Simply Sather

DALLYING IN DECEMBER

I’m taking a break from blogging in December. And it’s a good thing. Really.

I went from posting a few times a week to almost everyday in November and it’s just not the right rhythm for me (and too much for you).

Additionally, December promises quality time with friends, a service trip to Orlando and of course Christmas. There are also plans for outpatient surgery and a recovery that I must take seriously. All of this has made me realize that I need to pull back to get prepared.

Before surgery though, I’ll be spending December hosting a free support network for fellow goal planners using the 2019 Powersheets, baking as much as I can and dreaming and praying with Mister about our lives and impact in the coming year.

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There will be reading, watching The Great British Baking Show, resting and a little bit of adventuring, but mostly, my hiatus from the blog will be about trying some new things, loving others and making margin to hear clearly what’s next.

So while I won’t be posting in this space next month, I will be writing and living and playing (sharing mostly on Instagram stories + live) readying myself to come back to this space in 2019 with intention and clarity. Thank you for being with me this past year.

Have a very merry, blessed month!

Simply Sather

GETTING TO KNOW YOU

One of the many reasons I believe we get ourselves overworked and overwhelmed is because (1) we don’t know the One who created us and (2) we don’t know the one He created us to be.

THE ONE WHO CREATED YOU

Learning God will take your lifetime. And the sooner you make room in your heart to learn about who He is, the longer you have to be in awe of Him and love Him more deeply.

And one of the things you’ll learn about God is that He is the Master Creator! No one can out create what He has done in making heaven and earth. Don’t you know lovely? You are His masterpiece.

It’s fascinating really! How intricately you are made. How you are woven together without mistake. He didn’t miss a thing. Do you know this? Do you understand it? Do you believe it?

One of the ways I learn most about who I am is through reading my Bible, prayer and journaling. There’s so much in me. And with one of my top 5 strengths being “learner”, I’m constantly taking in new information. Knowing that this is true of me has helped me release how I’m not built – and comparing myself to others – in favor of learning more deeply who I am and how I’m made.

I’ve mentioned in the last few posts that I’ll be taking a hiatus from the blog in December. It is my hope to do a lot of reflection over the past year and dreaming, planning and visioning for the coming one. A part of that for me will be delving back into “knowing myself” a bit more intently. Here are 5 resources that I’ll be digging into. I wanted to share them with you!

THE ONE HE CREATED YOU TO BE

These are not designed to be the “end-all, be-all” in discovering more about your personality, quirks and make-up. I’m not a scientist and don’t fully understand why/how these things work, but I will say the results have been more accurate for me than not – not binding me into something I hope to be, but helping me to wrap myself in more grace to walk authentically in my unique build.

Click each of the titles for links to the various assessments.

STRENGTHS FINDER

This one costs money, but I think it’s worth it.

So if you’re on a budget and are curious about this assessment for yourself, you might consider being bold and asking management or HR if they’d purchase a kit for multiple people to use; it will be beneficial to everyone.

I’ve taken it twice, though I learned afterwards that there really is no need to take it more than once. It takes about an hour to answer the 177 questions. Once you complete the assessment, they send you your results with resources to help you “aim your talents at anything that comes your way”.

My top five strengths are:

Learner, Intellection, Belief, Input + Responsibility (I believe, in that order)

No longer do I feel badly that the other seemingly “shiny” strengths are not in my top five (grass is greener ain’t it?!?) but I’ve become better about activating my strengths and partnering with those are strong in my areas of growth.

THE FIVE LOVE LANGUAGES

This assessment is free.

A unique feature about this one is that you can take the assessment for yourself or for your child. (Not for your spouse though, they have to speak for themselves.) It then asks if you’re in a relationship or single – which I think is interesting and important.

It took less than 6 minutes to complete the assessment – I took it again since I got married in February – and the results popped up immediately. They were also emailed to the account I entered in inquiry form.

And…

My results are exactly the same!

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I think this one is particularly important because we tend to love our people the way we like to be loved rather than how they feel loved – hello conflict! Speaking of which, I owe Mister a “cheat sheet” with five ways he can win in my top three love languages on a regular basis; he’s already done it for me with his top three: Physical Touch, Words of Affirmation and Quality Time.

THE MEYERS-BRIGGS 

Here’s another freebie y’all! And this one here is the one I’ve gotten the most mileage out of. It’s the personality assessment that helped me embrace (and dare I say, flaunt) my introversion.

It takes less than 12 minutes. And because it’s free, I took it again.

You get your results immediately and are invited to share your email address if you’d like them sent to you – this time I opted in for the newsletter about the mediator personality (my latest personality type).

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I laughed aloud when reading the first sentence realizing this can only be true as a result of being with Mister for the past 19 months. (He really is the most consistently, genuinely positive person I’ve ever met.)

With so many changes in 2018, it makes sense to me that my reflected personality would shift a bit. I’m walking in more of who I am, the environments that allow me to thrive and relationships that encourage authenticity and vulnerability.

This is another reason I appreciate this assessment. It helps me to remember to be flexible and graceful with myself. I’m growing and developing and that’s a good thing.

