Years ago, when my mom moved from her home in AZ to CO, she cleaned out all the boxes she kept in the garage. I visited one day, and she showed me calendars from when I was in high school. Every weekend was a horse show. One night a week was 4-H. I played sports, so I had practice after school and games on Friday. I also worked at two ranches close to the house and at different restaurants in the small town where we lived. Looking back at that time, I wondered how I did all of those activities. This was in the 80s, so tech wasn’t around as a distraction or as a tool.
I look at my life now and see tech as a tool, not so much as a distraction. But what I see, even compared to 4 years ago, is a life that has lots of stuff in it and yet the overwhelm is real. This is something I didn’t feel back in high school where I attended classes, worked, trained horses, was involved in sports and clubs, and just felt that it was life. Recently, I’ve felt like things were going okay. I added a class at a community college for CEUs and dropped it two weeks later. Overwhelm hit me hard in time, energy, and especially in technology, which was the deciding factor.
The moment I decided to drop the class, and did so the next day, immense relief filled me. There are other classes I can take. A tiny part of me, who never had to drop a class or change her mind so quickly, seems to be taking up a bigger residence in my life. I feel more conscious of my time, my energy, what I can do to the level I’m used to functioning at, than I have before. And that’s a good thing, right? I really wish she was around when I got involved in a relationship that didn’t work out, yet I stayed in way too long. Or that job I took and stayed for months, even though the side effects were horrendous.
Maybe with the years I’ve logged on the planet, a bit of wisdom has soaked in. I feel this when I write. Though I’ve tried other ways to create, I know what works for me, and I’m content with that process. I finished my WIP. The next step is to type it. I’ve kept my writing streak going, and my happiness level with daily fiction writing has grown. Knowing when it’s too much, and that I still need those CEUs, I’ll look for classes with fewer hurdles. Understanding what works in my creative process means I have boundaries that support my writing. What do you do when your calendar is too full or your tasks are above your ability?