It’s the start of a new season here in Minnesota. The leaves are changing. The Vikings are back (and playing great!). And the annual barrage of neighborhood garage sales is in full swing, because I’m sure it feels good to get rid of some of the things we no longer need or use.
On the flip side, we all know some people who have a very difficult time letting go of some things. We call them hoarders.
I’m going to guess most of us aren’t hoarders when it comes to possessions; but, many of us might be hoarders when it comes to our commitments
Busyness is worn like a badge of honor these days. The requests for your time and energy seem to be never-ending. It’s so easy to accumulate commitments and say “yes” to every thing. Before long, we become paralyzed by our own schedules, locked into tasks and commitments that probably are not as important as we make them to be.
Bob Goff, author, speaker, and all-around inspirational guy, has a very interesting take on saying “No” to things that aren’t as vital.
Every Thursday, he quits something.
Sometimes, that may be something small like ending his job on time so he can be home with his family. Sometimes, it’s big, like quitting his job entirely.
Whatever it may be, It can be difficult to identify what parts of your schedule need to go because everything probably looks really important in the moment. So here’s a few ways to determine what commitments you might need to let go:
- Some commitments don’t follow the rest of the path for your life. Sometimes we make commitments because they’re fun or interesting. Maybe we make commitments in a lapse of judgement. We all find ourselves locked into things that don’t match up with the direction we are headed. Commitments like this can potentially hinder you from your greater purpose in life.
- Some commitments have simply run their course. For a long time, I offered guitar lessons after I graduated college. I needed the extra cash, and it was pretty enjoyable for me. Fast forward six months, and I was working a full-time job and had accumulated many more parts of my weekly schedule. Lessons weren’t really making me that much, and it was a huge time commitment. Sometimes things we commit to are good for a season, but we need to move when new things come into play.
- Some commitments are ready to go to someone else. A mark of great leadership is passing on tasks or responsibilities to someone else. As we move forward as a leader, we run the risk of becoming bogged down with all duties we collect. Rather than be bogged down, we can empower others to do the work.
All things being said, let me be clear–don't quit just because something is hard. Quit things so that you can give your time, your energy, and your resources to what really matters.
What commitment do you need to release today? What’s in your life that doesn’t need to be? If you’re feeling overwhelmed and held down by your commitments, maybe it’s time to let a few things go with a garage sale of your own.