Self-Sabotage

posted in: Life 118 comments

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I believe I self-sabotage.

By that I mean, I deny myself opportunities to do more.

I was recently approached by a local parenting site to explore how they can work with me in various ways, one being possibly being a monthly contributor to their newsletter. After a few weeks of exchanging emails with the website founder, and me making excuses not to meet up for coffee to discuss more, I finally wrote back and said, I’m sorry, I don’t think I can do this.

Isn’t it most bloggers’ dream/ ambition/ desire to get paid to write eventually?

Isn’t it natural to want to get more experience writing for a credible website in an area you are interested in and may in fact, be an ‘expert’? (by virtue of being a parent)

Wasn’t I the one who was publicly ranting on Twitter a few months ago about how a friend of mine, single and childless, is writing articles for a major website in their (wait for this), parenting category, and it should be people like me, who is actually a parent, who should be writing those articles?

Yet, here I was, presented with a chance to do what I love. Write. And get paid for it.

And I said no.

I’ve also turned down various freelance writing and public relations job opportunities in the last 3 years from my network of contacts built through my 10-year career.

I’ve said no to folks who have asked me to bake cupcakes, cookies, cakes – and that they’ll pay for them.

Yes, I’m a self-saboteur.

I turn down opportunities to do stuff I love because I’m afraid that if I have the pressure of being paid, of conforming to deadlines, of doing something that feels too much like work – I will no longer love it.

And that will be a tragedy.

That, or I’m just lazy.

I realize that if folks from sites I love such as Babble read this post, they may never ask me to write for them. Which is ironic, since I actually wouldn’t mind giving that a shot. Yup, I’m a bundle of self-contradictions. Or I’m just holding out for the right opportunity. Babble, call me, ok?

Are you a self-saboteur? Or just lazy?

 

Alison
Alison Lee is a former PR and marketing professional turned work-at-home mother. After a 10-year career in various PR agencies, and of the world’s biggest sports brands, Alison traded in product launches and world travel, for sippy cups, diapers, and breastfeeding. Alison's writing has been featured on Mamalode, On Parenting at The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, Everyday Family, Scary Mommy, and DrGreene.com. She is one of 35 essayists in the anthology, My Other Ex: Women’s True Stories of Leaving and Losing Friends. In 2012, she founded Little Love Media, a social media consultancy specializing in blog book tours, and because she doesn’t sleep, is an editor at BonBon Break, an online magazine. Alison lives in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia with her husband and four children (two boys and boy/ girl twins).
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  • March 22, 2012 RoryBore

    I can totally understand this! writing has been such a personal outlet for so long…even starting to blog gave me shakes at first. I almost felt naked — you make yourself so vulnerable when “put it all out there.” I can’t imagine what also having the pressure to perform to earn your pay might do to me. I always fear my mojo will flee, yelling over it’s shoulder “sell out!”.
    so weird, when in reality, you have a burning, yearning desire to write.
    RoryBore recently wrote…Poetry and Quotes #11: Ode to SpringMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      It’s totally weird. I love to write and when I hear others get paid to write, I’m like, hey, pick me, pick me!

      Then I get picked and I’m all, er, I don’t know. Sigh.

  • March 22, 2012 Amber

    You sure it was self-sabotage and not self-preservation? Sounds like you said no to something you weren’t truly excited about, which actually takes strength to do! Especially when there is that money carrot dangling in front of you. Nothing wrong with holding out for the right gig! Yo, Babble, call me too, m’kay?
    Amber recently wrote…Comment on Why Five-Year-Olds Can’t Drive by J.B.My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I think my husband said the exact same thing you did – self-preservation, not really excited about this gig and holding out for something bigger.

      Babble should totally hire you, you’re awesome, Amber!

