It is impossible to be involved with people and not be busy. So, how do you figure out how busy you should be as couple? It begins with finding your pace as individuals. In Bill's newest book, 10 Best Decisions a Man Can Make, he shares an easy to use way to identify and evaluate your pace.
Everyone has a pace at which he/she functions best. Bicycles have gears on them so you can find the right pace regardless of the terrain you are riding on. To help with the discussion, I(Bill) have come up with five categories that describe the possibilities for the speed at which each of us can live: The Muscle Car, The Sports Car, The Semi, The Mail Truck and The Tractor.
The Muscle Car
Muscle cars have big engines and are designed to go in a straight line with an abundance of pull and dramatic speed. This is the person who:
- Likes to go fast and stay focused forward
- Charges hard toward goals
- Makes quick decisions, pursues big opportunities
- Schedules activities that demand intensity and require his best effort
- Easily grows restless
- Can often be heard to say, "Let's go!"
Biblical Example: Paul
The Sports Car
Some of you move more like sports cars. These vehicles are fun, agile and quick. They prefer roads that have lots of turns and quick transitions. This is the person who:
- Lives for the surprise around the next corner of life
- Is most interested in new opportunities, new experiences and new discoveries
- Gets bored when there are no spontaneous enhancements
- Unlike the muscle car, does not just want to go fast in just one direction.
- Loves variety and epiphanies
Biblical Example: Philip
Some people operate in life more like a semi truck. This is the person who:
- Starts and stops slow
- Plans out and takes time to navigate course corrections
- Once he gets moving, can travel long distances at consistent speeds without a lot of variation
- Maintains a steady and even pace
- Don't move as fast as muscle cars and sports cars but can carry large amounts of responsibility
- Faithfully plods along until the work is done
- Are not spectacular or nimble but keep the rest of us going
- Form the backbone of our communities, our organizations and our churches.
Biblical Example: Martha
The Mail Truck
This is the person who has a sign on his back, "Makes Frequent Stops." This is the person who:
- Is intensely interested in individuals
- Finds life is consistently interrupted by conversations and projects to help people
- Makes individuals feel important by being engaging and encouraging
- Starts with energy and then stops to help
- Eventually gets back on task but justifies the delay because others were helped
Biblical Example: Barnabas, Mary
Tractors are incredibly useful but they move slowly. This is the person who:
- Fails to accomplish tasks when driven too fast
- Is easy to follow and keep track of
- Doesn't make sharp turns
- Patiently waits for the strategic time
- Tends to have one speed and they work at that speed all day.
- Is often taken for granted but does some of the most important work on earth.
Biblical Example: Ruth
Which of the five vehicles best represents the pace at which you like to live? Share your response with your spouse and then listen to their answers.
You might have to compromise as a couple and go at your pace for midweek and your mate's on the weekend—or certain times of the year (I am thinking of those married to athletic coaches or CPA's). The vital task is to decide together how to create a pace you and your and family function well at.
Pam and Bill Farrel are international speakers and authors of over 30 books including best selling Men Are Like Waffles, Woman Are Like Spaghetti. There newest book is 10 Best Decisions a Man Can Make. For free relationship resources: www.pamandbill.org