How many times have you told yourself, you’re not going to worry about this, or try so hard at that? Me too. I use to say, I can’t do it all, and then I would still attempt to do it all. That all changed this past spring, when I attended a conference. After coming back from that conference I wrote a blog post about what I was choosing NOT to be good at. I heard back from many of you who said it was empowering to list exactly what you were intentionally not going to be good at.
So…I decided to do it again this season. I find that if I list what I am not going to be good at it frees me from those expectations. Only here’s the thing: I sometimes backslide. Anyone else out there do that too? Posting it here will not only keep me accountable but perhaps help you stay accountable too.
I am choosing not to be good at…
Criticizing myself and self doubt– that’s right only positive, reaffirming, uplifting thoughts. I can do it!
All.the.things– you know what I mean. PTA meetings, fundraisers, buying the shirt that matches the team, the field trip. The online party, the birthday party, the parent’s meeting after practice. the manicure, the pedicure the massage, the YOLO, the appointment, the book recommendation. the tv show that everyone’s talking about. The restaurant everyone is talking about. The bible study, and the prayer group, and the moms meeting. The newest electronics. Basically anything that looks like what the Jones’ are doing. I refuse to keep up with them. I can’t do it all. Neither can you. I’m choosing a few and saying no to all.the.things.
Playdates– I have a confession. I hate playdates. I do. I have enough going on in my life than to arrange my children’s social lives. They can play all day at school or at the fifty million birthday parties we get invited to each weekend. The last thing I need while cooking dinner and attempting to publish this post is another kiddo asking me for a snack. Does that make me a mean mom? Probably, but remember, I’m not criticizing myself, see above.
Paperwork– you guys I have been saying since last April that I was going to create a system to deal with all the paper work in my house. I have three different file folders, two drawers, a stack of paper on the shredder and a few more piles shoved in various containers around the desk. But I am waving the white flag on this one for now. Every time I look over there I feel guilt and shame. So I’m done. I choose not to be good at paperwork. (Probably ever.)
Preventing my kids from making mistakes– it’s been a big year (already) for life lessons in our house. I decided that even though I don’t want to be, I can be a helicopter mom sometimes. I hover around, hooting and hollering, in order to keep my girls from making mistakes. Whether it’s homework, or chores, or friendship. I love them, and I want them to succeed. I don’t want them to get hurt but in my preventing them from making mistakes I keep them from learning important life lessons. And some of those life lessons will be hard and hurt. I’m learning that more than the actual mistake it is how we handle the moments after the mistake that matter. So, I’m saying no to keeping them from learning big lessons.
Date-nights out– I love date nights out. I do. I am a huge advocate of date-nights but in this season with my hubby traveling a lot, and busy evenings full of practices, by the time he finally makes it home the last thing either of us want to do is go out. Right now date nights look a lot like a day-date, or even breakfast together, or chatting after the girls are asleep. It looks like discussing a book, cooking dinner together, or browsing real estate for someday. Date night is low key in this season. And I’m okay with that.
Just in case you’re wondering what I’m choosing to be good at, here are a few:
Self-care: in this season it looks like: half-marathon training, designated writing days, rising early for a bit of quiet time before my girls wake up, and good books.
A new project I’m super passionate about.
Intentional time with my family: since limiting my social media time (how mindlessly that happens), I have been much more intentional with how I spend the girls bedtime routine, homework time, and dinner time together.
Listening to other’s stories: I have been amazed at how every person has a story to tell, if we are simply willing to listen. Not just a funny, entertaining story but one that is marked by hardship and strife and pain. And as I’ve been listening, I see how God works together so many impossible situations for his glory and good. Right now I’m choosing to be good at really listening.
Choosing what not to be good at is so freeing. I would love for you to share some of the things you are choosing not to be good at in this season. Let’s band together and intentionally say no to some things. Who’s with me? Comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org