looks like in your life, here’s my hope for you — when you’re burnt out, I pray you’ll find grounding in Christ. And when that burning desire hits, I hope you’ll listen, leaping after your next steps in a Christ-like pursuit by being a bright light for those you feel called to serve in this world.