Monday, December 16, 2013

Sober Day #48- Tomorrow is Another Day

I've always had an uneasy relationship with Time.  As in, There is Never Enough, and My To-Do List won't Ever Fit, and It Is My Enemy and Once I Start Something, I Must Ignore Everything Else to Complete This One Task.  The end result of this is that I would reach the day's end and feel very critical of myself-  I might have completed one or two, possibly three tasks.  But there were 5 zillion more on my list I hadn't even spend 5 minutes on.  And Play-Time?  Not even a background thought.

And this is changing.  The change is something I have noticed, not something I've done deliberately.
I know my research lab has been most productive when we are managing multiple studies at once.  We review them weekly, deciding to the Next Step and Who is Responsible (a la David Allen's Getting Things Done).  When we get stymied or blocked on one study, there's always another we can push ahead with.  I call this process Sheparding-  as in trying to get a whole flock of projects progressing in the right direction-  Some are always out ahead of the herd-  and if some are falling behind, we need to run back and coax them up with the rest of the flock.

What I noticed first about time was that it wasn't feeling so urgent to me.  That I could do an intensive half hour of one activity at home, then switch to another EVEN if the first wasn't completely finished.  You may laugh, but this was a revolution for me!

Once I noticed this, it occurred to me that I could use the Sheparding process at home also:  Looking at the constellation of all tasks (both chores and fun projects) as my herd (oops, stars and sheep, very mixed metaphors, sorry!), and push a bit on one, then a bit on another-  and reach the end of the day feeling satisfied rather than critical-  Thus eliminating, or at least modifying, another source adding to the heavy backpack filled with stress that led me straight to alcohol for relief.

As I was lying in bed last night, playing one last game of Candy Crush before turning off my light-  I found myself thinking back over my days, feeling pretty satisfied with the work/play ratio.  And instead of beginning to heap on the criticism for not completing more, I found that voice in the back of my head saying, with compassion and encouragement, Tomorrow is Another Day.

Two of yesterdays projects:  Wrapping Presents and Trimming the Christmas Tree:


  1. Compassion is good :) And you're ahead of me in the present wrapping dept!!

    1. I am usually a Midnight-on-Christmas-Eve wrapper, so this is a major change for me, lol!!


I'd love to hear about your journey, and hear your take on my journey. Comments are very welcome!!