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How's this for a great idea!

How’s this for a great idea!

I woke up early, just as Russ was finally crawling  into bed after finishing a project for work. His cold body curled up against mine in the wee hours of the morning. I waited for sleep to return and then finally crept from our bed, made my way downstairs, and flipped on the coffee maker.

I read my Bible, read from my current book, Daring Greatly by Brene Brown, planned my day on a lined tablet (yes, real paper) and then opened my computer,  ready to write. I launched into a post on the topic of attunement, which was the subject of a recent parent session at Dimples’ program. In an effort to be accurate, my post began to read like a boring college paper. I tried to fix it, then realized this was all taking far too long. So I saved it as a draft and went to take a shower.

So often lately I haven’t had the heart to blog, but today the sun is shining and I want to say hello, friends – I miss you and hope I will be able to write more often.

I want to share one small thing I’ve found helpful in my life lately, the 10-10-10 principle.  I read an article about managing your time and your life in Real Simple magazine awhile ago and this is the one thing that stuck with me.

The basic idea is that when you are faced with a decision that is difficult to make, ask yourself what the consequences of your choice will be in ten minutes, ten months, and ten years. How’s that for a great filter for decision making? What might feel like relief in ten minutes could cause great regret ten months later.

Suzy Welch has written a book titled 10-10-10: A Fast and Powerful Way to get Unstuck in Love, at Work, and with Your Family. I haven’t read it, but I love the concept and have applied it to my life numerous times since reading the article. I am not naturally good at making decisions – I tend to over think and consider too many details. This small thing helps me simplify (and speed up) the process.

What do you think? How good are you at making decisions?

Have a great Monday, friends.


  1. Julie (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    Great concept! I am reluctant to make decisions!

  2. Kirsten G. (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    I'm terrible at making a decision, especially when there is choice invloved. I always joke with my husband that it would nice if God sent you a postcard outlining the right choice in a decision.

  3. Sunflower Emily (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    Ooh. I'll try it.

    I'm almost done with Daring Greatly- oh my word. Amazing. Can't wait to talk about it with you!

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

      I'm rereading parts of it – especially the section on parenting! See you soon-ish!

  4. Rebecca (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    I love that. We are at a crossroads, and it helps me reframe a very difficult decision. Thank you.

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

      Then the timing of this post is perfect. I'm so glad it is helpful to you, Rebecca.

  5. Luann Yarrow Doman (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    I make rash decisions, usually to my detriment. My husband is the thinker, analyzer, and patient one. I'm thinking about this 10-10-10 concept as I eat chips and a chocolate bar. In the next ten minutes, my mouth will continue to feel like it's at a party and my tummy will feel full and satisfied. But…in 10 months or 10 years, I'll probably hate that I ate so many chips and chocolate bars! :(

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

      I hear you about the chocolate, Luann! I'm trying, once again, to make good eating choices. I do fine until life gets too hard and then I tend to slip into old patterns. You and your husband sound like you balance each other out!

  6. Margaret (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    I am sorry you have been struggling with the blog, I hope it is mostly just writing and not so much life. Either way, you are in my thoughts…I hope sun and Spring lighten the burden a bit.
    I will have to give the 10-10-10 approach a try. I usually think something over, talk it over with my husband or a friend, and then if it feels big, let it sit while I take a walk or sleep, etc. Stepping away and then coming back helps. One of the hardest things about parenting decisions is the perspective…am I too close and making something bigger? Am I ignoring something? Talking it over and taking a break help me get perspective.

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

      Margaret, I think parenting decisions are some of the very hardest ones we make – and there are so many of them. Taking a break is good advice. Today I took the kids for a hike in the sunshine and it did wonders for my heart and mind. I'm definitely ready for Spring.

  7. Paula (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    I'm great at malign decisions…and then second guessing myself for the next eon. :)

  8. helenhsm (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    Hi Lisa, how fun to find your blog. We have a lot in common. I am also a home school mom (though not an adoptive one) but I'm also a writer. I don't have a blog right now, but I have in the past. I'm working on a memoir.

    I can totally relate to snuggling with a cold husband coming to bed in the wee hours and me getting up after awhile, unable to go back to sleep. Nice to know I'm not alone in keeping opposite schedules at times. Blessings. Helen (from OTL on FB)

    • Lisa Qualls (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

      Thank you for saying hello, Helen. I'm looking forward to getting to know you more.

  9. helenhsm (Reply) on Monday 31, 2014

    Oh and I also like the idea of 10-10-10 and have been reading Brene Brown.