Tuesday, October 18, 2016

DO EVERYTHING BETTER

Yes, I shouted the title of this post.

After I posted about how my mom buys me books, she mailed me some books.  Amazing how that works.

The first one I received, and the first one I picked up, is Bittersweet by Shauna Niequist. I really need to meet Shauna.  Almost every word in the book feels painfully familiar.  I will probably have posts to write about this book, but for today, it's about priorities.

Shauna writes, "The grandest seduction of all is the myth that DOING EVERYTHING BETTER gets us where we want to be..."  And, oh, how I fall into that trap, on daily basis, really.  I look at my list of things to accomplish, my areas where I need to improve, my weaknesses, my challenges and failings.

The only clear solution?

DO EVERYTHING BETTER.

We have already established that I cannot find an easy solution to my feelings of overwhelming panic.

So?

I will DO EVERYTHING BETTER.

Except. No.

I can't.

I have stretched my time and talents to the max, and I have nothing better left to give.

DO LESS.

I look at my middle school students, struggling under the demanding weight of the curriculum I implemented. I am responsible when they drown under the weight of a project's details, when their presentations lack...quality.  I tell them they must bear the responsibility, but then I look at what I've designed and determine that I need to...DO EVERYTHING BETTER.

I can't.

I can't just do it all and better.

I will do less.

I will design projects with far fewer fancy trappings, with the hope that my students will learn more.

I will simplify holiday presents, with the hope that my family and friends truly believe that the thought really does count.

I will breathe more and worry less.

And, in the end, maybe it will all turn out better.

Here's hoping.




10 comments:

  1. All great goals. I'm all about striving for self improvement.

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    1. Sometimes I'd like a break from self improvement, but in the end, it's always worth it!

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  2. The "breathe more worry less" really caught my eye. Distill what matters most and keep that- do less, do the important stuff first. So much of what we do is chaff. I appreciate your realization!! A good reminder and post.

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    1. Thank you! I had a moment today when I could DO ALL THE THINGS or take a moment for myself. I'm pretty pleased with my choice...

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  3. Ahhhhh, love this. We've recently (two weeks ago) emigrated to New Zealand, and are currently living with the bare minimum... And it's WONDERFUL!! No clutter, no mess - only what matters. Freeing on every level :) .

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    1. That's exactly how I feel when we travel - so free of all the...stuff. I need to remember this and do another massive cleaning in my house! Thanks for the reminder!

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  4. A lot of successful people say something similar. You can't do everything so do less but do it better. Brian Tracy says that.
    I don't always follow that advice but I know it works. Funny how that happens but I'm still a work in progress.
    http://runwright.net

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    1. A work in progress...yes...I have a feeling that will be me FOREVER. And that's okay!

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  5. You nailed the dart. Breathe more and worry less. Sometimes, no matter how much we do, it'll always be less in someone's eyes. I guess, the level of perception always varies. I have such panic attacks too many times. But, in the end, all that matters, is whatever we are doing, how happy are we? :)

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    1. Exactly. I think it's so important to stop even caring, let alone worrying, about what other people think!

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