Too many irons in the fire…that’s what Part 6 is about.

I was on “vacation” for the last ten days; meaning I was away from that four letter word that occupies 60 plus hours of my week and countless hours of my thoughts and adds layers of tension to the muscles in my shoulders and neck. I stayed local – didn’t travel anywhere too far so I guess it was a bit of a stay-cation. And I had every intention of completely unplugging – not checking email, not worrying about spreadsheets, my only mission was to relax and decompress. Unfortunately, I was unsuccessful. However not for a lack of effort, but because it simply was not possible. And yesterday as I thought about why I wasn’t able to completely unplug I realized it’s because I have too many irons in the fire. And perhaps my inability to “unplug” serves as a signal that something has to give…

My “vacation” time was quickly filled with appointments and errands and obligations and commitments. Followed by catching up on things that fall to the wayside throughout the days and weeks and months. I stayed up too late. I woke up too early. I didn’t read one book. I didn’t watch one movie. I did check email a few times. I did worry about spreadsheets a little. I did not relax enough. I did not decompress fully. But it’s okay because what did happen is this…

I realized that I need to take a step back. I need to make a list of the “things” that demand my attention (or that I perceive are demanding my attention…). I need to prioritize. I need to make adjustments based on those priorities. And if I do this right, “things” will inevitably be crossed off of my list. And I will have to say no. I may even have to go back on something I’ve previously committed to. But once I do this – take a step back, make the list, prioritize the list, adjust the list – I will be able to move forward with my new list. A list that leaves me with more time for the things I truly want to be doing.

And here’s the best part of all…as I was settling back to the four letter work er word this morning, there came the validation of my thoughts above. I was on a conference call that had been previously scheduled – well over a month ago. And from that conference call came a recommendation for a book to read. The book, titled Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, is written by Greg McKeown. So I searched the title on Amazon as the call continued – as the person on the other end of the call began to describe what the cover looked like. And when I finally saw it – I laughed a little out loud – because it exactly depicts how I was thinking and feeling. A bunch of squiggly lines running all over the place in every which direction followed by an arrow and the squiggly lines then forming a circle. Validation.

A wise woman recognizes when she has too many irons in the fire. She takes a step back. She makes a list. She prioritizes. She adjusts. She moves forward. And apparently she will be reading a new book along the way. For what it’s worth.



Director of some corporate stuff who happens to like writing a lot and other creative outlets - like karaoke - even though she is quite certain those in the room with her while she sings wished she didn't like it so much... Runner of all distances, but prefers longer distances as God gave her the gift of endurance not speed... Mother of two boys and two dogs, who on most days, are perfectly sweet and good...mostly.

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