  • March 22, 2012 Phoenix The Blogging Mama

    I have the same issue! My blog has been going strong for 5yrs and I have been approached often to write articles etc. I have never done it for fear of what comes next.. I guess I am afraid of the unknown. I will step into the unknown if you will! lol 🙂
    Phoenix The Blogging Mama recently wrote…Black and White Wednesday #1My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Oh Phoenix, you totally should! I should too. I should. Yes, yes I should (see how I’m trying to convince myself?).

  • March 22, 2012 Christine

    Interesting…I was thinking of self-sabotage in the sense of saying yes to many opportunities only to be completely overwhelmed and unhappy in the end. I believe you know what you are doing and are taking care of yourself and your family.
    Christine recently wrote…The Curiosity Cycle – A Book ReviewMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      That’s one way to look at it. For me though, it’s always not getting myself into things because I’ve convinced myself that I will botch the job. Hence, self-sabotage. I think therefore I don’t sort of situation!

  • March 22, 2012 Stephanie

    I can relate… I often get asked to take photos for friends and family and get paid for it… I love to take photos and have taken a few of the opportunities but recently I feel myself pulling back. I think for me it’s more insecurity… “what if I do it and they realize I am not that great”. So maybe a bit of self-sabotage, but a lot of insecurity as well. Sometimes I really have to weigh whether I am doing it because they want me to or because it is something I really want to do.
    Stephanie recently wrote…Erin Condren Gift Card GIVEAWAY!!My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Yes, insecurity does come into play with me as well. I think if you really want to do it, then you don’t hesitate. If you hesitate, there has to be a reason behind it, yes?

  • March 22, 2012 Galit Breen

    I so get this, girl!

    There’s probably an equal mix of the two in all if us, yes?
    Galit Breen recently wrote…Cleaning Tips for Busy ParentsMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Yes, probably! In my case, laziness is disproportionately looming larger in my life right now 🙂

  • March 22, 2012 Christine

    I too was thinking of self-sabotage in terms of taking on too much. I think that what you’re doing is the opposite. You don’t want to take an opportunity just because it’s an opportunity and then not being able to do it well or have it take so much time/energy that you are not being true to who you are. It takes guts to say no.
    Christine recently wrote…Daydreaming on PinterestMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Thanks Christine for your encouraging and kind words! That’s what I’m afraid of, not living up to expectations. Well, part of it anyway.

  • March 22, 2012 Stasha

    I am a major self-sabotur. I take it a step further. I do the job but choke when I have to ask for payment. Oh well…
    Stasha recently wrote…Spring is comingMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      You’re just too polite to! Not self-sabotaging at all.

  • March 22, 2012 Runnermom-jen

    Alison, I think you’re one smart cookie. Because in the long run, if you don’t enjoy it, and it feels like work, you won’t be happy…and that’s our goal right? I think you’ll know when the right opportunity comes along. It just hasn’t happened yet 🙂
    Runnermom-jen recently wrote…The Easy RunMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Jen, you’re smarter than me! 🙂 I hope I won’t be too up to my eyeballs in poop, pee and puke to not see a great opportunity if and when it comes along.

  • March 22, 2012 julie gardner

    Oh honey honey honey.
    You can’t put a price tag on sanity.

    With a two-year-old and a new baby on the way, you don’t need to take anything else on.

    (This is my humble opinion and I’m a self-proclaimed underachiever, so take this with a grain of salt.)

    But seriously. Happiness, time, LESS stress?

    These things are priceless. Give this gift to yourself if you can. And don’t call it sabotage.

    (Opportunity will be knocking later, too. Promise.)

    Love. Love. Love.
    julie gardner recently wrote…Today call me challengedMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Eek you made me cry a little!

      Thank you for the perspective (as always). Stress, yes, that I don’t need. Validation, I do. Perhaps that’s what I see?

      And you’re not an underachiever. Just sayin’, book writer marathoner.

  • March 22, 2012 Leigh Ann

    I do this sometimes because I’m afraid I’ll fail. Or I’m afraid I won’t have the time to do it. But then I think about it way too much, take it on, and then all of the sudden I’m doing way too much. But I totally get it.

