by Lisa Jordan, @lisajordan
The summer after I graduated high school, I worked as a waitress at a local family 24-hour restaurant.
During a particularly busy rush after the bars closed at 2 a.m., I maneuvered through a crowded dining room, carrying a large oval tray above my head loaded with hot food. I approached the customers’ table and started serving their meals.
A rowdy gentleman, who had consumed large quantities of alcohol, pushed his chair out, slamming it into my back. My knees buckled, but I struggled to keep from face planting in someone’s mashed potatoes while holding onto the heavy tray with the rest of the food.
Unfortunately, the balance had shifted on the tray. To my horror, a side order of beef gravy slid and spilled down the back of the gentleman’s leather coat hanging on his chair.
Even though he was at fault, I apologized profusely, but his inebriated state created chaos and added to my humiliation in the dining room. He demanded to speak with my manager and insisted I be fired on the spot.
Fortunately, several customers came to my defense. The manager calmed everyone down, comped the man’s meal, offered to pay for his jacket to be cleaned, then asked him to leave when he grew more irate because I wasn’t being fired.
Life has a way of creating a chain reaction. When we carry many responsibilities, we struggle to maintain balance, especially if we neglect to ask for help. Trying to do everything becomes exhausting. Not only that, but resentment can build up when we see others enjoying themselves while we’re slaving away in the kitchen, folding laundry or putting the finishing touches on the costume that’s due tomorrow…and you learned about it yesterday.
Yes, some of us may be control freaks—we like knowing things are done the way we want and we don’t have to wait on others. But you know what? We can’t do it all. Besides we risk depriving others the blessing of helping.
So before you drop your tray of responsibilities, take the first step and ask for help.
Consider the ages and abilities of your family members. Think about everything on your daily to-do list.
- Teach your kids how to do their own laundry. Sure they may grumble and their whites may end up pink or blue, but you’re teaching them responsibility and offering them self-help skills.
- Ask your teenagers to take over cooking one night a week. They may find they enjoy it. When my boys were in high school, they had to cook one night a week. My oldest son enjoyed it so much he went to culinary school after high school.
- Make a grocery list and ask Hubby to stop to pick up a few things after work.
- If you have teens that drive, ask them to act as the ballet or soccer chauffer. Or consider exchanging carpool duties with another parent so you’re not running every night. Swapping helps out both of you.
- Teach your younger children how to pick up the living room and put things where they belong. Make a game of it by setting a kitchen timer for 15 minutes and see if they can beat the timer.
By delegating simple tasks, you’re teaching your children how to be independent. Plus they will see how they’re blessing you by giving you more time to pursue your writing. That shows them the value of working hard to achieve your dream.
Sarah Sullivan will do whatever it takes to make her summer youth program permanent. But when she’s tasked to teach the teens basic kitchen skills, her hope goes up in flames. Not knowing the first thing about cooking, Sarah needs help. Smelling the delicious aromas coming from her neighbor’s apartment one night, she thinks she’s found her answer. Alec Seaver might know his way around pots and pans, but the lone-wolf widower doesn’t want anything to do with the free-spirited beauty next door. But after he becomes Sarah’s reluctant partner, Alec realizes that she might just be the key ingredient missing from his life.
Heart, home, and faith have always been important to Lisa Jordan, so writing stories with those elements come naturally. Represented by Rachelle Gardner, Lisa is an award-winning author for Love Inspired, writing contemporary Christian romances that promise hope and happily ever after. She is the Operations Manager for Novel.Academy, powered by My Book Therapy. Happily married to her own real-life hero for almost thirty years, Lisa and her husband have two grown sons. When she isn’t writing, Lisa enjoys family time, kayaking, good books, and playing in her craft room with friends. Visit her at lisajordanbooks.com.