The Five Truly Important Facets of Life
Life – minding the many aspects of life is necessary, but certainly not easy! In the hustle and bustle of life, pausing to assess critical areas often get overlooked!
There are a variety of ways to assess an individual – personality assessments like DISC or the Enneagram; Career assessments like Career Direct, StrengthFinders, Sparektypes, HBDI/thinking preferences, 360-degree assessments, and dozens of others that zero in on a specific aspect of a person. Each one provides valuable information and perspective, yet none of them fully reflect the unique person God has created them to be on their own. We are simply too complex to be summed up by a single perspective.
As a coach, I value assessments because they allow my clients to see themselves in a new light and enable me to serve them more effectively.
Assessments highlight both the positives as well as the areas in need of growth. Yet there are some key facets of life that need to be examined on the regular in order for you to thrive personally and professionally that only you have the ability to asses.
It’s rare for me to run into someone who has plenty of spare time, so finding time to reflect, assess, and examine your life easily slips off your to do list. However, the cost of neglecting these important facets of your life is significant whether you are a leader, professional, entrepreneur, or loving and serving those around you!
What are those important facets? I appreciate how Paul highlights them here:
Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity. I Timothy 5:12 (NLT)
Before we dive into the specific facets Paul is referring to here, I want you to be aware that Paul is writing here to Timothy, a young and less experienced spiritual leader. While you may not have an official leadership role, you are still tasked with the responsibility of leading your own life. And if you are a leader this applies all the more! You are to be an example to others, and one of the primary ways you do that is by leading yourself well.
Bottom line, these important facets of life apply to all.
So, without further ado, here are the five facets fleshed out:
1. Your Words
While the tongue is a small part of the body, James warns us that our tongues have the potential to cause us all sorts of trouble! It’s like a bit in a horse’s mouth that determines the direction the horse will go or like a rudder directing a huge ship. The tongue is like a flame of fire that has the potential to set your whole life on fire! That’s some pretty powerful imagery! (James 3)
Paul goes on to point out how we praise God and we curse people with the very same tongue! Our words don’t come from out of the blue. They flow out of our hearts, out of our thinking and beliefs.
Your words are a very important facet of your life to pay attention to!
2. Your Life
At first glance, observing your life seems very general. What Paul is referring to is the way you do life: your habits and routines. Because you are a whole person, the quality of your habits and routines determine your life. That’s why they are of the utmost importance.
If you are like most people, you find maintaining healthy habits and routines in a frantic world difficult. Carving out time with God or exercising easily gets displaced by the urgent. Getting to bed on time and getting enough sleep seems to shrink in importance with a packed schedule, but your lack of sleep literally affects every other area of your life! And those are just a few of the habits/routines to be mindful of!
Developing and maintaining wise habits and routines requires discipline. For many, that is a weak muscle! The path of least resistance on the other hand requires very little effort. However, healthy habits and routines are necessary in order for you to operate the way God intended you to. And it’s an ongoing process of adjusting and growing and experimenting.
3. Your Relationships
When life is full and frantic, relationships get neglected. Yet, God created us for relationships and intended for us to live in community. In fact, it is tough to love others, really love them, if you have no time to interact with people.
Rick Warren says, “The best use of life is love. The best expression of love is time. The best time to love is now. God intentionally allows you to go through painful experiences to equip you for ministry to others.”
In order to love well, you need space in your life for others. Is your life missing the margin necessary to love well?
When life gets crazy, which relationships suffer most? Your family? Your work relationships?
Time spent with family and friends – it’s just good for your soul! And that’s a happy bonus!
4. Your Faith
What does your relationship with God look like? Do you view God as a loving and gracious Father? A faithful provider and friend? Or do you view God as capricious, unreliable, and distant?
Your view of God has an impact on your life and work. Those thoughts and beliefs about God trickle down into every nook and cranny of your life.
When your perception of God is distorted, it’s all the more necessary to spend time with Him so that you really get to know Him and understand His heart at a deeper level. He longs to connect with you, and when you do, it changes you for the better! It increases your ability to trust Him no matter what’s happening in your life.
Neglect your relationship with God and doubt, fear, and anxiety creep in. That’s why it’s so important to take a look at this facet of your life!
Time spent with God transforms, encourages, and guides you!
5. Your Purity
In today’s world, what’s right or wrong gets fuzzier and fuzzier, but Scripture is very clear on what’s right, what’s moral. Scripture is the lens to view your life through and then take steps to realign yourself when you drift.
God doesn’t expect us to be perfect. It’s comforting to note that not a one of the people listed in the hall of faith in Hebrews 11 were perfect. Like David, we need to allow God to search our hearts and allow Him to bring to light the places in our lives that are off track and then swiftly make them right.
Many years ago, God showed me the Angle Theory. You may be only a half degree off or a quarter of a degree off when it comes to your relationships and loving well. Yet as time goes on even that slight bit off course gets you further and further off course over time! That’s why it’s important to frequently assess yourself in these five facets of life!
Here’s the bonus to minding these five important facets of life: you are much better prepared for whatever comes your way! You’ve done the work up front. That doesn’t mean life will be easy, but it does mean you will be poised to handle the difficulties.
There are also some wonderful perks to actively staying on top of theses five facets of life including greater confidence and peace, less fear, better relationships, and hope. And as you become more mindful of these facets of your life you will also become more self-aware, resilient, and purposeful. That’s a win, win right there!
What has God called you to do? To be? How does He want to use your life? Whatever it is, tending the five facets will enhance your ability to do that well!
Be honest with yourself: what is your motivation behind what you are currently doing – all that you are spinning your wheels to accomplish? And even more importantly, what are you neglecting in the process of that pursuit?
How is your Fear Monster at play? Is he tempting you to try to matter, seek significance, or to prove you are enough? All that you are yearning for is found when you choose to walk in who God created you to be, when you do life His way.
By making these important facets of your life a priority you are naturally forced to live more intentionally. And that my friend, is a beautiful thing! It’s sure to make you better at whatever you do!
Which of the five facets of your life have you been neglecting?