I struggle sometimes, as we all do, to maintain my momentum. I have a number of projects, or plans, or things to get done, and sometimes it’s a challenge to follow through.
Part of that is just who I am. I am a perpetual project-starter. I have all the enthusiasm and drive you could ever want — GETTING STARTED. It’s the follow-through I struggle with.
Some people would say that’s the Sagittarius in me. Well, I don’t know that I believe in that stuff, but I do know that I have always been this way, for as long as I can remember. I start, enthusiasm and interest wanes, I get distracted, I am horribly forgetful, and then my house becomes a place where projects come to die.
Lists help me with this. So does the internet. Both leave me with a feeling of accountability, that someone’s checking up on me to make sure I get things done. I need accountability.
You learn to deal with your shortcomings — in my case, my lack of follow-through. So making a list, or saying “I WILL DO X” to friends “out loud” as it were on the interwebs, helps me remain accountable.
Having a schedule helps. I find I am better at organizing my time when our daily schedule is predictable. Those two-three weeks between the end of rec programs and school for March break and the time that rec programs resumed was rough for me, for example. No schedule? No predictable times to do things and thus nothing gets done according to plan. Yeah, the schedule breaks my time up a lot, so I can’t devote maybe the longer blocks of time I would like to getting things done, but you learn to work around it.
I think it’s good for Stinkerbelle too. She has learned to adapt her routines as well, and so she knows that perhaps at X time of the day she’s going to need to have some quiet time so Mom can get a work project done. And then, once that block of time is done, and I’ve done what I said I’d do project-wise, we can move on to something else together. I’m satisfied that I committed the time to what I had to do, and she’s happy that now we can do what she wants to do.
So in the shorter term, we can get things ticked off on my lists. But in the longer term, it can be a challenge to get the bigger projects done.
I need a LOT more accountability for some things.
Like exercising. I committed myself to exercising in the morning, on workdays, and I am here to tell you that it is HARD to get up before everyone else and do the whole hamster-on-a-wheel routine and then get showered and done and greet everyone with a smile when they wake up. I am TIRED. But I use online programs to account for my exercise, and they have goals and levels to meet and whatnot, and that sort of helps. Sort of. But they’re anonymous, and so I don’t have the whole “somebody will KNOW if I DON’T do it” accountability thing going on.
Guilt is a great motivator. WHAT? I was raised Catholic. We LIVE guilt.
But guilt can also lead you to OVER program yourself until you find yourself getting a little snowed under. We’ve tried hard not to let that happen, but for awhile it was challenging. It’s especially hard where Stinkerbelle’s support work is concerned, when we are encouraged to enroll her in this program and make appointments with that specialist until we find ourselves becoming a little overwhelmed. You do what you have to do when your child is concerned, but sometimes, it takes a firm hand to determine what we really NEED to do versus what we COULD do. But we’re getting better at that, especially now that we have a really good in-school developmental worker to whom I can say BE HONEST DO WE NEED THIS WHAT DO YOU THINK WE SHOULD DO. And she does.
Where I have a struggle with this is with personal stuff. I try to DO ALL THE THINGS FOR EVERYONE. I can knit that! I can be there! I can blog today! I can mail those things! And then I find my name is Helena and, suddenly, I am in a Handcart. My threshold of tired becomes LIKE WHOA and suddenly NONE OF IT gets done. And then it all falls to pieces around that — housework is neglected and I go to bed too late and suddenly we’re buried under laundry and piles of knitting and paper that needs filing and AAAAUUGGGGH.
So it’s a matter of keeping a reasonable number of balls in the air at any given time. Not too many, not too few. And I am no juggler.
This past month has been a struggle. Too many balls! Too much unscheduled time! Not enough sleep! Work more to make more money! So it’s been a real task to make sure we are moving forward, at a reasonable pace, and getting things done.
And a lot of lists. A LOT OF LISTS.