Back when I was in college, I began to pay greater attention to the world and how I interacted with people in it. As a type-A introvert, I prioritized lists and planning above all else, but God showed me that He is relational, and I was called to be the same. Through various circumstances and events during those years, I developed a short list of principles that help me manage my life in relation to others. (I’ve never shared this before, and my introverted self is screaming to delete this entire portion, but here goes!)
Every decision for something is also a decision against something else. Changing your plans means you are aware of the choice you are making. It also means you don’t sit around wondering what to do. This principle applies to the insignificant decisions, such as what to eat for dinner tonight, and the major life changes, such as what degree to pursue in college. Just start with something, but hold it with open hands, then change it if you need to.
Never prioritize the accomplishment of tasks over your own accessibility. It’s more important to spend time with a friend than to complete everything on your to-do list for today.
When we get nervous or uncomfortable, we tend to talk. Loudly. By spending time in different cultures or different continents, I learned that watching and listening help with understanding much more than talking ever could. This principle works in America, too.
The times when I’ve done something scary or far outside my comfort zone are the exact times that I’ve learned the most about God and/or myself and created the most significant memories! There’s a direct proportionality here that God has proven to me over and over.