On Doing Less, Focusing on What is Meaningful

focus on what is important plant roots

How many of the things you do in your free time are (still) meaningful to you? If you could learn anything, what would it be? Why are you sewing? Why are you blogging?

Before I get to the point and explain why I’m asking those questions, I will start with a short (super-short, I promise) story about keeping less for feeling better.

For a while now people in my team at work were complaining that there’s too much work, too many partners to work with and too little time for them to reach their goals and do quality work. The top management started looking into the issue and while the idea as to see where they needed to bring in more people, they discovered that they could actually afford doing less. It appeared that more than 70% of the partners and projects they were working with was bringing them 5% of their total monetary goal. Every month, every year.

So they decided to stop working on those 70% percent of accounts, focus on the ones that really mattered and use the extra time to think about what they wanted to do and find new best performing partners. 3 weeks later it was already working, people feeling more that they owned the situation and not the other way around, bringing in new partners and staying on course with their monetary goals.

I think this can apply to almost any areas of our lives. We sometimes do things because we got used to doing them, not because they bring us pleasure or are meaningful to our lives.

Think about the things you do in your free time. Do you always think or how you’d like to spend that time if you didn’t have a habit or the hobby of_________ (you fill in that space)?

I, for example realized I was spending a lot of my free time sewing bags for the shop. I like making things and I love when people send me feedback like: “love the bag, I wear it everywhere” or “made my day”.

But on the other hand, I wanted to learn more (and write more) about pattern making and didn’t have the time to do it.

I also tried to work on a new sewing project every weekend, but most of the time I would choose a 2-3 hour project because I didn’t have more than that to invest in it. I laso wasn’t investing enough time in learning new techniques, reading about sewing and pattern making, and overall enjoying the whole process.

I was speed-sewing and creating garments I knew how to deal with.

So I took a little vacation from the shop and started to spend my time more on the explorative and the learning part of sewing. And exploring other areas that interest me, such as illustration (see the image above:)

What about you? How often do you sew? Are you interested in learning new techniques or making really complicated garments? How much time in a week do you spend sewing?

And have a lovely Sunday!