Here’s the deal.
I really just want to go play. All the time. It would be the best thing ever to spend my day reading a book, writing a little, going outside to garden and hulahoop, coming back in for a nap, then some drawing time.
Spending time on making the house the sort of nurturing sanctuary I operate best in. Clean and bright and organized. And taking the time to do it gently, thoughtfully.
Which would be wonderful! But….
There are so many other things to do! And work takes up a huge chunk of time.
I end up feeling like I need to squeeze this massive todo list into just a sliver of the clock: vet appointments and find a new doctor and return shoes and prep for a new housesitter and grocery shop and run and run and run.
And I do it. I can run through a thirty-item to do list pretty darn fast. I can parse and figure out what has to happen, and do my very best to make sure nothing falls through the cracks.
But I end up falling through the cracks. After a few weeks that list looks harder, longer, less likely. I start resisting doing anything, even when I break things down into teeny tiny pieces.
Worst of all, I resent it. I resent all the obligations and responsibility and people that put things on my list (yes, I’m the only one that actually put them there…. But it feels like it should be SOMEONE’s fault).
I stop doing things. I’m drained, exhausted. And then different things fall through the cracks.
Somewhere there has to be a balance. A way to have a life of play and fun and sparkles, and still have clean clothes in the morning. A way to stop going in circles.
So what’s the answer?
Honestly, I have no idea. But I have a lead.
Identifying my core needs, and making sure they’re met is a big piece of the puzzle. Because if those aren’t taken care of, I don’t feel like I can relax.
Those core needs are a range of things. Making sure I spend a little time on finances once a week, so I know bills are all current, and money is in the bank. Keeping my work and personal inboxes as close to zero as possible. Doing a weekly project review to make sure I’m not forgetting steps, and to remind myself I’m making progress.
But there are other core needs. Getting naps in, whenever possible. Feeling like I’m in control of my schedule. Getting enough water. Writing every day. Creating or just playing with colored markers. Practicing the piano.
Knowing that I need to have those needs met doesn’t solve everything.
I still have to figure out how to balance them, how to make sure things happen without it turning into another overwhelming task list, or constricting schedule. But starting to think of situations in terms of “what do I need here?” is a good start.
And a good start is a whole lot better than continuing to go in circles.