Monday Recap

You may recall, in the second part of my Contain Yourself post, I talked about experimenting with a new system this past week. Having finished the first week with it, I thought I’d recap here and see how it went.

A photo of my whiteboard and weekly list for the past week

My weekly list for 5/16-5/22. Written in multicolored dry-erase markers, of course. Color!

The list for last week had 8 items, some specific, some more general.  I wanted to:

  • Email one specific friend
  • Do a specific journaling exercise
  • Put up five posts on Witch.Words…
  • …and two posts here
  • Do the first lesson of How To Think Sideways (a novel-writing-career-course by Holly Lisle, professional novelist)
  • Incorporate some kind of physical movement (belly dance, DDR, Wii Fit, or yoga) every day
  • Do 3 “sessions” of jewelry-making
  • Three “sessions” of what I call self-work, which might include journaling on prompts, reading and taking notes on one of the personal development books I’m currently reading, or working on something like my Goddess Year Planner/Workbook for 2011 (yes, I’m still working on it.  Shush.  Don’t judge.)

When I talk about “sessions”, btw, I’m referring to my use of Focus Booster, a timer that counts down a work period, rings at the end of it and immediately begins counting down a break period, then rings again to let you know it’s time to go back to work.  It comes default set for 25 minutes of work and 5 minutes of break, but you can alter the settings.  I was using a 30-15 split for awhile, but I’ve gone back to the 25-5 recently.  I can’t recommend this enough if you have trouble with getting distracted!  Most of what I do takes place in some way on the internet, in my browser window, and before I started using this timer, I had the *worst* time trying to stay focused on writing a post instead of checking email or twitter or tumblr or whatever else was interesting at the moment.  Having defined periods of work and break gives me a way to remind myself that it’s work time right now, darling, you can check tumblr on your break, okay?

So.  How did I do?  Well, I did the email and the journaling right on Monday, and it was quite satisfying to cross those off so quickly after writing the list.  I blew my posting goal out of the fucking water – 6 posts on W.W over the course of the week, and while that’s only +1 from my goal, I was so much on top of things I was able to do a lot of prewriting and scheduling posts, which I normally don’t do, and it was nice and relaxing to not have to wake up and go “OMG MUST WRITE A POST RIGHT NOW” every morning.  I met my two-posts goal here, too.  I did the first lesson of HTTS, which…it was an experience, because I ran across some really nasty “YOU MUST DISAVOW ALL CONNECTION TO ANY COMMUNAL IDENTITY IN ORDER TO BE A REAL WRITER” sentiment – the phrase “victim mentality” came up in the context of advocacy groups and politics.  Which, y’know, fuck a whole bunch of that noise.  But I’m going to try again with weeks 2 and 3, and see if maybe this was a one-off issue.  I hope so, or else I’m canceling the fuck out of that subscription.  I did three sessions of jewelry work, finishing a necklace that had been hanging over my head (pun absolutely intended ^_^) for weeks, and starting and completing a rainbow-and-silver choker.  I did two sessions of self-work, so that wasn’t a totally-failed goal, but I didn’t quite make it, either.

Sadly, I completely failed at incorporating physical movement*.  I do my best work on writing and cleaning and overall concrete productivity in the morning, so I’m sort of loathe to interrupt that with dance or whatever, as much as I love it.  But immediately after lunch, I’m not wanting to move around too much, and often by the time I go “Hey, I should probably do something…” my fiance, Ozz, is about to get home from work.  And I’m weird about being seen doing physical stuff, and we live in a studio apartment, so him being home = I’m not doing anything of the sort.  Which means every day this past week I reached the late-afternoon point without having done any physical movement, going “Oh, damn it, it’s too late now, isn’t it?”  I’m not sure how to fix this.  Suggestions welcome!

Overall, I’m calling this first week of the new system a win.  It gave me structure and goals, a wider context for every day’s work, but left me plenty of flexibility on a daily basis.  A+ so far!  Now to figure out that pesky movement problem…

*I will not call it working out, because for me, “working out” carries nasty connotations of weight-loss and fat-shaming.  So I use “movement” and “physical stuff” instead, because those accurately describe what I’m talking about without the triggery-to-me connotations.

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~ by jadelynkaia on 05.23.2011.

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