Book In Review

Good Morning!  As I promised in my last post I wanted to share on a book I’ve been reading.  “Present Over Perfect” by Shauna Niequist.  I first heard of the book on a list of must reads via Pinterest.  The title alone seemed like it would be completely appropriate for me to read at the current place in life.  I will say this isn’t a book I sat and read from front to back in a few days as I have with so many books.  This is a book I have read while reading one or two of those books.  I have found this to be a book I’ve dog-eared pages and found specific chapters necessary for Joe to even read.  So let’s start there…

Joe is not a reader but many times as a business owner we need to recognize things. Specifically for my husband when it is the appropriate time to “put chairs up” as Shauna references in this book during a time when in this specific chapter the church pastors church is growing at a rapid speed and as to saying “no” I will stay small and only provide so many chairs the pastor continues to want to give and provide.  At some point in business we have realized that you can’t give and provide to everyone, all the time.  That at some point your life and your well being and the best you and not only your family but your clients is providing less.  Joe is realizing that it’s time to put chairs up.  Nourishing those relationships with clients we have and being present in our kids lives to not miss the “big” things.  S’s horseback riding lessons, and K’s stunts on his power wheels four wheeler.  I have a few other chapters that I feel strongly about having Joe read as well.  Looking forward to having him read and digest as I’m digesting so many of the chapters.

A friend recently said she was curious what my feeling would be on this book.  As she had a hard time getting past the feeling that all Shauna talked about was “how busy” her life was.  It’s funny as when she made this comment I was half way through the book and hadn’t felt that.  I found myself starting to analyze chapters ahead but then stopped and thought.  I’m not reading this book for that purpose.  I am reading this book to put it active in how things she talks about apply to me.  I too am a mom of two small children and married to a great man.  I too run a hectic life; no not one that has me traveling to book signings or running small group for a church but I do stack my day with more things than I should.  Which leads to things happening as did yesterday…K asked for milk with breakfast and I went to the fridge to find no milk?  Odd we just bought a gallon!?  I went to get a cup and say he will have to have orange juice as we are out.  Guess what was staring at me in the cupboard of cups?!  Yes, the gallon of milk half full that I put there after I gave the kids milk the night before for dinner.  This is not the first time I’ve done this and likely won’t be the last.  Last week it was the pretzels for S’s lunch that I bagged up and then never put in her lunch bag.  Before that it was my coffee cup I found in the laundry shoot.  To me these instances didn’t seem odd or not normal; ok maybe not normal.  But I pushed it off as a busy mom multi tasking.  After I read the chapter on “the word that changed everything” and this milk incident happened yesterday it clicked.  It’s time to start saying “no” and feeling ok about it.  I can’t do everything even though I want to.  Saying “no” is challenging for me as I think it is for many.  We want to help everyone even if it comes at the expense of over extending ourselves in a healthy way.  I think books as this one can be taken many ways.  I absolutely can see how one would read into it and feel like “ok we get it your busier than me.”  But I also think the book is meant to be taken for what it is and using the tools she suggests into your life however that may be.  There are chapters in the book that don’t apply to me but I’m sure they apply to someone.  We aren’t a religious family but the points she touches on in regard to religion don’t offend or affect me in a way that leaves me not interested in reading the book further.  There is enough religion in the book that made me stop and think about what she was sharing. Which I think is a good thing!

My overall opinion of the book is it’s a great read for everyone.  I think a few people that it would specifically be great for are (1) mom’s.   Weather you are pulled in many directions which so many moms/parents are or you like me think the crazy is norm.  This book can put some things in perspective and are good things to think about and consider.  I also think it’s a great book for (2) business owners/higher ups/those in intense roles for a company to read.  It’s a good reminder that life isn’t about what’s in the bank or what high you get from a clients positive words.  It’s about living the life that was meant for you and not getting caught up in these highs that are minuscule in the grand scheme of things.  There is so much out there to be appreciated and nurtured but we can loose focus of these things if we allow life to let it.

I’m looking forward to starting one of Shauna’s other books “Bread & Wine” excited to try some of the recipes she incorporates into this book as well!  Speaking of food next time we chat I will share a few new recipes I’ve tried out!  Until then be well!  Cheers🍻

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