Measuring Success by a Carpool


This slightly beaten up best selling book has been in my own bookshelf since about the same time as its release in 1997.

On. My. Bookshelf…
Unopened and untouched by me.
Beaten up by moving, and dogs, and baby-slobber
NOT from being read.

“DON’T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF… and it’s all small stuff.”

Why is it that I am just now beginning to figuring this out? My only conclusion is that everyone needs to figure these things out for themselves in their own time. And some people take more time than others.

Last week I came to the silent revelation that somewhere along the line – I have started to occasionally sweat LESS.

The Last Minute Carpool

“Come-on, let’s go pick up your buddies.” I said to my middle child as we backed out of the driveway. A wide smile appeared across his face – he hadn’t realized that he would be riding to soccer practice with his friends!

He hadn’t realized this because the carpool had only been planned minutes ago when I realized that it would be virtually impossible for me to get my son home from practice without help.

These days last minute feels like the norm.

I’m a planner.
I’m an a list maker.
I’m an early-is-the-new-on-time, multi-tasking doer.

All characteristics which I used to take pride in – however characteristics which now seem to provide more challenges then advantages because: It is physically impossible for me to plan to be everywhere, on time, while also victoriously completing my to-do list.

I take a great sense of pride when a last minute carpool successfully comes together. A good (albeit last minute) carpool, is one of life’s necessities – greatly helping to ward off unnecessary stress.

What is Success?

This Thursday was no different then this Wednesday, last Tuesday, this week or last month, (really… any given day) except for the fact that I was calm.

We weren’t running late. But we definitely weren’t early either.
I hadn’t planned my afternoon. But it seemed to be working out.
My to-do list was only partially complete. But at least it was partially complete.

I still had work to be done, dinner to be served and possible temper-tantrums and meltdowns to avoid.

Yet on this day, during my unplanned, last minute carpool I felt successful. Successful because somewhere along the line I had stopped measuring success by checks on my to-do list.


Sitting in the odd silence of my car on the way home from soccer drop-off, I couldn’t help but let my mind drift back to work, dinner and possible meltdowns.

Trying to keep the worry at bay I thought back to my day’s successes. If your’ gonna sweat the small stuff… at least find a good carpool. Right?

Small successes can sometimes equal BIG relief.

Leave a Comment: Have you ever noticed how much better a day can be when you just are able to stay calm throughout the chaos? What helps you to get through a crazy day?

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4 Responses to Measuring Success by a Carpool

  1. I think I’m getting better at it. No question though – I’m much better at it when I don’t have 100 outside things pressing in on the family. Which is much easier said than done, sometimes!

  2. Tatum Buckholtz says:

    Don’t sweat the small stuff and it’s ALL small stuff! In theory, I know this is true and I need to embrace it more but it’s so much easier said than done.

    Perhaps I should dust off my copy as well!

    • Kate F. says:

      It is fun to “dust off” something and re-read (or re-see) it as an adult in a different stage of your life! I am finding that my perspective changes a lot over the years! (I say YES! to dusting your own copy off :))

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