What To Do First?

I’m having another day when I don’t have the time to write, but I need the clarity that writing gives me.

My “to do” lists are so long that I don’t know where to start. I actually have three lists going right now – one for work, one for my personal life, and one for races. Right now, work involves an article due next week and a bunch of short fuse deadlines. I’m working for two firms instead of my usual one, so I’m writing every last thing down to make sure I don’t lose track of anything. My personal life, though wonderful, feels scattered because I’m trying to keep up my training through it all and because I have things on my to do list that have been there since last June – like printing photos from my last Ironman.  And it’s hard to remember which flights, hotels and cars I’ve booked for which races, so races get their own list. Sometimes it feels like I need a personal assistant. Add that to the list of things I want when I’m rich enough – fresh flowers daily, someone to do my hair every morning, and a personal assistant.

This past weekend, while I worked, I could feel myself becoming overwhelmed. I was tempted to leave the office on Saturday and give myself the day to do nothing with the hope of returning Sunday with a fresh head, but I knew myself well enough to know that delaying my tasks wouldn’t free up the air around me. I would carry the heaviness with me all day and all night. So I worked, but before I did, I made myself another list because apparently I needed a fourth one.

  1. Breathe.
  2. Pick one small thing you can do quickly and do it. It’ll feel good to knock something off the list.
  3. The minute that’s done, tackle the thing that you’re dreading most. Any bit of forward movement on that will make you feel better.
  4. Remember that it will all get done. Somehow it always does.

I did work most of Saturday and Sunday. I got a ton done, and yesterday, I finally felt like I made huge strides on the big thing I was dreading. Today, the clock on my deadlines continues to tick. I’m continuing to make forward movement, and I’m reminding myself of this fourth list again.

I like being busy. I am grateful that I have so much work, as I know people who have none. And I’m thankful that I get to travel on Friday back up to Iowa to see Dave and my favorite farm family. I’m incredibly lucky. I need to remember that before I do anything else. Yes, I am incredibly stressed. But mostly, I’m incredibly lucky.

4 thoughts on “What To Do First?

  1. Pingback: Not Enough Shovels? | It Started With Coeur d'Alene

  2. Pingback: Sleeping on the Mountain. | It Started With Coeur d'Alene

  3. Pingback: A Track Workout. | It Started With Coeur d'Alene

  4. Pingback: Nine Months. | It Started With Coeur d'Alene

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