    And I agree with Julie. You are going to be plenty busy in a very short time. I try to remind myself that there is really no rush in my field, and that as long as I work hard now, work will still be there for me when I have a little more time and at least 2 kids in school 🙂
    Leigh Ann recently wrote…I got your back, Twilight SparkleMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I’m so scared I will run out of steam in a few years – like if I don’t do this now, maybe I never will because I’ve lost interest, y’know? Sigh.

  • March 22, 2012 angela

    Yes, sometimes I do things to sabotage myself in various areas of my life 🙁
    angela recently wrote…Small AgainMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Oh Angela. You are doing so much already.

  • March 22, 2012 Bruna

    I can totally understand what you’re saying and how you feel. I write because I love it and it’s fun. If I know I have to write because I have to, it changes everything for me. Unless it’s writing my own book one day … that would be different 😛
    Bruna recently wrote…old friends, new friends, true friendsMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Thanks for understanding, Bruna!

  • March 22, 2012 Ann

    I think I have a bit of both and also a ton of ambition if the right thing comes along. I suspect that one day there’ll be something you’ll say yes to and there will be no stopping you.

    Hugs, my friend.
    Ann recently wrote…Pasta Primavera ReduxMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Ann, I hope you’re right!!

      (and thank you for the regular virtual hugs, they keep me sane!)

  • March 22, 2012 Kimberly

    I do this too. Part of me feels that if I’m pressured into deadlines and forced into it then I will fall out of love with that hobby. I don’t want to lose that part of me.

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      #TwinThing

  • March 22, 2012 Mirjam

    The last thing I would call you is lazy!
    I understand this completely. When you are ready, you will take the plunge, and you will know that it is the right timing for you. And you will not look back at opportunities that have past you by.
    xo
    Mirjam recently wrote…SunshineMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Aw, thanks Mirjam!!

      But sometimes, I AM lazy. Sometimes, all I want to do is sit around and eat gummy bears. 🙂

  • March 22, 2012 Leslie

    I definitely self-sabotage. There are truly limits to what you can say ‘yes’ to; but if you’ve identified an opportunity you actually want to pursue, I say contact them and put an offer out there!
    Leslie recently wrote…Saying GoodbyeMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Ok Babble, watch out for me!

  • March 22, 2012 Mark

    Thanks for writing about this.
    I was afraid to have advertising on my site for sort of the same reasons, I think. If I felt the pressure to put out two or three posts a week, I would totally freeze.
    Thanks for making me think.
    m.
    Mark recently wrote…Oh, for crying out loud!My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Mark, you do what’s right for you and your blog.

      (you’re awesome, by the way)

  • March 22, 2012 Susan

    That’s too bad Alison, would have been a neat opportunity. That said, I completely understand…especially with (soon-to-be) 2 young children at home. The stress sometimes just isn’t worth it.
    When the time is right, I am sure something amazing will come along.
    Susan recently wrote…The Birthday GirlMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Susan, I sure hope so. This particular website is open to working with me in the near future – I hope they keep their word 🙂

  • March 22, 2012 Twisted Domestic Goddess

    Funny I was just mulling over a similar idea about myself this morning. I have my first guest blog post due…tomorrow.Guess how much I’ve written? Yup NADA

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Oh my, I hope you did manage to write something! I always find the pressure of writing an awesome guest post particularly terrifying.

  • March 22, 2012 Laura

    That’s tough. I feel like I would have done the same thing as you. Part of the reality is though that I imagine, like me, you have a hard time finding time. You’re creating a baby. You’ve got a toddler to take care of. Recently some opportunities have come my way that I have just had to turn down because I know, at the moment, I just don’t have the energy. Even the idea of doing something more, at the moment, is overwhelming. I don’t think that is self-sabotage or laziness. It is just the reality of my life. And I imagine it is the reality of your life too. No need adding more to your plate until you know you definitely can rock it! 🙂
    Laura recently wrote…And Then There Were TwoMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Thank you Laura, it’s so good to be able to hear from someone going through the same thing. Yes, the thought of taking on more IS totally overwhelming. I’m just trying to take one day at a time now.

