Time Management Evaluation Checkpoints
Adapted from Elyse Fitzpatrick’s book, Love to Eat, Hate to Eat and Amy Baker’s class Common Counseling Issues II (Faith Bible Seminary, Lafayette, IN)
Idolatry: Does this activity demonstrate a heart that values something more than my Savior and Lord?
Some possible idols could include:
- 1. Control - I can do whatever I want and no one can keep me from it.
- 2. Pleasure – I’m going to do this because I want the enjoyment it gives even if it keeps me from fulfilling God-given responsibilities to myself or others. For example:
- Even though I’ve worked too hard/too long, I’m going to keep going because it makes me feel good.
- Even though I have things that need to be done, “I deserve a break today.”
- I’m going to reward myself with this activity even if it means sacrificing biblical priorities or leads to further sin (see “Inroads” and “Priorities”).
- 3. Superiority. I want to be better than other people. For example:
- I feel superior when I do more or work longer than everyone else around me.
- 4. Comfort. I want to feel better. For example:
- I feel sad, guilty, afraid and/or want to escape so I am looking to “me” time for comfort rather than seeking comfort from God.
- I want the best part of the day for myself.
- I want the most possible time for myself.
- I want to spend time any way I choose even if it means I miss opportunities to serve/love others.
- I want as much freedom as people or friends I know with fewer responsibilities.
- Will this activity create a desire to overindulge, even though it isn’t sinful in and of itself? For example
- If I sit down to watch an episode or check e-mail, the news, or Facebook, will it create a desire to spend more time/money than I should?
- Will it lead me to other sinful activities—overeating, overspending, watching inappropriate images/videos, or wasting resources?
- Is there a place I frequent where I spend more money than is prudent, fall into covetousness, or take on an arrogant, self-exalting attitude?
- If I “take a break,” will I then turn on the computer or T.V. and get lost in time when I should be fulfilling other responsibilities?
- If I set high expectations for getting things done, will I give in to impatience, disrespect for and unkindness toward others? Will it build others up or puff me up?
- Have I resented having to do this chore when I wanted to do something else?
- Have I resented not getting things done that were on my “to do” list because of interruptions, unexpected people or events?
- Have I thought of time as an enemy rather than thinking of it as a good gift from God that he wants me to use and enjoy to its fullest?
- With the time I have each day, do I properly care for my body, use spiritual gifts, natural abilities and financial resources in a way that honors God or pleases me?
- Who/What is my focus? Myself or others?
Emotions: Does the desire to spend time on this activity flow out of a heart of anger, fear, hurt, frustration or depression?
Priorities: Am I giving time, money, or energy to this in a way that prevents me from carrying out other God-given responsibilities or priorities? For example,
- Am I neglecting biblical priorities in order to shop, pamper myself, drink coffee with friends, attend meetings, watch sporting events or play ball? (Or am I expecting someone else to neglect biblical priorities in order to spend time with me?)