So much of daily ministry duties are maintenance. We need to maintain relationships, maintain our standards of excellence, and get from one service to the next as seamlessly as possible. One of our greatest challenges is looking ahead. Its nearly impossible to think about the future when all you can see is what is in front of you. But I would argue that you cannot perform well in the moment if you don’t know where you’re headed. You cannot fly a plane without a destination in mind or start a trip without knowing where you want to go; in the same way, you cannot lead a ministry without an end goal. [bctt tweet="Its nearly impossible to think about the future when all you can see is what is in front of you." username="dukematlock"] For this reason, I have created two different ways to clear your mind and focus on the big picture, both of which are what I like to call “disconnect days.” The first disconnect days are about planning, and the second set are focused on casting vision. Without a strategic plan and a healthy vision, your ministry will lose momentum and be unable to grow. You cannot afford to skip this part of the 50-10-01 plan. Today, we’re going to talk about planning days. Your disconnect days are incredibly important; they allow you to show up well no matter what you’re facing. When you set aside time to plan, you create the space to win and succeed. Two days out of every month should be set aside to plan. You can do this in the office, just make sure you can focus and be uninterrupted. Research shows that the average office worker gets about 11 minutes between interruptions, but it takes 25 minutes for the brain to refocus on the original task after being distracted. Interruptions will limit your ability to think and plan well, so do everything in your power to limit them during your disconnect days. Don’t schedule any meetings or appointments; don’t take any non-emergent calls. Fix your eyes on what lies ahead of you. Take these two days and look at what major events and projects are coming up. Use this time to make a game plan. How are you going to accomplish your goals? How are you going to find success in these ventures? How are you going to ensure that these projects and events meet the needs and align with the vision of your church? These are important questions to answer as you start moving forward; if you don’t set aside the time to address them, they will go unanswered. Disconnect days are about clearing your mind and seeing the big picture. These days are not about accomplishing tasks; instead, they are about creating the structure needed to perform well by planning thoroughly. You cannot execute a plan that doesn’t exist. Spend two days a month creating strategies and building systems; your ministry will grow as a result. [bctt tweet="You cannot execute a plan that doesn’t exist." username="dukematlock"]  


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