  • March 22, 2012 Jess

    Writing for some sites (even if you get paid) can be very stressful, especially if they have monthly stat demands. I would probably turn down those opportunities too because for me the money is not with the stress. I like my life easy.

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I like my life easy too. Gosh it didn’t even cross my mind that they might be pushing monthly stat demands on me!

  • March 22, 2012 Just Jennifer

    I’m fairly certain I do the same thing sometimes. My issue is my eyesight. Also, fear of change. But, you may have noticed me talking about being OPEN to the POSSIBILITIES, so….I’m trying that!
    Just Jennifer recently wrote…SwingersMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      You go, Jen!

  • March 22, 2012 Brittany

    I do this and to be honest I am glad I do. Many times those deadlines are a HUGE weight with young kids and since we are SAHM’s they mean less time with our kids and dar I say it, well yes because I am writing about it, sometimes ignoring them a little. It sucks and I think it is unfair to them. So you do what feels really right…where you say hell yeah when you hear about it and cannot wait.

    I said hell yeah to Brica and it is awesome to be working again but the pressure is hard and I am trying to not freak out 🙂
    Brittany recently wrote…What possessed her?My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I know you will rock Brica, Brittany!! It’s so tailor-made for you 🙂

  • March 22, 2012 Wombat Central

    When faced with the opportunity to write for someone (paid or unpaid), my roadblock is my fear that all creativity will shrivel and die, and I’ll disappoint them. Not sure which category that fits. 😉
    Wombat Central recently wrote…The Pursuit of PerfectionMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Y’know, I have the same fear 🙂

  • March 23, 2012 Elaine

    I’ve done this with a few things too and this kinda ties into my post from yesterday, yes? 😉 I mean, sometimes I think we do it to ourselves where we don’t THINK we can be enough for that task or job so we let it go. I get it, I do.

    But you’re also about to have another baby and I bet that’s been part of your decisions lately too. As it should be.

    Maybe now is just not the time… not yet… but soon… ?
    Elaine recently wrote…So this week’s been a little differentMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I just worry that I’ll be too up to my eyeballs in poop, pee, puke and toddler shenanigans that the opportunity will pass me by. 🙂

  • March 23, 2012 Christine

    I have the same ambivalence about getting paid to do things I love (except acting. I’ll take that $ when it’s there.) It stems from a fear that once it becomes a commitment it might become a chore. And probably on some level a fear that I’m not up to the task. I wonder, though, if it’s self-sabotage or self-protection. Time and energy are so precious. I’ve become VERY selective in how I spend those very limited resources.
    Christine recently wrote…Music is My Girlfriend.My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I think self-preservation is a possibility. I mean, there’s only so much one can take on, right?

  • March 23, 2012 Bonnie Way

    Interesting… I think you do have to think about what you will love doing, though. I was offered a job tutoring some kids in writing. At first, it sounded perfect – I started writing when I was about their age so I thought I’d really enjoy encouraging young writers. I soon found out they needed tutoring with their English classes, not writing (there’s a difference!) and that they weren’t very self-motivated about it (their parents were pushing them for better grades). I found myself hating it. Plus, we were super busy then, so it was time away from my hubby and kids. I finally said no and I don’t regret it at all. On the other hand, if a major website or magazine asked me to write for them, I’d say yes immediately! 🙂
    Bonnie Way recently wrote…Memories CapturedMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      So sometimes, you just gotta take the plunge and see how it goes, right?

      I’m rooting for ya for an opportunity to come your way!

