Ever Feel Overwhelmed by Demands on Your Time and Energy?

I talked with a missionary friend recently who confessed to me she felt guilty for saying “no” to volunteering at her child’s school after a personal phone call requesting help. The need was both a valid and worthy one, yet there lacked sufficient workers; the school was desperate.

Should she have committed to helping? Would you have?

I told her I felt she made the right decision not to volunteer and it didn’t matter if other people understood her decision or not. Before we get any further, let me give you some background: my friend, a mother of three elementary children who has been actively involved in their mission, had volunteered last year to do the same job, but had to stop halfway through the year when she was diagnosed with cancer.

Through widespread intercession and with radical treatments, she is now recovering, having been declared cancer-free a few weeks ago. But she is tired; still so very tired.

Yet she cares for her husband, her kids, and her house. She remains partly active in their missions work. And that’s where her limit, currently, is reached. They have been involved in their local church and she’s contemplating (guiltily) how she can back out of her obligations there as well, since it has become more than she can handle. Then, along came the e-mails for volunteers, followed by the personal phone-call. Guilt and pressure continued to build.

This same issue has surfaced recently in numerous conversations I’ve had with other women and I am curious if you too feel overwhelmed with demands on your time and energy?

I’m looking for feedback. I would love to hear your thoughts and/or suggestions. Or if you simply want to let off some steam in this area (*smile*), feel free to leave a comment, anonymous if you prefer.

4 thoughts on “Ever Feel Overwhelmed by Demands on Your Time and Energy?

  1. Just say NO! This slogan may have been ridiculed in the past, but when it comes to being overloaded and stretched …..Just say No! Upon saying no to helping even more with the High School Band program at my kids school, I realized I made the right decision when i felt my socks stick to the jelly on the kitchen floor. The mounds of paperwork from paying school fees to buying the soccer snack was looming in front of me. I can still hear my echo in the refrigerator when I shouted “who ate all the food?” I had just gone grocery shopping ( I think). Sometimes in life we must take a step back for it to be a step in the right direction. There will be a time for volunteering and saying yes, but also for using the “N” word – NO!
    And yes, I even found the time to wash those sticky socks!

    1. Christine – I loved the way you expressed yourself. You wanna be a guest blogger here? Just say the word and you’re on!

      Your “just say no” reminder is simply genius! At the end you said, “Sometimes in life we must take a step back for it to be a step in the right direction”. Boy is that contrary to the post-modern philosophy of life! Contrary, but correct in my opinion.

      Thanks for commenting!

  2. Hey Ilona!
    ok- my mantra for guilt and feelings of being overwhelmed is


    No one can enforce them but me. I have to know where to draw the line.

    So, no. I would not volunteer. And good for your Friend! Sometimes the BEST mom is not the most “Active” mom. Sometimes the best mom is the one who knows her limits and her priorities.


    1. Thanks Dorinda for the excellent comment. Two things you said stuck out to me: the first was the word “Boundaries”. Yes! I agree. The second was “the best mom is the one who knows her limits and priorities”.
      Doubly agreed on that one.


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