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Top 7 = The super-power of sticky notes

blog top 7 Oct 31, 2022

If you’re just now dropping in, each week I look back at the week behind + preview the week ahead— so I don’t miss anything— and look and highlight at least one thing for which I’m grateful in each of the 7 key areas of life…

πŸ’™ Fitness 


🏠 Family 

πŸ›  Field (work, career)

πŸ™ Faith 

πŸ‘Š Friends 

πŸŽ‰ Fun 

Here’s the run-down from last week…



Fitness = 2 weeks in, no cream and sugar / honey 

I shared this last week, when I began… 

Two weeks ago I (finally) noticed that almost every time I drank coffee with lots of cream and honey, my stomach— within 15-20 minutes— felt like it was going to explode. I finally made a possible correlation.

“Maybe it’s the milk and honey,” I reasoned.

Human babies can’t digest their own mother’s milk after a certain age— yet we just presume we can digest the milk from a completely different mammal. Plus, all sorts of research suggests that not only is dairy NOT good for you, it causes loads of health issues which we’ve learned to just tolerate. 

Further, the dose of concentrated sugar that comes in the form of honey that early in the morning…

I decided punt the extra ingredients for a week— juste a week— and see if anything changed. Remarkably, I feel much  better. 

I used to think I really liked coffee. Not so much. I discovered that I really LOVE cream and sugar. 

So, here’s to week 2 of the experiment. 



Finance = two meetings canceled on Thursday + make the most of it

I had two back-to-back meetings scheduled for Thursday. Both of them required some drive time, as each of them were in person— at different locations. 

Both of them, due to sickness, were canceled. 

“I have three-ish hours available,” I thought. “I’ll pull some things together for the next project.”

(Hint: see the FUN category below.)

I rolled to one of my favorite workplaces— out of the house— in town, made myself comfortable, and starting typing. And sketching. And mapping ideas for a new course.

The topic? 

In short, for those of you who create content (whether you write or teach or podcast it or just have a bunch of ideas stashed in a journal or sitting as files on your computer that haven’t yet seen the light of day), I’ll show you how to: 

  •  Expand it— so it works across all those platforms 
  •  Monetize it— so you can get paid (a little or a lot) to share it with the world

It’s going to help me replace an income stream, too, which is why I tossed it here in the Top 7 / finance category. 

(I began outlining this book last week, but didn’t realize until THIS week that the timing was golden.)



Family = Easy Sunday 

Last weekend, the kids were all here, but we took it easy. Easy afternoon, easy evening…

The days of doing “nothing” with my people really are “something” to me.



Field = training, 60+ pages of processes 

This week I trained a few friends how to update their website, register people for their ministry school, and launch a book. The tech stuff we use isn’t difficult, but it DOES require a few passes as it before you “get it.”

Enter the “In case you get hit by a bus” document…

In a meeting just over a week ago, a board member said, “Are you writing all this down?”

I was in the process of doing so— and showed him.

“Good,” he added. “Let’s make sure everyone that needs to know how can follow along.”

To me, some the “tech stack” we have comes naturally. I’ve been using it for years. In fact, I was a founding member of one of the platforms and have grown my knowledge base as the platform has.

But what about the newest person?

It’s easy to assume they’ll automatically be able to do something I figured out, unhurried, over years. Moreover, it’s easy to find yourself frustrated when they can’t.

(And it’s short-sighted.)

A few weeks ago I began “doing it” the first time an edit needed to be made, taking the time to pen what I was doing so someone else could— theoretically— read the document and do the same thing. Then, last week, I actually “did it” with two onlookers— “get hit by a bus documents” in hand and spread across the table.

And then they did it…



I also received the Spanish translation of Transformation back from Belkis this past Friday. This is the project we’ve been working on with Kent Mattox (Word Alive International Outreach, Oxford). 

The book was uploaded to the printer Friday afternoon, a few adjustments were made Saturday morning, and we were “live” on Sunday. 

Here’s the English website:

And here’s the Spanish: 



Faith = the sticky-note on my mirror

Notes on the mirror are a thing at our house. We post them almost daily during some seasons, and we stick them sporadically during other times. 

Tuesday, I came in from the morning workout and saw this…

… another one from Beth.

Monday I got smacked with a surprise. Not a big deal in the grand scheme of life, but absolutely frustrating (and hurtful) in the moment. 

Beth grabbed her journal. She’s see the exact scenario play-out, same words and all, a few months ago while praying in her “tiny room.”

(The tiny room is what the kids call her prayer and study office downstairs— it was one of the kid’s bedrooms until some of them aged-up, moved to their own apartments, and left us with some extra space. The room is… well, small.)



Friends: Finished 12-step, then out Wednesday 

Wednesday evening concluded the “test-run” through the updated Freedom Recovery workbook (a 12-step curriculum / guidebook). I originally wrote it about 8 years ago— and actually used it at a rehab center where I worked. The book was the culmination of a few years of gathering notes and teaching them… then, finally, pulling them all together. 

This summer, a group asked about using the old stuff. 

“Sure,” I said. “But I’ve learned a lot in the past 7 years, so I’d like to update it if you do…”

I began updating and teaching, staying a week (or more) ahead in my edits and drafts. I completed the book around week 4, but continued teaching, taking the process all the way to week 12 / Step 12.

Joshua and Jamie helped facilitate more-than-you-can-imagine at the Word Alive campus, where recovery groups and pastoral leadership networks and so many other things naturally flow…

As a “end of 12-week run” celebration, we dined at Garfrerick’s, a quaintly awesome culinary powerhouse in Oxford.



Fun = weekend of… ease

This weekend we attended a few basketball games (kids) and just rested. I began penning a project I’ve punted for a few months while watching football at On Tap for about 6 hours between all the things.

“I’m such a nerd,” I told Beth. “I actually enjoy this…”



The Top 7 is my highlight reel for the week...

As you know by now— if you’ve been here before— I try to crank these out once a week. 

I sit down at some point each weekend, ideally on a Sunday afternoon, while planning the week ahead and doing my weekly review of the week behind, and make a few notes. 

The planner I use— which I designed for the Advance workshops I led for a season— contains journaling prompts for each day where I, generally, jot down 3 things I’m grateful for (as well as some things I could have done better, etc.). 

This has been a great exercise for me— 

⭐️ There are so many small things— that I really enjoy throughout the week— I would just forget about, if I didn’t look back and review them.

⭐️ The weekly review offers me the opportunity to take a second look at everything, evaluate what tweaks I need to make, and then move forward accordingly. to access your free download.

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