One thing to note! My “I” has not gone anywhere – I’m truly an introvert y’all.

A quirky thing I like about this one? When they share “other personality types” you may know, they actually include characters from movies and books and I say yes to that!

THE ENNEAGRAM

This one is not free. It costs $12 per code and is single use.

I got the book – The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery –  a few years ago and read as a test-reader, answered the questions in the different chapters and suspect that my Enneagram Number is a FOUR. I’m a ROMANTIC y’all.

And my head’s still whirling from this assessment. I even tried to finagle myself into another type, but after reading the chapter completely, there is no room to argue, only room to perform. My other fours will get this joke.

To learn more, I’ve added the podcast to my library line-up for 2019.

THE VIA INSTITUTE

Another freebie!

I got this one from a friend who is working on her PhD in Education. As a part of her own work, she had to take the survey and discuss the results with a few folks outside of the program.

The survey took less than 5 minutes to complete and the results immediately popped up on my screen and were sent to my email address.

Your results include all 24 character traits but with your top five, well, at the top! Each trait is a part of 6 “Core Virtues”.

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My top 5 in this survey are: Love of Learning, Creativity, Perspective, Love + Judgment. All but Love are a part of the “Wisdom” virtue category which I find to be fascinating. (Love was the only one under “Humanity”.)

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Have fun, take your time and share some of your results.

 

 

Simply Sather

LOVING PEOPLE BEYOND THE HALLMARK CHANNEL

I’ve watched approximately three Hallmark + two Netflix Christmas movies and think I may already have gotten my fill.

It’s funny too, because every year, I think I’m going to respond differently – be more enamored, “get” the nostalgia they’re sharing or even write my own someday. But then, I realize the likelihood of that is low – partly because I have no experience in filmmaking, writing, etc. and also because I spend a lot of time talking at the screen about how implausible it all is.

Or maybe how implausible I think it is because it’s not how my life (or most of my friends’ lives) seem to work.

Or to be even more transparent, I struggle with how few characters in these movies on The Hallmark Channel + Netflix have people of diversity playing in the main four or five characters as if upper-middle class Asian (fill in a brown skinned person) women don’t have struggles that can’t be worked out with a Hallmark/Netflix script. I just know I can’t be the only one that notices this. And Hallmark, I see you – you’ve added four movies to your line up this season, but I just know you can stretch your audience even more. #Ibelieve

But the part though that resonates most with me is the conflict or miscommunication part of the movie. You know, like when the girl has hired a handsome stranger to come home with her for the holidays because she just can’t bear to face her family alone for another round of “why are you single” jeopardy and then her family finds out, but they are actually now really in love.

Or the one where there is a baker’s competition in a made-up country and the “bad guy” is the person who won the competition last year and she tries to sabotage her competition but loses anyway and no one says anything or doesn’t investigate her shadiness.

Or when a rich woman is sent on a letter delivery mission to a small town with a very, very straight forward name (ahem – “Snow Falls”) with only $100 cash and ends up having almost no real challenges. She never misses a meal and is able to stay in a pretty nice place in exchange for (poorly) cleaning a few rooms a day. She’s engaged to someone else, but spending an awful lot of time with the seemingly only single man her age in said town.

I know these types of mishaps aren’t regulated to Hallmark or romantic, mushy films. They’re in every movie, television show and really in every single person’s lives. And what fascinates me most is how we handle these conflicts, miscommunications and choices in relationships.

Because I’ve found myself trapped in the sin of people pleasing for many years, I have tended to handle conflict and miscommunication in cowardly, insecure ways. I have chosen to elevate people improperly – especially when they have a role/position of authority – to the place where their own sin, shortcomings, wounds + mistakes, have clouded the voice of the Holy Spirit inside of me.

And let me tell you, I don’t get a smiley wrap-up in 98 minutes.

It’s been more like one million 98 minutes of learning how to remove my expectations, desire for security and control, to be more free to worship one and love the rest.

What I think these movies get right is the amount of grace that is extended when the communication mishaps and poor choices are revealed. And though I still struggle at times with putting people on pedestals (basically idolizing them) I’ve grown – thank you Jesus!

And this message, this past weekend, showed me just how much more I need to cling to grace and put people (and myself) in the right place in my heart + soul; it will put them in the right place in my life. If you struggle or get caught up in this at all, or love someone that does, please take some time to listen to what this woman has to say about the “American God” of People.

This message spoke to me in my soul y’all.

It – built upon some other teachings, readings and discussions earlier this year – has helped convict me about how I’m showing up in relationships with people. I don’t have it all figured out, but this message will be replayed many times this holiday season to help me move forward in relationships with people in a more godly, authentic, humble, grace-filled way.

Which may be helped along by minimizing the amount of syrupy sweet stories I consume as entertainment. Instead, I’ll be taking time in December to listen and hear from God about how I’ve gotten weird and where I’ve allowed boundaries to lapse in favor of pleasing and idolizing a person rather than serving and worshiping my God. And humbling myself so that He can use me to do what He’s built me for and to receive from the gift of relationships.