Valley of the Shadow of Overcommitment

I wasn’t going to post today, but I saw this and decided to hammer out something quickly. Tom Cadorette (@cadorette) said this today on Twitter, and it read like he was using dark sorcery to pluck a thought from my head:

Lesson learned: if you overcommit to nearly everyone, there likely won’t be anyone you won’t leave disappointed. Time to winnow commitments.

Fuck yes. Preach, Brother Tom. I’m dealing right now with my period of disappointing people due to  overcommitment. I wrote this little thing this morning during my shuttle ride to work, but it was too long for Twitter.

Yea, though while I walk through the valley of the shadow of overcommitment, I will fear no lasting despair. For I know the price of saying Yes, and shall no longer treat lightly making such compacts with others.

In the last month, I’ve been let go from one project, quit three others, pushed half a dozen to a few months down the road, turned down some convention appearances, and I still feel overwhelmed. But I’m unburying myself, working 3-4 hours after my day job and a lot on the weekends to do so. That’s a good feeling.

Right now, I’m in my freelancing Age of Overcommitment. Soon I will be past this, and be in my Age of Getting Shit Done. That light at the end of the tunnel is awesome, but I had disappoint a lot of people in order to even see that light. I truly hate that, but that’s the price I gotta pay (and others are forced to pay, hence why I hate it).

Here’s hoping, anyway.

– Ryan