Lately I’ve felt a heavy load of clutter in my life. There is always so much stuff. Sometimes that takes form in projects at work, sometimes there are freelance projects that seem more complicated than they’re worth, and sometimes I hate having to try so hard to just relax with my wife without my phone buzzing or our dog throwing up on the rug.
The world is so noisy, and the draw–for whatever reason–is to always add more. In my work, I’m tempted to want to be great at everything. I want to be a great graphic designer, a brilliant web designer, an innovative film producer, and somehow figure out how to scrap some random materials together to build a huge stage design with tools I don’t know how to use.
I’m slowly beginning to realize I need to make some changes. In my work and in my life, there is too much everywhere, and it’s leaving me drained. The life I want to live isn’t sustainable. I need to take my own advice and intentionally change course.
I think we all have the tendency to expect more of ourselves than we expect of other people. Michael Jordan wasn’t a very good baseball player, but he was the greatest to ever play basketball. Both of those things are sports that require similar strengths both physically and mentally, but it’s absurd to expect someone to excel triumphantly at two fundamentally different games.
I don’t have to be great at everything I ever try. What I need is focus. Without it, I’ll be mediocre at several things. With it, maybe I stand a chance to grow and do something better.
Lately I’ve discovered a brilliant artist and author named Paul Jarvis. A few quotes from his blog resonate extra strong with me this morning:
“It seems better to fail at something that truly matters, rather than succeed at something that doesn’t.”
“Are we aligning with an actual purpose or direction we believe in, or are we robotically moving forward simply because that’s the direction we were initially pointing?”
“Busy work isn’t always important work.”
Choose one thing to be great at today, and force yourself to focus. From my experience, it’s just that simple. 🙂