I don't know about you, but recently, we’ve hit a busier-than-normal state, and nowadays, my to-do list hardly ever gets fully finished. That’s a real life thing, right, not just a parent thing. I find myself, at the end of many days, not having gone through emails, not having finished the tasks I intended to for the day, leaving little bits here and there undone. I hate that. I am, by nature, a finisher, and usually lists (and finishing them) makes me happy, so this ultra-busy state? This is a little frustrating for me. But work is work, and work is never finished; life is life, and god only knows, life just keeps going like the energizer bunny; parenting is parenting, and we ALL know that just never ends (in a good way; really, I don't mean that as a complaint)... at the end of the day, though, it's hard to really just be ... done.
What to do, what to do.
Honestly, if I were to bump into a genie tomorrow, and (s)he were to grant me a wish, you know what I would ask for? Three hours every day, three magical hours that I had only to myself, on top of the 24 I am already allotted. These three hours would be mine to fill with stuff I want and need to do, used to get tasks completed, to sit and read, to paint my toenails, or to just hug my kids. They would be mine to use as I wished. No one could interrupt them unless I chose to let that happen. No one could fill them except me. No one could use them with mindless yammering, useless fretting or long-winded nagging. The tasks I accomplish count but during those hours, I can’t get more assigned to me. These hours? Only mine.
Selfish, I know. But my normal 24 hours are already so so full.
What to do, what to do
A couple suggestions:
- You have people that matter; I know you do. You have a family, you have kids, you have a spouse/partner/significant other/bestie. Your communications with them matter. Focus on making sure they matter, and that they know they matter.
- A regular 'discussion' (read: point of dissent) at our house is whether hours together is more important or if the quality of time is more important. To me, it's not just about being in proximity to one another, but rather about having QUALITY time together. Make the most of your precious few minutes, and make them count.
- Learn more. Feed your brain with good nutrition, just like you do your body. Your brain needs good food. Don't waste your time on fluff. Read and watch things that actually contribute to your total knowledge.
- Make a positive difference. Put your energy into leaving a mark, in a good way.
-Tech time. Your screens don't love you. Your screens don't need you. Put them down more often and look around you.
- Think about what you spend your time on. Remember, your time is precious and in limited supply. Spend your time wisely. What errands do YOU have to run? What errands do you HAVE to run? What can someone else do? What can go undone?
- Think about this: who will take care of you when you're old, gray, and potentially infirmed? Your job? Or your family? Don't wait too long to focus on the people that really matter.
- Think about your body as an environment. For your environment: pollute less. Be good for your environment. Take care of you so that you will be around for a long time.
- What do others think about you? What do you care? You know what really matters? Focus on you, what you know, and what you think. What others think is not important; you can't help on it, you can't change it, you can't fix it. Just worry about you. The rest will be what it will be.
You have limited time. As much as we want the genie to come around, that three hour gift is just not going to happen. So ... do what you can with what you have. Do more of what counts, and do less of what doesn't.