i can't do it all //

7:00 AM

I am my toughest critic.

I came to terms with that fact long ago. I always overanalyze what I do. Criticize myself for stupid mistakes. See all the flaws in my work.

And perhaps most of all, get down on myself when I can't do it all.

I'm going to be real here, guys. I struggle a lot with expecting too much of myself. I try to do it all: post twice a week (on my posting days, mind you--I kick myself whenever I'm late), read all the books, reply to blog comments (you can see how well I'm doing on that *coughs*), get together with friends, spend time with family, get schoolwork done, do creative things, keep on track with writing, do my devotions, keep my room spotless, get enough sleep...

The list goes on. And on. And onnnnnn.

But I just can't. I can't do it all. Things fall through the cracks; that's just inevitable when I overload myself with things to do. And I beat myself up over it. 

It's a frustrating, debilitating feeling when I lose control and things don't get accomplished. Sometimes, I just give up entirely on everything when that happens. After all, if I couldn't get that thing done, how can I expect myself to do anything else right?

But here's the deal. I CAN'T DO EVERYTHING. No matter what I tell myself, there's just no possible way I can get everything done all. the. time. 

And that's okay. In fact, it's just another reminder of the fact that we can't do it on our own. Without Someone higher than ourselves, we would be completely lost. It's only when we learn to release our white-knuckled hold on the steering wheel and allow Him to take control that we can breathe. 

In all honesty, I'm still not at the point where I've relinquished 100% of my control to God. (But c'mon, who is??) I still hold on tightly to things, still think it's up to me to get everything done. And still get frustrated at myself when I don't accomplish everything. I'll most likely struggle with this my whole life.

But I can find some peace in knowing that my purpose in life is not to please other people. It's to glorify God. And when I'm doing that, my overachieving self can find fulfillment.

Just some things I've been thinking about lately. Don't get me wrong, this summer has been amazing. But I've gotten a little caught up in how I haven't done everything I'm supposed to/want to do. This post is mostly for me--a reminder that I DON'T HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING. I can't do everything. And that is totally, one-hundred-percent okay.

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  1. I struggle with this all. the. time. *hugs* Something I have to keep reminding myself is that excellence is just doing the best I can with what I have. We always compare our performance to how much we should be able to get done under IDEAL conditions, so we always fall short. Sometimes we have less time, less energy, less inspiration, less whatever, and we stress out over getting lesser results.

    I love what you said about depending on Someone greater! Such a beautiful reminder for when we overpressure ourselves.

    1. *hugs you back* Great point! We really can only do the best we can do...although I admittedly am not satisfied with that most of the time. It's something I'll probably ALWAYS struggle with, but I can find peace in knowing that I was never intended to get everything done. Not on my own.

      Thank you! He is the one whom we should (but often don't!) cling to. This post was more a reminder to myself than anything else. ;)

  2. ugh this post is so me. i've been trying to work on it, but even now I have several things on my list to do that are just stressing me out. (like how I barely wrote yesterday and now have to catch up but don't feel like it xP) anyways, thanks for this reminder, Mary! <33

    1. SAME HERE. To be honest, I'll probably be working on this for a looooong time. (And yep, the writing woes are real. XD)

      You're so welcome. <33

  3. Oh, Mary, I sooo understand this struggle! My problem is, I feel guilty no matter WHAT I'm doing. If I'm working all the time, I'm feeling guilty that I'm not spending time with family. If I'm relaxing, I'm feeling guilty that I'm not working. And there's always SOMETHING that needs doing.

    I'm the WORST at the whole balancing act. (I think I'll be spending the rest of my life finding that perfect balance of work and play. Lol.) But I know taking things one at a time helps me a lot. And looking at my ACCOMPLISHMENTS, instead of the things I HAVEN'T done yet, helps me stop beating myself up over it all.

    But, aaahhh, Mary! What you said touched me so much. You're so right, that when WE take control of our lives, it'll spiral into chaos. It's when we let go and allow God to take over, that things fall into place and our priorities refocus. Because life is short, and our time on this earth is for glorifying Him. If we don't answer that blog comment right away or miss a blog post for one week, it's okay. What matters is that our lives glorify God.

    It IS totally 100% okay if you don't get it all done. You're an amazing person, Mary. And you do wonderful things! You absolutely glorify God. His light shines through you all the time, and blesses me SO MUCH. Keep trekking on. You're doing wonderful. *HUGS*

    1. I KNOW. Arghhh, it's a losing battle on both sides! Like right now, I'm replying to a bunch of old comments, and I feel guilty for not reading, writing, or spending time with family. :P

      That's very true! That's one of the reasons I write down at least one good "memory" from every day (well, most days) and stick it in a memory jar. That at least reminds me that I've accomplished a lot, even on the days it doesn't feel like it.

      I'M SO GLAD IT DID. *hugs* And goshhhh, what you said touched ME. It's the truth! <3

      *is tearing up* (Darn my emotions! I read this over a month ago, and I'm tearing up again rereading it? XD) THANK YOU SO MUCH, MY DEAR LAURI. You're really one of the brightest spots in my life! Such an encouragement to me always. <3

  4. Agh I needed this! Thank you!!!!!

    1. I'm so glad!! You're very welcome. ^_^

  5. Totally agree, Mary! I do this SO often. Thanks for the reminder to give it all to God and not feel like we have to do everything!


    1. It's nice to know I'm not the only one who feels this way at times. So glad this post touched you in some way. <3