to get my self off my blahs before, it occurred to me that maybe i wasnt managing my time well enough, or why would i go on spurts of activity then plateaus of inactivity just recovering from the intensity of the activity in almost predictable cycles, and feeling guilty and "not so accomplished" about it all.
so i surfed for "time management" guidelines and skills to learn about and acquire, and i immediately started on the first step recommended -- do a time management audit. in a time audit, you're supposed to just record your time and what you do with it, and how you're feeling while you're doing it. at the end of an audit period-- a week or a month-- you begin to be more conscious of where and how you're spending your time and you're supposed to point out several "time wasters" which could free up more time for you to do more useful things.
i did my time audit in only 3 days, first because i had to go on two out-of-town trips soon after, and my time audit record was stored here on the home pc, and i wasnt bringing my laptop along either. second, and most importantly, i think it has served its use in only 3 days of my keeping track of how i use my time.
it was an eye opener for me to see my self spending 16 to 19 hour workdays, not just working on my regular day job teaching and checking papers and consulting with students, but also on my freelance projects, as well as taking care of my three children and home and my self all by my self, with a little support from a maid and the kids themselves. and in those 16 to 19 hour days, i had very little time for "personal care" things, as most of my time were spent just working and producing output for other people! no wonder i feel so tired and need to recharge for many days after one of my intense projects are over.
instead of making me see where i was "wasting" my time, though, i began to appreciate my self a little more with my time audit. i could see that i was doing all the things in line with my major life goals, not wasting any precious second, even milking it and stretching it for all it's worth, doing two to three things multitasking at almost the same time.
i began to see that what i was wasting, though, were my precious energies feeling guilty about not finishing all that i've set out to do in a day, and bashing my self for being such a "failure".
i began to see that with my already full-packed, fully-used days, i was actually overstuffing my To Dos for a day, and whatever can't be fit into a day actually doesn't need to be done that day, that it could afford to wait for another day or two, and that the world won't end if i let them wait.
i finally began to see that i actually am a very good manager of my time; it's more of the good management of my energies that i need to practice more about...
i've already learned to set my boundaries with people long ago; and i've learned to avoid negative, energy-draining people.
now, it's time for me to focus on becoming more of my own best friend by letting go of guilt and self-bashing when i am not able to accomplish all i've set out to do in a day... to learn more self-compassion.... self-acceptance... and truer and fuller self-Love, at last.