Jun 27, 2017


As defined by The Accidental Creative, pruning is saying no to things.  Cutting out opportunities, letting things go, reducing the number of tasks and obligations and projects.

I'm not good at it.  I want to do everything and say yes to everything.  I have a tendency to say yes and then figure out the "how" later.

But I'm working on this because I'm trying not to exhaust myself and because I don't live healthfully when I'm scrambling to get from this event to that or to complete things late into the night when everyone is asleep.

It's been tough to cut things out but here's what I've done so far!

Networking Groups

I have tried a TON at this point and I had 3 contenders that I was considering sticking with, in order to diversify my connections.  But I ended up cutting the all women group, which started out fun but is mostly comprised of MLMs (not my target market) and in the most recent event had anti-man vibes, which I thought was unnecessary and frankly?  Kind of bizarre.  And I also cut the referral group, which I wrote about not too long ago, because referrals feel forced and require additional time and energy that I don't want to give right now.

This leaves me just one networking group to stick with and that seems ultimately more productive.  I think I'll make stronger connections if I don't spread myself so thin AND I won't have to struggle to squeeze in networking days. 1 or 2 per month should be no problem.

Scuba Diving Lessons

I KNEW I didn't have time to pursue this but my dad is persuasive and how fun does this sound?!  He offered to pay, and for my mom to babysit, and I figured, "I'll make it work somehow."  Then 2 weeks before the first class, the nagging began.  "Did you read the book yet?"  "You better got on that."  "Quit slacking and read the book!"

I realized that "making it work" was actually doing my dad and myself a disservice because what he really wanted was not just someone to attend the class with him but someone to discuss his new hobby with.  Someone to be fully absorbed and interested and engaged.  And I can't do that right now.  I'm just not willing to prioritize any hobby, however fun, over spending time with my baby or working on client projects.  So I was going to half-ass the homework and he was going to be pissed off at me and then I'd feel guilty and instead of a cool new experience, it was going to be an obligation.

You guys should be proud of me because I realized this BEFORE the first class instead of waiting and thinking I can somehow do it all AND I had a grown-up conversation with my father about it.  We actually managed to discuss it amicably and decide it didn't make sense for me to do it.  I'm proud of both of us.

Running a Book Club

This one makes me the most sad!  There are no sci-fi/fantasy book clubs in Delaware.  I was halfway through the process of making "Life, the Universe, and Books" the DE sci-fi and fantasy book club on Meetup and I already made a private Facebook group before I stopped myself.  Do I really have time for this?  To read a book once a month, sure.  But to organize and promote a group?  No.  Instead I joined a new book club on Meetup that reads feminism-based books.  The first meeting was awesome AND the time investment was minimal.

What things, good and bad, have you cut out of your life?  Do you find it difficult to "prune"?

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  1. Pruning gives a good visualization for this! It sounds like these 3 things were probably so hard for you to choose, because they're things you'd enjoy, but knowing how much you can do is so much more important than putting half effort into something or feeling stressed leading up to it.

  2. I'm like you! I over commit big time! These days I'm trying to find a balance. Go you for figuring it out.

  3. I don't over commit, I'm pretty good about it. The one area I can't prune though is my parents. My mom, fine, when it's something I really don't want to do. But I can't say no to my dad. Like your dad with the scuba thing, I would have just done it anyway. Not that my dad would ever be up for something like that! He's already going to be 78 in September and has had a pacemaker for most of my life. Besides that he's in good health but getting old is getting old and I cannot stand the idea that one day he won't be here and I didn't get as much time with him as I could have. I would just have lifetime guilt over that, so I never say no to him. Luckily I say no to just about everything else so I have the time!

  4. Good for you for cutting some stuff out! Especially the stuff that didn't feel right or truly didn't interest you. I'm usually pretty good about saying no... the problem is sometimes I change my mind and say yes because I don't want to miss out. I'm trying to get better about committing to only the things I really want to do and spending time with only the people that I really love to be around and spend time with!


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