What Are You Doing With Your 4th Quarter?

My first daughter just started high school.

As all the nervous parents gathered for our High School 101 session, the principal started his talk and said,

“Welcome to the 4th quarter!”

Then he went on about how important this 4th quarter with our student is for their development. He went on to tell us how we are now shifting from managers to consultants and how we are learning new ways to parent. It was an incredible talk and yes, everyone was teary-eyed.

As a USC alum who still owns season tickets, this football analogy did not fall lightly on me. USC tends to pull through IN the 4th quarter.

So my brain instantly went into “Have I done enough?” panic mode.

“Have I taught her enough? Have I prepared her enough? Have I done enough?
Have I….Enough? Enough? Enough?”

And when that awful 60 seconds was over… I exhaled and relaxed and rerouted my thinking to the following:

There may be things she finds herself unprepared for…and that’s part of her journey.
There may be things she is over-prepared for… and that’s part of her journey.
There will be things that make her feel uncomfortable…. and that’s part of her journey.
There will be things that make her feel proud… and that’s part of her journey.
The highs will balance the lows, and if we can both see through the lens of the highs when we’re in the lows and vice-versa, we will find ourselves in a place of security and balance throughout this 4th quarter. 

It's not my job to take her out of the game.  She's ready to play!

If you have a new high school student, you may be feeling the same way, but this 4th quarter concept is not limited to high school. 

Where’s your 4th quarter showing up in your life? And how can you change your thinking around it? 
Where are you panicked about a result?
Where are you worrying?
What in your life is keeping you up at night?
Where can you shift your thinking to believe in the journey that is set for you?
Where can you trust that blessings are on their way? 
We bring in more of what we focus on. Where’s your focus right now?  Is there something that is coming to an end in your life that has you panicked? A job? A friendship? A relationship? A season of your life?

Are you worrying and sitting on the sidelines, or are you playing the game? If you want this game to be over, the fastest way out, really, is to stay in the game. Train yourself to give it all you've got, knowing it will unfold as it is supposed to unfold, with blessings abound, even those blessings that are sometimes disguised as challenges. Visualize each play of your game being successful, whatever those plays may be for you. Trust your 4th quarter is falling into place. Use the lens you need to use to get you through to the other side of the play you're working on now. 

You may just find your game-winning touchdown waiting for you at the end of your 4th quarter. Stay in the game! Give it all you got! And know every play happens for a reason. 

Happy Fall!

Much love,

Erin Garay