Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Lighting Fires

I don't seem to be able to accomplish anything lately unless I push a deadline to its extreme. Then I astound myself with what I can do in such a short time frame. I question the quality of what is done when I don't allow myself the time to finesse, edit and tweak the final product but "done" is better than "perfect". Right? Well, that is what I keep telling myself anyway.

This week has felt harder than it has had to feel. Why? Because I pushed another deadline to its limit. I finally got another hard job done, sent off and it is out of my hands. And it feels marvelous. Why in the world can't I do the same thing a week in advance? Because then I would expect perfection. That's why.

I could not put a cover on our family's "book project" until I made a deadline for myself. Once that was done, I needed a plan to accomplish my mission. Suddenly the impossible felt possible, simply because I had to incorporate the words "good enough" into my thinking.

It's hard to settle for "good enough" when you know you can do better. Thus, I think I have created a monster. The entire month of December felt like I was putting off big jobs until I had no other choice than to just do what I could do and get it done.

I put off Christmas cards and my daycare yearbook project until the very last day available to me. I threw together another project as I was running out the door. Another project got tabled until the last possible moment and it happened. I ran out of time. I couldn't even call it "good enough", I just had to call it "quits" and make do with what I had given myself time to do.

It is nothing about having not enough time. I have more than enough time. I have too much time. I have so much time I should be doing "better". I am settling for "good enough" because I don't have the motivation for more than that.

I blame one day weekends when one day is honestly more than I need when I fritter it away so completely. A one day weekend without looming deadlines is enough.

Christmas is almost three weeks behind us and I still have the feeling that I'm not quite ready for it. Last week, I finally accomplished all I had set out to do before Christmas. Now this week cropped up on me and it contained deadlines that had to be met. More cards need to be written, gifts to be given and I'm not doing "any of the above" until I have no choice to scribble words onto a card as I'm running out the door and call it good enough.

I have been setting fires under myself so I accomplish a bare minimum and call it enough. I suppose I am getting my work done one way or another. Am I proud of what I'm putting out there? No. But I'm getting it done.

I am not too pleased with this new side to myself. I'm glad to know that when push comes to shove, I can push through. But why on earth do I keep waiting until I get shoved into action?

It feels so good to cross big things off my eternal to-do-list. Why can't I get addicted to that feeling and try to attain it quicker and more often?

I guess for the moment, I won't question why. I'll keep pushing through, I'll keep setting fires underneath myself to force myself into action. I just hope I don't get burned as I play with fire. It's bound to happen.

My first step must be to simply catch myself up to where I want to be. Then I find some motivation to stay one step ahead of the game. The more I have to do, the more I can get done. Which is unfortunate because I think this line of action is what contributed to my high level of procrastination.

I'm writing in circles here. I don't see my answer. I just know I have two more cards to write, a few blog posts to update and then I'll be caught up to date. By tomorrow I should be submitting a piece of writing that has some substance. And I'm already running behind again.

And there is a minor bookkeeping clean-up task I must tend to tomorrow as well. Between working with "numbers" and "letters" I seem to be maxing out my expendable energy resources. At least that is what I am telling myself. I think my bigger problem is, is that I spend my day dreaming of the moment I get to crawl back under the covers and sleep the night away.

I don't think it is tiredness that is the factor, as much as my enjoyment of turning off my brain. I think I must be wearing it out.

Maybe I'll feel caught up by the weekend.

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