Sep 5, 2012

IWSG - Practicing my Preaching

I woke up early to write an archetypal post and after I hit publish I remembered it was IWSG day.  And this confusion of my life made a decision for me.

I got a call last night from someone wanting me to take over a job that could be lots of fun, but it is lots of work.  And it's all volunteer.  And a big part of me wanted to say yes.

But then I took a moment to think about what I want to accomplish in my life, and this job isn't there.  While I could probably make it all work - no, I could make it work - it would come at a cost to something else because of how busy I am.

And I know that cost would be writing, the thought of which makes me sick.  I had to virtually slap myself, questioning why I was thinking about taking this job when I have been lamenting lately the lack of time to write.  When I have been beating myself up over not meeting the goals I set for myself over the summer.

Too often, I get excited about the possibility of working on a project, and the people who work with this opportunity are amazing, which is probably the big part of the draw for me.  But I don't need to be in charge.  I need to write.  I need to make this a priority.  I need to stop saying yes to something when all I want to say yes to is my WIP, the publication process, the possibility of being a published author in my future.

Have you caught yourself trying to add more when you should be taking away?  Are you ever frustrated by your own actions (or near actions)? How do you keep the balance of everything you want to do in your life?

25 comments :

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Know when to say "When!"
I do better at saying no to things in the real world than things online. That's where I still sometimes overreach.
You made a wise decision.
Now go write something.

Kyra Lennon said...

Funny you should post this today as I was thinking along similar lines earlier! There is only so much a person can do, and no matter how much we want to do some things, sometimes there just aren't enough hours in the day.

Elizabeth Seckman said...

Saying yes and adding things is my specialty...and I am so tired some days!

Cassie Mae said...

i was just talking to someone about this. How I always say yes! I know I need to pull back on some things too because I'm about to go insane, lol. I bow down to your example!

Miranda Hardy said...

I'm glad you chose your writing. I think we all make sacrifices of some kind to follow our dreams. I do, at least. It will be worth it in the end.

Michelle Gregory said...

there are seasons, too. i'm in a season of transition and have had to put the writing on hold because my brain can't handle moving, unpacking, *and* writing. it's been hard to let it go. once i'm a little more settled in my new (and final) house, i hope to get back to it, but i can't force it right now.

best wishes on your WIP.

Elisabeth Kauffman said...

I'm totally there... got offered a job through my summer internship just when I had decided that I am ready to make a go of my freelance business. And I almost said yes to the job, because I CAN do it... but it's not what I WANT.

Keep nosediving toward your dreams, girl!

Donna K. Weaver said...

Yes! And I've had to back off from some things because of it. If I was able to do this writing thing full time perhaps I could do more extras, but I'm the breadwinner in my family and we kinda like to eat. And have a roof over our heads.

Lauren said...

The most important things come fires--family, God. Anything else falls down the list from there, and if it's below writing it goes away.

Makes for a very messy house.

Lauren
Lauren-ritz.blogspot.com

Brinda said...

You are preaching to the choir witth this one. I certainly have a hard time saying no to all the things I WANT to do. I only have a limited amount of time in the day/week. I understand.

Tonja said...

Writing is what I choose to do. But I often have an urge to do something else, anything else. I miss working and having people need me and want my opinion about things. I miss being paid. I miss having an excuse not to do the dishes. I don't miss the traffic.

Susan Roebuck said...

It's so easy to get excited in the moment - I always do and then bitterly regret agreeing to do something afterwards. There are only so many hours in the day and, for me, writing has to come first.

Andrew Leon said...

Have you watched the Neil Gaiman thing where he talks about only doing things that take you closer to the mountain? You should watch that, if you haven't seen it.

VikLit said...

I completely empathise, it's so hard to say no to things! But go you for prioritising your writing ;)

Cynthia said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cynthia said...

Hello from IWSG...I hear what you're saying. And good for you for sticking to your priorities. Once I realized I wanted a career as an author, I became more serious about making time to write, even if it meant less time for other things.

Dianne K. Salerni said...

I learned to say no at work -- to being on committees, especially. As a teacher, you probably know that committees eat up your time, are usually unpaid, and often no matter what you decide as a committee, somebody higher up makes their own decision based on money.

I haven't dared to give writing as my excuse for refusing committees yet. Some day I might. For now, I just blame the demands of home and family.

Donna Hosie said...

I've totally overstretched myself. Working full time while juggling three manuscripts is something no sane person should attempt!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

I've been there. I gave up coaching about five years ago so I would have more time to write. I miss it but I know it was the right thing for me.

Angela Cothran said...

This is hard for me too. I've really had to learn to say no. I'm actually still working on that :)

Catherine Noble said...

I second Andrew Leon's comment! I too am guilty of over-stretching myself. It usually leads to burnout and inability to do anything. You reach for that mountain, Tasha :)

Anthony Dutson said...

The things that tend to jump in my way are household projects. We moved into a house last year and there's no end of projects. I have to be VEWY careful about managing my time or I have none.

Proud of you for making the tough call to preserve your writing though. Too many people fail to realize how important writing time is to a writers psyche.

I found you through GUTGAA and love your blog.

Mia Celeste said...

How do I get into this Insecure Writers' Support Group?

http://otherworlddiner.blogspot.com/2012/09/deana-barnharts-gearing-up-to-get-agent.html

Krista McLaughlin said...

Yes, I'm not very good at saying "no" to people. Really I don't like going to the mall because people are pushing and I buy things I don't want because they say I should. It's sad.

We just have to learn not to stretch ourselves too thin.

Tara Tyler said...

one cant keep saying yes to others or we wont get our own stuff done! i totally agree!