For most of my life, I was a time-debtor. Always rushing through and to my next event, never having enough time to be present. I felt perpetually late for my life in general. I lived my life reactively, surviving from moment to moment.
This constant state of anxiety makes for a miserable existence. Especially when you then add into the schedule a demanding unreliable baby. True Chaos is a time debting, infant caring, and exhaustion making combo. I was always focusing on the lack and the scarcity instead of the abundance and the possibilities.
As I matured as a parent and then added writing to my schedule, I began to recognize my chaotic ways were inhibiting my creativity. My mental well-being as a mother and the future of my writing depended on scheduling some of my tasks to free up time for creating. My esteem relied on getting some “me time” in. The proactive processing this asked for was new to me as I’d never felt empowered or entitled to have goals before.
I began to just make a loose list of meals I could make for the week. And found that I felt less pressure for coming up with meal ideas and culinary masterpieces every night. Plus, by planning my food, I got to be in the mood for the food I was making.
After two years without one, I began using an editorial calendar for my blog posting. Scheduling the posts after they were written allowed me to let all thoughts of them go. I could stockpile my posts like a little blogging squirrel.
Whereas before I’d panic at an opening in my schedule thinking of all the things I needed to do in this tiny amount of time, I now proactively scheduled tasks for certain times, wrote them into my calendar, and was guaranteed a chance of accomplishing these things. I began to just do things when I thought of them and kept them off my ever-growing lists of things to do.
The immense relief I’ve experienced approaching my time management in this way has decreased my anxieties immensely and I’m feeling more productive and capable of larger tasks than I ever thought I would. I just finished reading my first book in three years. I manage to publish blog posts three times a week. And my house is fairly kept.
Reactively living without goals was a reflection of my low self-esteem and felt like surviving. Proactively living feels like self-esteem and fulfillment of my abilities and goals and dreams. It feels like hope. And all that it requires is a little extra time shaved off the top giving me what feels like hours of extra time at the end.
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Definitely need to take a leaf out of your organised book Shalagh. I just can’t get into the planning of blog posts but I absolutely see the joy of it. Such an important message to maintain our sanity.
Oh I get Druime. When you write the post, you do so because you have a thought that you are worked up about. And you want to put it out there. And it would feel like the passion would dissipate if it sat in the hopper for a couple days. I was right there with you for years. And then I realized that the post was still as good when they read it a couple days later as when I’d written it. In fact, it could often benefit from an edit. And it was just my expectations around the thrill that needed adjusting. I often can pump out a few posts in a day if I’m in the writing mood. And then I go back to them and add to them and schedule them. Oh and… I could always replace one of my scheduled ones if I had a burning issue I had to share today.
Think on it. Meanwhile load in an editorial calendar plug-in so you have it.
(ps read the former chaos junkie post if you haven’t already)