Reclaiming time can happen in many different ways and sometimes it’s by honestly sizing up the time and energy a potential project will take against other priorities and making a smart decision. This week, for me, it was deciding to defer building a vegetable garden until next year.

Will this project make me happy or add stress?

Growing up my summer highlights included camping and tending a large family vegetable garden, and I wanted to recreate this experience for my kids. But considering my weekly schedule, I just couldn’t figure out when I was going to research, plan and execute this task. I’d have to give up valuable hours of sleep or something that helps me relax and reset.

So, to avoid giving up these high priorities, things that make me happy and help me be my best, I have opted to defer the project for another year. Doing it now will not generate happiness and enjoyment for me. Instead, it will make me tired, frustrated and possibly resentful.

My mother had time that I simply don’t

Do I feel guilty about not giving my children a similar experience to the one I enjoyed growing up? Initially yes. But, I realized that growing up my family circumstance was very different. My mother, a school teacher, was home during the summer and had the time to make these experiences happen. In contrast, neither my partner nor I have summers off and have to be more selective about our time. Collectively, we have found a way to make camping happen, but the vegetable garden will remain a dream– for now.  Given the limited time available for projects like these, I am also going to look into out-sourcing it. This may be the most realistic way to get it done next year. I just have to make sure I budget for it too.

Read Tackling the Motherload, the catalyst of this series. Find the whole series here.