Disappoint & Offend

Today’s Quest2015 prompt comes from Michael Bungay-Stanier, author of Do More Great Work. In it he asks:

Who are you willing to disappoint or offend or upset or abandon… for the sake of the Great Work that’s calling you for your best 2015?

I have to admit, I’m not proud of what comes up for me with this question, because the truth is, I have been disappointing, offending, upsetting, and abandoning pretty much everyone at some point or another for years–and rarely for the sake of great work. But that abandonment I have dealt to others, is almost always about self-preservation–about time alone to regroup and rebuild after a busy day, about not being able or willing to add one more thing to my plate, even if it’s a wonderful thing with a wonderful person, about knowing that I can’t do it all and therefore I need to make hard choices that some people may not understand (especially people who aren’t far-spectrum introverts).

Because for someone like me who isn’t quite as resilient as a lot of other folks, doing great works is something I can’t even really think about until after I do the mundane work of feeding myself,and sleeping, and not getting sick. and calming the exhaustion and spin of just being out in the world with other people.

So really, for me, this question isn’t about who I am willing to disappoint, it’s about who I am no longer willing to disappoint or offend or upset or abandon after doing just that for decades. And that person is me. As for the rest of the world, those who love me, understand. Just like I understand when the people I love do the same to me.