Friday, May 12, 2017

Winnowing

Something I often tell my younger staff members at work is that as you get older, you have to prune your life down to fewer and fewer things.  In our youth, we really can have and do it all: family, school, church, sports, music, friends, clubs, social.  Through the seasons of life, we learn we have to pare down and say no, as our obligations get deeper and our need to focus gets sharper.

Mostly of her doing, Jada is arriving at this important life lesson.  She enjoys all of her extra-curricular activities, and enjoys that she has a lot of them.  But she knows there is a trade-off in terms of time and energy, especially for school.  And, knowing that she wants to do better in school, she is making some preliminary decisions to cut out some activities so she is able to hit the books harder and stay on top of assignments better.

Just to clarify, I am not on the "kids are overscheduled" bandwagon.  Learning how to juggle is an important life lesson that gets learned in childhood when you have to take responsibility for multiple things and not have anything fall through the cracks.  Jada likes everything she is involved in, so it's not a matter of dissatisfaction or burnout.  But, on the margins, saying no to one thing allows her to give a better yes to other things, and she has decided that having more space for school is worth losing things that she otherwise likes and would want to spend time on.

I'm proud of her for reaching these conclusions, and for the motivations and thought processes that went into arriving at those conclusions.  I think she's going to be alright.

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