“A “No” uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a “Yes” merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble.”
~ Gandhi

I’ve said,” yes,” a lot lately.  I hope I haven’t set myself up for an unhappy year.  I’ve said yes to presenting at Feminisms and Rhetoric; I’ve said yes to presenting at the Great Lakes History Conference; I’ve said yes to teaching a section of our senior capstone as an extra class; I’ve said yes to being on the Festival of Faith and Writing advisory committee; I’ve said yes to organizing a series of writing workshops for 8th graders at MLK academy; and I’m about to say yes to organize some professional development for additional schools.  That’s a lot in addition to the Teacher Research and Student Teaching seminars that were already on my schedule.  One thing that was on my schedule is not any longer.  Unfortunately for the organization, but fortunately for my workload, I don’t have to write a grant application to the National Writing Project this year.  Nor do I have to prepare a personnel review file.  Those two took up a lot of my time last fall.

Thinking through all of this, I am trying to generate some wisdom about my growing enthusiasm for thoroughly rewriting my dissertation into articles, maybe even a book.  I am here at a week-long Rhetoric Society of America seminar, and just being around these colleagues in the field energizes me.  I feel a strong intention being set in me to work on this project again.

I want to be careful, though, and to only set a balance of intentions that are possible.

“A pint can’t hold a quart – if it holds a pint it is doing all that can be expected of it.”
~ Margaret Deland

I wonder if Margaret Deland was a mother.  This sentiment reminds me that I can really, really only do so much.  Parenting is already the most important peach in my pint.  How many more can I fit before I begin to fail at fulfilling my intentions because the day simply can’t hold them all?  I know I have some slowness that can be quickened, some thinking that can be turned towards better ends.  I hope these small corrections can  lead me, minute by minute, to say yes to the right tasks and say no to the many others that I can’t also do.

“The art of leadership is saying no, not saying yes. It is very easy to say yes.”
~ Tony Blair

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