Giving up something that you have put alot into can be a personally challenging exercise. About 15 years ago I took over the family farm. I was raised on the farm, did most of the building maintenance since I was a kid, but I’m not a farmer. I can run a tractor, pitch hay bales, and deliver a calf but there is a lot that goes on in between those activities that make a farmer a farmer. It’s sort of the difference between knowing how the notes and playing the piano.
As the cows left the farm we tried some different options such as selling hay and raising horses. It was a better fit with my available time, but it lacked sustainability. There there was the issue of 200 year old farm house. The stairs to the second floor were just a few degrees off from being a ladder. My wife descended them on a couple occasions without actually touching the stairs. Then there was the ceiling height. My daughter at the time could actually lean into the ceiling with her head. She is four inches taller now. Basically I was dealing with a picturesque family heirloom, that didn’t suit my families needs. After 10 years of ownership and 3 generations in the family, I ended up being the one to sell. It was hard, but at some point you have to know when you can’t take something any further. This was probably my first real lesson in letting something important go.
About a year ago, someone offered me some money for one of my web properties. Much like the farm, it was something I had maintained and kept going for several years. I said no and went back to life as usual. After two more offers I finally decided to cash in. It’s not life changing money by any stretch of the imagination, but it really forced me to question where I was going with this particular project. Based on a variety of factors in my own life, it really was a distraction from other things. It would consistently generate a few hundred dollars but it was never going to be what it could be. It was a great property, but there comes a time when you have to evaluate whether it fits with where you are going.
Recognizing when it’s time to let go can definitely be a challenge. But if something isn’t supporting where you are going, it is probably detracting from where you are going. And once you can say goodbye to some of these things in your life, you can make room for something new.