Scott Hodge


Tweaking My Rhythm

Apr 13, 2007

More and more, I am realizing that my life has become one of constant reevaluation and adjustment.  What was effective six or eight months ago in how I lead, prioritize and manage my time is not necessarily effective today.  And because of that, I’m realizing that I am having to make constant changes in the rhythm of my life – which feels like about every 6 months or so.

For me, this is all a part of growing MYSELF while God grows our
church.  And believe me, there’s a lot of things that I am absolutely clueless on,
but one thing I am certain about is that as The Orchard continues to grow, I too must continue to grow.  Which means that my personal rhythm has to constantly be reevaluated, tweaked and adjusted.  And sometimes….downright overhauled!

Lately, part of that growth has had to do with the rhythm of my schedule and time management.  In fact, recently I came to the realization that I was unintentionally sabotaging myself and our team by giving the BEST PART of my day for things that didn’t necessarily require my best – which also meant that I was giving the WORST PART of my day for some of the things that DID deserve my best.  And when this happens, EVERYONE loses.

For example…  As much as I hate waking up in the morning (which might have to do with the fact that I hate going to bed before 1:00AM…), I have come to the realization that mornings are my best and most productive time for things like writing, studying, dreaming, creative thinking, journaling, and getting my mind focused on the big picture vision that God has for my life and The Orchard. 

So instead of using that time to accomplish things that don’t necessarily require the best part of my day (i.e. meetings, replying to emails, staff coaching, appointments, etc…), I’ve now decided to use my afternoons to focus on these areas.  And what I’m discovering is that because my mind is MORE refreshed and MORE focused on the big picture, I am actually now MORE EFFECTIVE at contributing in these areas than before!  Even though I was giving so many of these areas the BEST part of my day!

I’ve also adjusted my weekly "appointment" rhythm.  So instead of spreading my appointments out over two or three days a week, I now have one afternoon a week dedicated to meeting with people.  And of course, I’m also learning that just because someone thinks they need to meet with ME, chances are – there is probably someone else on our team who will be able to help them a lot more than I can. Appointment delegation…  It benefits everyone.

So anyway…enough rambling.  Let me give a quick altar call…  Every head bowed, every eye closed…..organ is playing "Just As I Am"…

What about you?  Does your rhythm need tweaking right now?  What’s stopping it from happening?  Could you be holding your staff, church, organization back from taking a huge leap forward because you are not tweaking, adjusting or making the changes you know you need to make?

Yes-ah…  I see that hand.  Ah hah, yes, another hand – there in the back…  Hands are going up all over the room…. 

Ok, sorry.  A little flashback there.

11 Responses to “Tweaking My Rhythm”

  1. great thoughts. I feel the same way, and I intend to work on my schedule as soon as things slow down! :) I know that is what we always say “when things slow down I’ll do it” or “I know it’s crazy but it’s about to slow down”. Appreciate your thoughts. It really speaks to the craziness I feel myself in right now. Hopefully you’ll be able to avoid those instant messages that pop up at just the wrong times! :)

  2. One more thing: I’ve been working on my rhythm now for a few weeks… it’s really hard. I think it all comes down to boundaries. What things do I need to set in stone and just say no to? I’m working to get all of my appointments on Wednesdays/Thursday, but it can be tough when someone on staff wants to meet on a day I’m studying, etc. I think the thing I struggle with most is, when I do set a boundary, how do I communicate that with others I work with all the time? How do I say “I really need that time blocked out for myself” without sounding like I’m not a team player? How do I say “I have a huge bit of planning I’m doing for my area, so I really would rather meet on that next week, etc” in a nice way that truly conveys that I care but that I am really busy myself? Does anyone else struggle with those same things?

  3. edith Zepeda says:

    Amen Brother!! I too must adjust.
    For myself it is working on me and QUALITY TIME with Gabe. He is at that great age where he and I can become friends as well as Mother and Son. There are times when everyone needs something from me and poor Gabe patiently waits.I have to learn to say “NO!” Then there is how my happiness is stolen by a job that I just plain outgrew.I quite frankly dont want to be there anymore. There are so many dire needs there and I am the problem solver. As you greatly put it someone else could help them and do a way better job. It’s easier to come to me. My adjustment is going to be to look for a job that will give me “JOY” when I am doing it. That way I will be happier in everyday living.Thanks for the pep talk!

  4. Allen Arnn says:

    Great stuff. I heard a couple of years ago Bill Hybels talk about making sure the best part of your day is given to the most important stuff. I try to do that today, but sometimes I slip into the urgent, easy and unproductive instead of blocking out my sharpest time periods (Hybel’s called them ENERGY BURSTS) for my most important work.
    Thanks for the reminder. I need to work on this.

  5. scott, I hear you. I am in the same boat my friend. I am very productive in the early mornings and late at night. But it is hard to “schedule firm time” and stay with it.
    Keep up the encouragement…. I am raising my hand, can I come down to the front?

  6. Scott says:

    Great post.
    Often look back and reflect where I was, where I am, and where I need to go.
    Most of the time I am amazed how “stupid” I was, how far I have come, and how far I still have to go.
    Larry – I struggle with setting the boundaries as well. The part I struggle with is knowing when I need to stick to my guns, at the risk of missing an opportunity God has put before me.

  7. Chris Bell says:

    Preach it brother!

  8. Erik says:

    so should afternoon appointments be offended that we are going to get the hodge-leftovers?

  9. Jon says:

    Count me in Scott. Thanks for the reminder, especially when it comes to giving your best time to the most important stuff!

  10. Flaviu says:

    on the jack, my brutha! thanks for the reminder to always filter what we do and re:evaluate. one of the things that help me with staying on target and focused on what matters is my accountability partner whom i meet once every 2 weeks over some serious Sbux. that brings me in line. i’m sure you know how much Sbux has to do with focusing, right Scott?

  11. Joni says:

    So I should be in bed now? Is that what I hear? Hmm. Blogging at 1 am might not help me get up in the morning but it does keep toddler fingers from plAying WITH thE capS lock key while I’m trying to type during the day. This is what I get for having coffee after dinner. What was this post about again?
    Seriously, in my occupation/ministry as mom, this will be interesting to ponder. So far I’m doing so-so on setting time guidelines and I think I need to look at this some more.

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