  • March 23, 2012 Jessica

    lol. I can relate to this. I’m a bit of both. I do get intimidated by having others expecting me to use my time to do a job that pays, but I’ve learned that it’s better to try and fail then to not try at all. I don’t try anything crazy, or anything that I know that I would not ever be able to do, but I do take some risks. BG was kind of a risk for me. With two little ones at home, I really didn’t think I had the time to add anything else on my plate. But I did and it works beautifully. I am open to other opportunities that are flexible but I’m not chasing down opportunities because I’m not at that point in my parenting journey when I can really afford to chase opportunities down. If that makes sense. So, sorry for the long response, but I say do what you can, and when you can no longer do something, don’t be afraid to just stop. Really. I hope this helps.
    Jessica recently wrote…52|11: Little Sisters RockMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Don’t apologize for the long response, I appreciate you taking time out to share your POV! It does help. And having a baby coming into the picture does have a lot to do with my decision. I just want to focus on my kids right now, not deadlines. BUT, I do question whether turning this down means I won’t have further opportunities. Sigh.

  • March 23, 2012 Julia

    I feel the same way from time to time, that I have let opportunities pass me by but I’ve come to learn that if I had chosen differently I wouldn’t be where I am now.
    Though I would love if you wrote for other sites, your blog is great.
    Julia recently wrote…Pin, Cook, EatMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Thanks Julia, that’s very sweet! I do write for another site as a contributor (voluntary, unpaid for) to World Moms Blog (www.worldmomsblog). I write there every 9-10 weeks or so! (next post will be next week!)

  • March 23, 2012 Christie

    Great post. I think it ultimately comes down to what makes you happiest. There is something to be said for writing your own stuff, in your own way, without any expectations from others. But I suppose there are still expectations even when we are just blogging on our own site – getting followers, pleasing readers, writing interesting content, etc.

    Good for you for going with your gut and staying true to yourself and what you need/want.

    But if you’ve got any pointers for getting enough blog traffic that another site wants you to write for them, I’m all ears 🙂
    Christie recently wrote…Lucy in the Sky with DiamondsMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Christie, I wish I had pointers 🙂 I think writing in your own voice, and good story telling is essential to draw in readers. That’s the advice I constantly tell MYSELF. Would I want to read this? If not, then I know it’s not right.

  • March 23, 2012 tracy

    Oh I am very much the same. Also, Babble won’t email me back. 😉
    tracy recently wrote…Now My 9 Year Old Will Never Buy a Ford..My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Babble does not know what they’re missing out on!

  • March 23, 2012 Mary Trunk

    Sometimes you just have to trust your gut. If it feels more like a burden than anything else then possibly you’ll always feel that. Wouldn’t it be worse to sign up for something and then try and get out of it later? You seem to have a good intuition – maybe that’s what I miss about pregnancy!!!

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      You’re right – trying to get out of something is infinitely harder than saying no in the first place.

      I like to think of it as intuition rather than self-sabotage. 🙂

  • March 23, 2012 Jamie

    I get scared when things like this come up. It’s very committal and what if I don’t want to. I don’t want to disappoint or not do a good job. So yeah, I’m with you on this one.
    Jamie recently wrote…brotherly loveMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I’m so relieved that I’m not the only one who feels that way!

  • March 23, 2012 Carri

    I don’t think you’re lazy. I think that once you’re being paid, it’s a job and not a hobby. Somehow, the money takes the fun out of it!
    Carri recently wrote…How Pinterest Made My St. Paddy’s Day AwesomeMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Yeah that’s always been my perspective!

  • March 23, 2012 My Inner Chick

    –Dear Mama A,
    when the writing gig is ‘Right,’ you will know it…

    Never sell yourself short. You are too good for that.

    Xxx Kissssssssssss
    My Inner Chick recently wrote…651 DaysMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Aw, thank you Kim, so sweet of you 🙂 xoxo

  • March 23, 2012 grace

    Maybe for you, it’s neither. Maybe it’s wanting to say “no” to other things so that you’ll have the time, space and energy to say “yes” the the opportunity (like Babble) that’s mind-blowing.

    Maybe.

    I have also struggled with this, but have decided that if I love something I’m likely going to love it even more if there is reward…like a mouse getting his treat after a long, but enjoyable maze!

