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Consistency Is Key, But...

There are so many speeches from experts and gurus about consistency and success. And while I believe creating healthy habits and routines is VERY important, I've found the concept "consistency is key" to be inconclusive — and a little condescending, possibly because I took it too practically. It implies that success is inevitable if you create a routine based on what you want and stick to it. But, the trouble with the phrase at face-value is that "Consistency is Key" doesn't factor in life's instability.


Consistency Is The Key To Success, But What About The Deadbolt?


Have you ever unlocked a door, tried to enter it, and realized it's deadbolted? Like, you can turn the knob, but the door won't open because, technically, it's still locked. You try strategically throwing your body into the door to open it, but unless you're the hulk, you need a second key. This is how I've experienced consistency and success so far.


Don't get me wrong; I've opened many doors with consistency. Whether building my career, working out, prioritizing quiet time or being diligent with my side hustle, I'm a pretty disciplined person and can stick to a routine. But in many of these accomplishments, my life and routine were stable enough to support my consistency. I'm happy with where that's gotten me, but I know there's more. And it seems like when I am on a consistent path toward unlocking more — I encounter the dreaded deadbolt of change.


Change is disruptive because it's often unexpected and unwarranted. It requires you to shift mentally and physically, impacting your environment, schedule, habits — and ultimately, throwing off your consistency.


January 2022 brought change that halted my routine more than any other event in my life. Here I was in a new year, back in my small hometown, newly single, around my family full-time and grieving, an emotion I'd never experienced so close before. My gym, desk, friends, Atlanta happenings or even clothes were 6-hour away from me. Being home was only supposed to be for a week or two but were now going on a month and a half now. At week three, I felt so thrown off my game and guilty about that. Eventually, I shut down because I couldn't figure out how to fit the consistency I'd established before into my new situation.


Then, God took me to Jeremiah 29. Now, everyone knows verse 11:


"For I know the plans I have for you,' declares the Lord, 'plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future."

Beautiful stuff, but the context of this scripture is more important. During this time, God commissioned the prophet Jeremiah to write a letter to the exiles to tell them their exile from the promised land (a change to their environment and lifestyle) was God's will, and they couldn't change that (no matter what other prophets were saying). In the Letter, God told the exiles that instead of fighting their new undesirable conditions, they needed to accept them — and even embrace them.


Here were God's instructions in the verses before verse 11:


4 Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: 5 Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat what they produce. 6 Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons, and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there, and do not decrease. 7 But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.

Something clicked when I read this: I had to embrace the change. I needed to stop stressing about holding onto my routine and create a new one that would allow me to increase (i.e., flourish) in my current situation. I accepted that consistency has to be adjustable to withstand the constant change of the foreseeable future. Yall, for a very structured, organized and goal-oriented person, the freedom in this revelation is unexplainable!


Consistency is A Key To Success, But IT IS NOTHING WITHOUT FLEXIBILITY.


What does that look like?

  • Shifting from creating a controlled process to trusting and making room for God's process

  • Planning ahead with arms wide open to inevitable change

  • Giving yourself the grace to change your mind and what works for you in any scenario

  • Applying creativity and innovation in the face of adversity

  • Taking refuge in the only true constants: Jesus and His perfect will for your life


So, when you experience a deadbolt-sized life change, flexibility is just as important as consistency. In fact, it may very well be the missing link for people who struggle with overall consistency.


I can't wait to share more on this topic as I learn how to use this concept for myself. Stay tuned!





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