Scott Postma

A blog about the Great Books, the Craft of Writing, and Human Flourishing.

A Diminished Life Means Diluted Work

Some people are out of their element if they don’t have their hands in numerous projects and pursuits. I’m not one of those people.

I’m one of those who too frequently puts my hands in numerous projects and pursuits, and then gets bogged down and overwhelmed.

I then become unproductive and tend to get depressed.

For those who are at their best with many irons in lots of fires, this post is not for you.

For the rest of us, remember opportunity does not equal obligation.

If your workflow is suffering, maybe your life is getting stretched too thin. When your quality of life is diminished, your quality of work will be diluted.

Here are ten ideas you might try to help you focus so you can create meaningful art and make a difference that matters.

  1. Unsubscribe to the numerous blogs and subscriptions you feel obligated to read–even if it’s this one.
  2. List the top 25 things on your bucket list. Right now. Circle five. discard the rest. Order the five beginning at one. Discard two through four. Work on number one until it is finished. Then move to number two.
  3. Carve out two hours per day without electronic devices of any kind and talk face-to-face with the people you love.
  4. Eliminate unnecessary choices, i.e. streamline your diet, your wardrobe, and your grooming habits.
  5. Set a writing time or goal. Only deviate from it for your funeral.
  6. Set a consistent reading goal, i.e. one chapter per day, etc. Only deviate from it for your funeral.
  7. Schedule your sleep pattern. i.e. schedule a consistent nap time, bedtime, and/or rise time.
  8. Listen to a helpful podcast or audiobook instead of the news or radio when driving or traveling.
  9. Turn off the TV.
  10. Unsubscribe to social media that does not benefit you, financially, or where you’re not contributing generously.

Which, if any, of the above should you do, today?

(Visited 76 times, 1 visits today)

About Scott Postma

Scott is a writer and teacher living in North Idaho. He loves teaching the Great Books, writing and blogging, and collecting more books than he'll ever read in a lifetime. You can subscribe to the tribe and follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus.

Subscribe for free, and get Write Like A Human, a resource that will teach you C.S. Lewis’s “secret sauce” for excellent writing. Plus, I’ll send you updates directly to your inbox every time I post.


Comments Policy: Comments that are relevant and add value to the conversation are encouraged, even if they express disagreement with the topic or the writer. All comments must be free from gross profanity, or otherwise distasteful language (at moderator’s discretion), and accompanied by a valid first name and email address (all anonymous comments are blocked).

3 Replies

  1. Amy

    Insightful post! I am slowly realizing that multitasking that more of a myth than a reality. It’s better to actually bake one apple pie than to half-finish a dozen pies. Of course, there are certain occupations and callings (thinking of motherhood in particular) that require a certain level of multitasking. But if all we do stems from the same desire to worship God (Psalm 27:4), I believe we can find that focus and unity even during seasons when our time and resources are stretched thin.

  2. John

    Scott, thank you for this pick me up. I, like you, stretch myself thin. I really needed to hear this. How did you know? I’m Laughing.

    1. Ah, because I was writing to myself and thought there might be others who needed to hear what I did. Glad it was a help, John.