There are two things at which I consistently fail. Well. Ha. There are probably countless things at which I consistently fail, but we don't have all day. So let's stick with two.
Thing #1: I consistently fail at extracting myself from conversations that have run their course. It happens with grocery store checkers. It happens with people in line at the post office. I do not have the ability to say, "well, it's been nice talking to you. I have to get going." and then WALK AWAY. I'm a chatter. Fail.
Thing #2: I struggle with saying no. Saying "when". I struggle to maintain a level of self-awareness allowing me to hear and consider a request, then genuinely say, "I'd really love to, but I can't take on anything else at the moment. Please keep me in mind in the future."
Thing #2 isn't all that shocking, really. Honestly – who UNDERschedules themselves these days? I am a Mom. I work full-time in a SERVICE industry. And I am a proud member of the overachieving, multitasking Millennial Generation.
But Thing #2 is why we're here today. Because, albeit small, I've had a breakthrough. I said no this week. To something I thought I really wanted and something a small part of me is already missing. Let's see, this starts about a year ago. I was invited to contribute as part of a Silicon Valley Blog called Deep South Moms in March of 2010. I posted a few times a month and enjoyed the community that SV Mom Blogs had developed. But it didn't last. Just a few months after I joined the team we were all informed that Silicon Valley Moms would no longer be operating as such — the future of this nationwide network of blogs was uncertain.
There were rumors for awhile that it would be purchased by someone new or would be reinstated or would just be deleted from the blogosphere altogether — and no new posts were being added to the site. Most of the SV Moms writers moved on to other projects and other priorities. I did the same. And now, months later, there's been another announcement. The original SV Moms team has joined forces with Technorati – one of the largest blog search engines out there.
Ok, ok. The point. See? The chatting thing.
I had until this week to fill out the applications and paperwork to be a contributor at Technorati – which would be awesome. My old posts from Deep South Moms would migrate over to the Technorati site and have new life via a new audience. But I'd also feel obligated to contribute content to the new site on a regular basis. And that's where I got stuck. And I said no.
That feels so good.
Because I know darn well I don't have time to take on another project right now. I've recently started contributing to the Shutterfly blog, Picture More – which is an absolute dream come true. I am a huge fan of Shutterfly and having the chance to be part of something I believe to be special – is really fun. And I've been contributing pretty regularly to a family magazine in NWA called Peekaboo. Ahh yes – and despite my recent misadventures with my iPhone, I (am still allowed to) write a regular technology column for NWA Motherlode.
So this writing thing? I'm scratching my itch. I really am. And though it would have been a great opportunity — I know I made the right decision by walking away.
One of the downsides to not joining the Technorati team is I'm not entirely certain what will happen to those original pieces I posted via the Deep South Moms blog. I imagine they will disappear once the old blog is taken down – and we can't have that, can we? So over the next few weeks, I'll be posting them here. Giving them a new home. Where they rightly belong.
I'll still have trouble saying no. It'll probably happen today, in fact. But saying no to a new blogging project means I'll get to focus on the ones I already have — and maybe go to bed a little earlier.
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