Doing Fewer Things Better

I have been struck with the notion that I’m doing too much.

Writing here, writing at GAB, doing admin tasks for GAB, trying to get articles published, trying to make some extra money so we can buy a house and take a vacation, trying to write an Op-Ed after the awesome Op-Ed Project seminar, teaching like my hair is on fire, reading (at all), being a good wife/daughter/friend/pet owner/human being… It’s all exhausting.

So I started thinking… what if I could do fewer things better? What if I could throw all of my focus into a few things and really focus on just those things? I’d probably be happier, less stressed, and I’d definitely beat myself up less for getting nothing done because, with a shorter to do list, it would look like I was accomplishing a lot more.

I had to prioritize. What was most important to me? Here’s what I came up with, in no particular order:

  • Serious writing (GAB, op-eds, published articles) – and this includes reading, for how do we write if we don’t read?
  • Teaching like I mean it
  • Spending time with friends and family (being a good person)
  • Buying a house

That’s still a lot of priorities, but it seems like a smaller list, yes? Less overwhelming, for sure.

But, unfortunately, blogging isn’t on there. It’s not that I don’t love blogging. I do. I like being able to spew whatever it is I want on a blog, but I also feel like I’ve sort of outgrown Small Strokes. I started it to chronicle my endeavours through grad school, then I got engaged and I wrote about that, then I got married and wrote about that. Now, we’re through the first year and everything I could say about us seems to have been said – for a while, at least. And I’m starting to feel pigeonholed. I’m sort of sick of being the “feminist wife” and I’d like to focus on more serious writing of different subject matters. It’s also sort of ridiculously hard work to make a blog successful; you have to update it frequently, you have to think of things to write, think of things that are appropriate to write for your audience, and on top of it all, you aren’t even paid that much. Not to mention you don’t get much for ads on the site, and you have to update really frequently to even keep the ads let alone make any revenue from them. I’m not saying blogging is all about money, but considering what other venues for writing pay, this is next to nothing, and if one of my priorities is buying a house, I need to think about those things.

All this is to say that I’ve decided to take a break from Small Strokes. I’m not sure what I’ll be doing with it from here on out (and it will remain here for probably at least another year because that’s what I paid for with my hosting site), but I’m going to try to follow other pursuits for a while. Never fear; if you still want to read some of my writing, I’ll be over at my personal site blogging occasionally, mostly about books and maybe my life a little, but not as much as I did here. I’ll also probably be on Tumblr from time to time. I just want blogging to be fun again, not a job.

I’ve taken many breaks from Small Strokes, as you know if you’ve followed me for a long time. And this might just be another break. But it might not, depending on how things pan out. Either way, you all have been an incredible audience, and an inspiration to me on so many levels. Thank you for your comments, questions, guest posts, and overal support. And I hope to see you over at my other site!

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