Choose to Invest in Yourself

In Steven Covey’s book, “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective people” the 7th Habit is: Sharpen the Saw.

To sharpen the Saw means to intentionally choose to enhance yourself.  It means having a balanced system for self-renewal in four key areas of your life.  Let me start by saying, I am constantly trying to improve this discipline in my own life.

  1. Physical
  2. Social / Emotional
  3. Mental
  4. Spiritual

In ministry we must choose to be intentional when it comes to sharpening our saw or we, like many before us will walk the path of burnout.

If you want to increase your productivity and enjoy ministry more, than you must take time to invest in yourself and sharpen the saw.

Here are some examples of activities you can do in each of the categories outlined in the book.


  1. Work less hours (mainly for those working over 50 hours a week)
  2. Use your vacation time
  3. Exercise – Stay physically fit
  4. Improve your diet
  5. Get more sleep
  6. Get up earlier and go to bed earlier
  7. Play as hard as you work

Social / Emotional 

  1. Invest in relationships
  2. Spend more time with positive people, people that make you feel good
  3. Encourage someone else
  4. Smile more
  5. Challenge yourself to step out your comfort zone in conversations


  1. Identify stress relievers
  2. Learn a new skill
  3. Take a class
  4. Choose an area to grow in
  5. Read an inspiring book
  6. Set some new goals 


  1. Attend church: Not just to teach, but to learn.  Make attending services a priority.  Check out my post, “Why I stopped attending church” 
  2. Daily devotions: Check out my post about investing in your spiritual growth.  
  3. Spiritual disciplines: Prayer, meditation, fasting

What Do You Think?

I’d love to hear your tips to intentionally invest in yourself.  Scroll down and leave a comment.

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About the Author

Andrew VanDerLinden

Andrew is the Executive Pastor at Community Church in Eastern PA.

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