Lately, I've been thinking about time management.
Obsessing about it more likely.
I've read articles by time management experts advising me to track my day, writing down what I'm doing every fifteen minutes. By doing this, I should be able to ascertain where it is possible increase productivity and decrease waste.
Yet I rebel against the idea. It defeats spontaneity. It assumes wasting time is a bad thing when, in reality, I believe wasting time is a way for us to recharge our batteries, to help creative thoughts flow. I resent the idea every minute of my life should be planned, productive, managed.
I need to do just that.
In the opening of About a Boy, Hugh Grant's character talks about units of time. He goes through his day ticking off units, allotting each activity a certain number until it's time to go to bed and sleep.
Lately I've been awake for 18 hours a day. In that time, I'm at work or traveling to or from work, for a total of 12 hours. That leaves me with six hours. In those six hours, I've been trying to cram: getting ready for work, watering the garden, feeding the chickens, making dinner, stories and baths, cleaning the house, laundry, keeping up with my blog, keeping up with my social life, playing with the kids, writing paid articles, and writing a novel.
Four days a week, I use more units than I have.
Three days a week, I'm off. Those are the days I promise myself I'll catch up.
Except, I can't seem to do it.
So things suffer.
My novel languishes until the Saturday I can sit in front of my computer and pound out a couple thousand words. Feeling uninspired is not an option.
My laundry pile is taller than I am and I'm afraid I lost Elizabeth in it for all of twenty minutes.
My house is clean, but not neat.
My garden is taking over and the chickens are planning a coup.
My blog misses a day or two a week, the paid articles get written, but I'm not going to win a Pulitzer.
My friends and family don't get shorted because I'm a firm believer in relationships with people being more important than anything else.
And the time I waste sitting in front of True Blood or John Stewart or reading a book? I need that time to recharge.
I also need to go to bed earlier, but that would delete some of my units.
So, here I sit, pondering time management and wondering...
Is there a pattern, a certain way of using my units, that will result in a balanced, productive, semi-relaxed life without giving up the things I love to do?
Or am I dreaming?
5 hours ago