    All this reminds me of that quote from one of my fave movies, Akeelah and the Bee:

    “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.” – Marianne Williamson

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      That is such a beautiful quote, thank you for sharing it!

      I like the mouse analogy too 🙂 Thanks for sharing your perspective Grace.

  • March 23, 2012 Julie

    I’m glad I caught this post this evening. I’m talented at a few things, and don’t mind saying so, but I think the fear of getting bogged down in deadlines and “have to’s” makes me step back when I start to build momentum.

    I understand what you’re saying. Totally get it.

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Oh Julie, thank you for understanding. Sometimes I think I’m an idiot. But when someone wise like you steps up and says me too, I know I’m not (an idiot). 🙂

  • March 23, 2012 momof12

    I think maybe I’m a little of both!
    Sandy

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I might be mostly just lazy these days 🙂

  • March 23, 2012 Kimberly

    I am so like you….
    I have zero confidence. Seriously. Low self esteem. I feel like I’m not good enough to approach companies etc….so I wait for them to come to me. And even then I get all worked up.
    Sigh…
    I get this mama.
    But you are wonderful and should flex them wings 😉

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Dude, you ARE wonderful and you need to know that and remember that every single day.

      You should flex your wings too. xo

  • March 23, 2012 JDaniel4's Mom

    I think you knew what you could handle right now. What a wise lady you are!
    JDaniel4’s Mom recently wrote…Read.Explore.Learn.- Whose Garden Is It?My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Thank you Deirdre, I do hope it was a wise choice.

  • March 23, 2012 Ado

    First, congrats on the offers. Well-done, mama!
    Now as you probably know I am an expert in the field of self-sabotage as I do it regularly. For ex., blogwise today I’m a few days late for getting back to an advertiser who has approached me to pay me for inserting 3 links into 3 different posts – easy money, I don’t even have to write anything, the advertiser totally works with my groove – so this, clearly, is self-sab. I will get to it today but should’ve done it days ago. THAT is self-sab.
    In your case, I think part of motherhood is keeping up with the redefining of yourself. Take stock – you are a full-time, busy mom with a thriving blog and another baby soon to arrive. It does not sound like self-sab to me here, it really sounds like you are taking care of yourself and your family. Self-sab would be accepting the newsletter gig, then procrastinating it weekly or just not doing it at all *after you said yes*.
    I think it’s just a mild case of needing to update your expectations of yourself now that you are knee-deep in the role of mother/CEO of the house. (-:
    Ado recently wrote…GuEsT pOsTiNg ToDaY!My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I like the title of CEO!

      I’ve always expected myself to be able to pull things off once I say yes. So perhaps deep down, it’s just self-preservation because I know I might actually fail at this newsletter task due to the impending new role of “mother of two” (ack!).

      And you don’t self-sabotage as much as you think you do 🙂

  • March 23, 2012 Kristen

    I think I get all worked up and put too much pressure on myself when something I love to do has had money thrown at it. I’m not only afraid that it will become “work” and I won’t love it anymore but that I will somehow not do it as well with a deadline in front of me. So, yes…I am right there beside you talking myself out of things (and we are eating some of your yummy desserts).
    Kristen recently wrote…A Day At Things I Can’t Say…My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Yes that’s exactly it, talking myself out of things! (and you’re always welcome at my dessert table)

  • March 23, 2012 Kir

    it’s a little hard for me to read this coming from YOU. Because I always think of you as one of bloggers who “knows how to do this right”.

    I spend precious moments being jealous of not getting freelance jobs or being able to write for SOMEONE, ANYONE.

    yet, like Kimsley said, I don’t want to come to hate writing or blogging because I am so overloaded or overextended.

    Also, I AM LAZY!!! very unlike you. I go to work, I come home, I want to lay on my bed and watch TV, the end.

