“Time management! My only weakness!”: A True Story

It has been ten days since my last post. While that is not a horrible break (I had no set schedule for posts in the first place), I still find it unacceptable. I have now set a more solid (minimum) goal of posting every 3-4 days.

I know why it took me so long to make a post; my reason is similar to why so many other blogs have long breaks and eventually die. And hey, this blog will likely die as well, once its purpose in my life is fulfilled, or I’m dead, or the Internet shuts down in our imminent post-apocalyptic Mad Max future. Long breaks between posts, and productive writing days, can often be attributed to time management issues.

I am guilty of procrastination. I am a girl who tends to put too much on my plate, and who, after getting overwhelmed three-quarters of the way through that plate, disappears and grabs a beer – or worse, a shiny, new full plate. My struggles with anxiety and depression have a tendency to amplify this procrastination; if I fail at one thing or feel inexplicable low levels of energy, I tend to close myself in and be lazy, which I usually justify in the name of self-care. Don’t get me wrong: self-care is important! But I was not taking care of myself on Friday when I felt so stressed that I skipped going to my freelance gig and read over 800 pages of Kazuo Umezu’s bibliography (if you love horror manga, I recommend Senrei and Left Hand of God, Right Hand of the Devil). My gig was optional, but the only penalty was large: I missed out on a chance to earn money, which I desperately need. The guilt that I feel over this doesn’t make my wrongly-justified break worthwhile.

However, I would like to think that I am more productive than lazy. My most common complaint is that there are not enough hours in the day. I think we all feel this way sometimes. I thought that this feeling would vanish after I quit working a regular 9-5, but I was wrong. In fact, working a “flexible” (read: unpredictable) schedule is even more stressful. At least when one works a set schedule, they know in advance if they are able to attend something like a weekday evening event. If I’m lucky, I know my schedule 3 days in advance.

It is a month after college graduation, and I am beginning to have some semblance of a schedule. I was hired as an after-school teacher for one company and may be hired with another tutoring company as well. I have a secondary (tertiary?) gig doing freelance. I have lots of time to write, so I’ve been working on pieces for contests and applying for ghostwriting gigs. On top of all this, I volunteer for four organizations! Sounds great, right? My schedule would argue otherwise. The earliest that I can work at any of my out-of-the-home paid or volunteer gigs is 3 pm, which is my lowest energy time of the day.

I’ve always fancied myself as a multi-tasker. It is a term that people have used to compliment me on many occasions. But I currently feel like I am juggling way too much and accomplishing nothing.

After an experimental first month of 2017, I’ve concluded that my lifestyle needs some changes. I think I’m going to follow Rookie’s advice and focus on one thing at a time. I also need to adjust my sleep schedule so that I wake up later. But most importantly, I need to learn my limits. As is often the case, that which is most important is also the most difficult.

  • Current drink: Lagunitas Citrusinensis Pale Ale
  • Current book: Wind/Pinball by Haruki Murakami
  • Current audio book: The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Current music:  NIKK BLVKK – Last Light [Full BeatTape]

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