I am reading a very interesting book.
Quitter. by Jon Acuff
Now my husband likes to tease me because I have the tendency to “weave” any book that I am currently reading into whatever conversation we are having. For example:
Him: “Hey Sweetie, next time you go to the commissary, could you pick up some razors for me?”
Me: “You know, that reminds me…I am reading a book about time management. According to Dr. So-and-So, I need to free up more time for the things that are important to me by having you and the kids take more ownership in the areas of your lives that you ask me to handle. Therefore, I have posted the commissary list on the refrigerator. If you need something, it is up to you to write it on the list. When you simply mention things to me in passing, you abdicate responsibility for the task and it somehow becomes my responsibility. This makes me feel undervalued, because I am running around trying to meet all of your needs, the kids’ needs, and my own needs. I simply can’t do it all, and I really need you to step up and take responsibility.”
I think he was expecting me to say, “Oh sure, no problem.”
So, every time I start a sentence with “Hey honey, I am reading a great book…” hubby gets that glazed-over, deer-in-headlights look, and I know that he has retreated into his mental man-cave until the danger of amateur spousal psychoanalysis has passed.
However, I really am enjoying this book, so rather than torture my husband with my thoughts on it, I decided to discuss it here.
No one wants to be a “quitter.” In American society, it is considered an act of cowardice or failure to “quit” something. We are brought up to believe that “winners never quit, and quitters never win.” What a load of crap!
Now, it is true that we cannot expect to hop around from thing to thing, or idea to idea, constantly giving up when obstacles present themselves.
But, when it is obvious that something is not a “fit” for you, are you expected to stay with it, indefinitely? Of course not.
And this is the main crux of this book. We all have dreams, passions, interests, and goals that we would like to pursue. And somehow, our society has romanticized those people who give up everything to follow said dreams, etc. But that is not the way it should be.
There has to be a bridge between living your life as it is right now, and living the life you desire to live in the land of “someday.”
The best way to do this is not to hate your current situation and daydream about a better life (although yours truly is quite guilty of this from time to time). Rather, you should embrace your current state and begin to perform with excellence, looking for opportunities to incorporate the skills necessary to accomplish your long-term goals.
Become intentional about how you perform in life. Don’t see your current job or situation as an obstacle. Rather, use it as a stepping stone or a building block to where you want to go.
Even if your current job has nothing to do with your passion, you can figure out ways to become “excellent.”
Now I am only about a third of the way through this book, but I gather that part of Acuff’s message is that excellence is a habit. It must be cultivated and developed intentionally. It does not happen by accident.
Let me repeat that:
Excellence does not happen by accident.
You can’t go through your daily life being lazy, sloppy, and uncommitted and expect to turn into a creative, energetic ball of excellence on the weekend when you are working on your passion. No…you must make excellence a habit. Not perfection…excellence.
OK, so in order to be an excellent mother, I need to get up out of this chair and get my day started, otherwise I will be sending my kids off to school in questionable clothing choices and lunches consisting primarily of chemicals I cannot spell not pronounce. (Which does not really jive with the whole “Healthy Mom” part of this blog’s title.)
Have an excellent day, and don’t quit your day job! (just yet)