    I know this must have been hard to write and I DO HOPE BABBLE reads it and asks you to write for them, thank you for sharing this. It was again, something I really needed to read today. xo
    Kir recently wrote…WOE:Gathering Buttercups: Meeting on Mulberry StreetMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Omigosh, you’re hardly lazy, sweet friend! You WORK, and write, and look after two active boys and a husband, AND write thoughtful comments and emails!

      Oh Babble, do you hear this? 🙂

  • March 24, 2012 Charlotte

    I don’t think this necessarily makes you a self-sabateur, but perhaps you realized that with another one on the way, having to conform to deadlines might just not be in the cards for you at the moment. I don’t know firsthand the amount of work required to mother, but I do know several mothers to know that it’s not everyone who can pull this off with gusto AND maintain a job on the side.

    You made a decision that is right for YOU. And that’s what’s most important.

    XOXO
    Charlotte recently wrote…beautiful morning, there’s no place i’d rather beMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I honestly have no idea how working mothers of more than one child do what they do!

      And thank you, for your sweet words.

  • March 24, 2012 Tonya

    Interesting topic… I think it’s more of a defense mechanism; you can only take on so much at the end of the day, ya know? And I believe when the time is right, you’ll leap and by that, I mean that you will take on more and evaluate opportunities that come your way.
    Tonya recently wrote…My BodyMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I hope so too, Tonya!

  • March 24, 2012 Natalie

    I went through this last year. And you know what I decided? My blog is for me. I love that I post when I want, about what I want. If I want to get paid, there are other avenues for that.

    Maybe you just knew, deep inside, that it wasn’t the right fit. You’ll know when the right one comes along.
    Natalie recently wrote…It’s Okay, BabyMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I hope so, Natalie. You’re right, it didn’t feel quite ‘right’, which is part of the reason I said no. Also, I didn’t start the blog/ writing for money 🙂

  • March 24, 2012 Mrs. Weber

    I completely understand. I, too, have turned down gigs for silly reasons. Mostly because I love to blog and I don’t want too many things to get in the way (because they have and it bugs me, even if I don’t get paid for blogging)! Go with your gut with opportunities and you’re right – the one that is perfect for you may just fall in your lap.

    You’d be an awesome Babble contributor!
    Mrs. Weber recently wrote…Fab5: Facts about Children’s Oral HealthMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      I hope Babble reads your comment! 🙂

  • Instead of self-sabotaging, I think you are a pretty smart lady. A lot of people would jump on those opportunities, only to realize 3 or 6 months down the road that it was too much for them, and they either weren’t enjoying it, or weren’t being successful. YOU, however, are one smart cookie. You already know yourself and your limits. More of us ladies should follow your lead. 🙂
    Sharon {Grumpy, Sleepy, and Bashful} recently wrote…Therapon, Take Me Away {Giveaway!}My Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Aw, thanks Sharon, that’s really kind of you to say so!

  • March 25, 2012 Kristin

    “I turn down opportunities to do stuff I love because I’m afraid that if I have the pressure of being paid, of conforming to deadlines, of doing something that feels too much like work – I will no longer love it.”

    I’ve been racking my brain trying to figure out why, exactly, I can’t bring myself to pursue writing opportunities outside my blog, even though that’s my ultimate dream and endgame. And you… you just neatly summed it up in one succinct sentence. And to that I can only say… yes. That. Exactly.

    It’s not laziness. With as much blood, sweat,and tears as I put into my blog, I am by no means lazy.

    It’s just fear, I think. Fear of the unknown. Plain and simple.
    Kristin recently wrote…Friday Tapas: The Chilled EditionMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      You’re such a brilliant writer – fear nothing, Kristin.

      Plus, you’re not lazy, which is a major bonus 🙂

  • March 25, 2012 Sandra

    At the risk of sounding cliché, when the right opportunity for YOU comes along, you will accept it without hesitation. That having been said, I think you should sell your wares, and by wares, I mean your baked goods, because it’s just a travesty that you’re denying the world of your sweetness 🙂 Congrats anyway on getting the opportunity, even if you chose not to accept it. I think that’s awesome! Really, I do!
    Sandra recently wrote…Gratuitous bikini shotsMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Aw, thanks Sandra!!

