This is my first installment of the “What Does It Mean??” blog series! It sounds good to say “Do what you can with what you have where you are” but saying that to someone who is stuck or struggling wouldn’t be particularly helpful.
REAL LIFE EXAMPLE
I just finished our newly revamped homework/art/gaming zone in the family room USING ONLY WHAT WE ALREADY HAD including art I’d never hung and IKEA pieces we only had to move around and modify slightly. The space accomplishes several things:
- places the boys in the hub of the home instead of holed up in their rooms so we can a: monitor their gaming activities and b: assist with homework
- keeps art supplies handy for family use instead of stashed in my office where no one can find it
- gives our home a more welcoming, functional and communal vibe
- provides organization for school and homework supplies plus a natural flow for paperwork and reminders
All of that fits in with our family mission statement AND our vision…and it helps our monthly budget!
I’m a big believer in having a vision for your life. Or at least a vision for the various aspects of your life. For family, it could be everyone in the kitchen together preparing dinner then sitting down to eat outside on a beautiful back deck under the setting sun. For hobbies, it could be planning, planting and tending an English garden then enjoying a cup of tea under the arbor next to a bubbling fountain that attracts butterflies. For work, it could be writing that novel then traveling the country doing readings and book signings in a vintage camper. (OK, I admit, those three are all variations of visions I have for my life)
Doing what you can with what you have where you are starts with vision…
You likely fall into one of two categories:
- You have a vision and struggle with implementing it, or with how slow it seems to be coming along.
- You’re feeling discontent or ineffective and you need to establish a vision for your life.
If you are number two, let me suggest going on a vision quest. It’s a vision board but approach the images in the mindset of “What images represent the vision I have for my life?” You might be surprised at what emerges!
Here’s the link to my post about hosting a vision board party and it includes all the how-tos for creating a board. Click Here.
…then it’s time to take action.
They say goals without action are just dreams. This is where the do what you can with what you have where you are comes into play.
- do what you can
- with what you have
- where you are
Here are some considerations.
DO WHAT YOU CAN
What can you do in your current phase of life? Are you willing to overextend yourself to get closer to your vision or do you need small steps that fit in with the flow of your day?
How can you honor your physical limitations and suit your energy levels?
WITH WHAT YOU HAVE
Think about the gifts and talents you want to utilize.
Consider what special tools, resources or supplies you already own that will help.
WHERE YOU ARE
The Bible mentions “the boundary lines fall in pleasant places” meaning God has strategically placed us in a time and place for us to contribute and thrive. You likely have connections and resources you can maximize that you’re not even aware of yet!
This is about location as well as resources. I love the idea of owning a boutique but it’s not realistic for me right now…so I’m in cahoots with the boutique two miles from my house!
The key to doing what you can with what you have is utilizing your gifts and resources without overextending yourself.
Resist making excuses for your limitations and instead find opportunities. I dream of a collaborative space someday where women can gather to celebrate, work, create art, read and connect. A space outside of our home is a big dream but for right now, I can open my home to women for pampering parties, potluck dinners and “crafternoons.” My goal is to outgrow our home so that having an outside space is a necessity!
Creating the homework/art zone got me one step closer to that. Women (and kids and even men!) can come in and help themselves to something fun or creative. That’s doing what I can with what I have.
Take a closer look at your big dream or your vision. What is ONE STEP you can do today to move closer toward it? Go for it!
Let me know how it goes!