When Doing Well Means Paring Down   1 comment

This morning, it rolled over me like one of those steam rollers that Wiley Coyote could never avoid. 

All the stuff I am responsible for. 

We – i.e. women – are notorious for taking on too much. Whether that’s because we find it hard to say no, because we like to be in control, because we genuinely enjoy doing a lot of things, we often find ourselves steamrolled by all the things we have to do – jobs, children, aging parents and grandparents, volunteer activities, hobbies, friends, church – the list just goes on and on.

But the truth is that we can’t do it all and do all of it well.  Sometimes we have to look for things that can go, and we have to also let go of the guilt when we choose to let things fall aside. I don’t do that well. I don’t like to “quit” things.  It makes me feel like a failure on some level.

Reality, however, tells me that doing too much just makes me manage everything on a mediocre level.  I never excel at anything, even my own writing.  (Thus, the lack of a blog post on my writing blog so far today.)

So today.  I started paring down.  I ended the writing group that wasn’t very productive and seemed to be simply a burden for almost everyone involved.  I asked a friend about suspending the weekly article we write.  I almost even decided to stop this blog.

But I stopped myself there because this blog is important to me. It gives me a place to voice things I don’t have another place to say, and I so appreciate hearing all the things you have to focus on. So here I am, a day later than I had hoped, but still blogging about what it is to be a woman. That, that I can do well.

So what do you folks do when the steam roller of responsibility bears down? How do you manage? Do you feel guilty about cutting things out? Do you find it hard to say no? Have you found a way to make that easier? 



One response to “When Doing Well Means Paring Down

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  1. I too feel that I need to be all things to all people. It’s a gargantuan burden to please everyone while never pleasing yourself; never having a moment of peace! And yes, I feel guilty when I say, “no”. I’m made to feel guilty! It’s as if I have no identity apart from employee/wife/daughter/sister/step mother. I have vowed to end this cycle of self-abuse over and over. It’s never worked.

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