      I love baking so I really couldn’t put a price tag on it! People I love will always get a piece of the sweetness anyway, heh.

      (want some chocolate cake?)

  • March 25, 2012 wendy

    Do what you need to do; don’t say ‘yes’ for the sake of it. Most of us are trying to find our place in the world and in our work. No one can determine that for you but *you.*

    I never bake for people either.

    (btw missed the memories link up this month and HATE myself for it! grrrr)

    xo
    wendy recently wrote…Explaining The Lady From DubuqueMy Profile

    • March 25, 2012 Alison

      Thanks Wendy, that’s very good advice!

      (don’t worry, come back for the next Memories Captured link up, we start April 16!)

  • March 25, 2012 Stacey

    I can completely relate to your anxiety about taking on new projects right now. Even though I love to write, the idea of having a deadline or just “having” to write something at all stresses me to the point that it’s not fun and I don’t want to do it. (Not that I’ve gotten any offers.) Hopefully one day that will change for both of us! For now, I think you’ve got enough on your plate. You’re not self – sabotaging. You’re smart. And the right opportunity will come along at the right time.
    Stacey recently wrote…The QuestionMy Profile

    • March 26, 2012 Alison

      Thanks Stacey, very kind of you to say so 🙂

  • March 26, 2012 Lady Jennie

    Uh no. You’re about to have a baby!! I have also turned down paid opportunities to bake. But I think my life is already super full – yours is too. It’s hard to keep the quality of everything excellent and say yes, even to the things we love.
    Lady Jennie recently wrote…ProfiteroleMy Profile

    • March 26, 2012 Alison

      You’re right Jennie – my concern is quality. I don’t want to pump out 10 crap posts just because I get paid to do it!

  • March 26, 2012 Karyn Van Der Zwet

    Sometimes it’s just timing, don’t you think? When you feel like it’s right, you’ll go on and do what you need to do. Until then, prepare…?!
    Karyn Van Der Zwet recently wrote…The Definition of JoyMy Profile

    • March 26, 2012 Alison

      I guess preparing is a good thing! 🙂

  • March 26, 2012 Robin

    I know what you mean. I’m sort of the opposite – I will say yes to most things and then later decide I’m over committed or don’t actually really want to do it. But at least this leaves you time to spend in your own lovely community! (And, um, we should chat about Babble…)
    Robin recently wrote…Let’s Go Fly a KiteMy Profile

    • March 26, 2012 Alison

      I do have some lovely people here in my small circle!!

      Yeah, Babble? Call us.

  • March 26, 2012 Alexandra

    I don’t think you’re a self saboteur, I think you are very good at listening to that voice inside that says, “TOO MUCH!”

    I have said no to things I thought I’d never turn down. But I have to.

    Working toward a personal goal is not to be confused with spinning your wheels.

    Sometimes, it’s easy to confuse busy with work, when actually, it takes you further away from your personal goals.

    It’s a hard decision to make, especially when you want to say yes.

    I don’t think you’re lazy at all.
    Alexandra recently wrote…True ConfessionsMy Profile

    • March 26, 2012 Alison

      You always make me feel better, Alexandra. xo

      I do think taking on a paid writing gig would definitely have been too much, especially with the timing. I just hope I haven’t blown my chances!

  • March 26, 2012 Leighann

    Maybe you’re just waiting for the right fit?
    You know what you want and if you take on too many things you won’t be able to do the one you want when the opportunity presents itself.

    • March 26, 2012 Alison

      You’re right Leighann. In my heart of hearts, I didn’t feel that this opportunity was quite what I was looking for.

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Alison Profile PictureI'm Alison. Writer, a mother of four (two boys and boy/ girl twins), social media enthusiast and book lover. A believer in the power of chocolate and hugs. Chugging coffee as I type. Want to know more?

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