“We have become a culture that has rewarded dabbling…”
Tony Robbins has picked it. We really do reward dabbling, in others and in ourselves. Somehow, we’ve come to the conclusion that getting a bazillion things done in a day is actually good and healthy. We’ve decided that being able to do everything is somehow an asset (to ourselves and the world). But it’s really not.
A few weeks ago, I wrote about dabbling as a business owner, but this week I wanted to talk about it from a mother’s perspective.
Whether we intend to or not, as mothers we tend to “dabble”.
We tell ourselves that “this” is important and “this” is important… and so is “this”. And so we try to do all of it and end up wondering why we always feel like we’re barely surviving.
Have you praised dabbling in others? Perhaps you’ve seen someone who manages to hold her dozens of balls in the air and commented that she just “has it all together” or that you don’t know how she “does it all”.
Maybe she does and maybe she doesn’t – but I can tell you there are no medals for faking it.
We either forget to outsource or we get too busy to or we can’t afford it or we tell ourselves that it won’t work and so we try to do everything ourselves. Or we simply neglect to remind ourselves that we DON’T have to do it all.
Let me repeat that.
WE – that is: you and I – DON’T HAVE TO DO IT ALL.
Some stuff – in fact, most stuff – can just not be done. And of the remainder that we do have to do, much of it isn’t urgent. It can be done some time later on.
We don’t have to respond to every text message as soon as it hits our phone.
We don’t have to go to every playdate or every fair or every sale.
We don’t have to upgrade our decor when the season changes.
We don’t have to fill up all the white space in our calendar.
We don’t have to say yes and yes and yes again.
Every facet of our lives comes with something that needs to be mastered.
When it comes to motherhood, there might even be a few things we should be mastering, but this will be different for every mother.
What do you want to master for and with your children this week, month, year?
And when I say “mastery”, I don’t mean “perfection”. I mean constant-work-in-progress. I mean that it’s your chosen most important task, but it’s never going to be perfect. It’s just the thing you work hardest on. The rest can be left.
If dabbling in a thousand little ideals has got you feeling worn out, overcommitted and totally fried, I invite you to choose something (or a few somethings) to master.
Because worn out, overcommitted and fried is no fun to be around and serves no one… least of all you.