Productive Whining

We’ve all complained in one way or another about procrastination. The difference between the complainers and the successful, is that at one point in time, the successful stopped complaining and started doing.

So without further ado, I will commence complaining, let off some steam (you can call me a bag of wind), then cease the self-pity for at least 1-2 months.

Goals are typically personal. They’re expectations of yourself and what you want to accomplish. I have a goal of reading twenty books this year. If I do so, I’ll be happy. Being that I’m still on book 1 out of 20, I’m feeling discouraged. Would someone else understand my frustration about this? Maybe, and maybe not. Another may aspire to read 100 books this year. Do I wish I could accomplish that? Sure, but that’s impossible for me. I’m pretty sure I know my limitations.

The Reality

But in reality, I don’t think we truly know all our limitations. I certainly don’t know all of mine. Everything seems so attainable, so easy, until you take a glance up from your to-do lists and fancy ideas, and realize there’s a colossal tidal-wave-99010_640tidal wave of aspirations that is seconds away from crashing down on you. Which is what happened to me this week. I’m a member of critters and have a self-imposed shrinking quota to meet. Because a critique of ~7,000 words takes at least 2 hours for me. I’m currently working with two betas. I’m still trying to finish the first draft of my mss.

That’s just the surface of my weekly routine.

I would like to get back into my artwork this year. I have a 1k piece puzzle I want to drown myself in. I loom. I read. I’m addicted to twitter and WP reader. I work part-time, full-time wife, homemaker, and I homeschool my two daughters. Note how I go from lowest to highest priorities.

To those who have the focusing skills of an eagle, I am jealous. When I get the time to sit down and be productive, that slot of free time basically isn’t there because most of it’s spent cleaning out my inbox and social media outlets. I have this bad tendency to think that these activities don’t take as long as they do.too-much

So I’m going to stop complaining and start doing.

From the wisdom of Holly Lisle : Those things that you control are your goals.  Those things that depend on ANYONE else but you are hopes, dreams, fantasies, or expectations, and it’s important that you realize that they can NEVER become goals, no matter what you do. If you do not control the means for creating and defining your own success, you are embracing fantasy.

Start Doing

It’s only 3 weeks into 2016. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the amount of projects and aspirations you want for yourself, start trimming.

Take out a pen and paper and make a list of all your weekly responsibilities, goals, and activities. Make a note of how long each activity takes. Do you notice that you binge on Candy Crush Soda for about 2 hours the night before you have to go to work the next morning? Oh wait, that’s just me. Well trim that down to 20 minutes. Or less. We all need to destress somehow, so some form of entertainment is imperative.

After you’re honest to yourself about how long each activity takes, start trimming. Start crossing things out. Postpone lesser want-to-do’s to next month so you won’t feel so crunched for time. And accept that you can’t do everything in 18 hours a day. I thought I could be the crit-superstar and do 5-6 a week. Yeah, sure. I don’t have that kind of free time. I love helping people out, but there needs to be a balance between helping others and helping yourself.

How do you destress? What do you do when you feel overwhelmed by all your goals and wishes?

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11 responses to “Productive Whining

  1. Good suggestions. It’s different for me every day since I have the demands of 3 girls keeping me from any type of ‘schedule’. I like your idea of actually writing down the responsibilities, now I just need to get a pad out and DO it!!

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    • Kids are certainly a handful! I give so much credit to all the moms out there, because parenting is undoubtedly one of the toughest jobs in the world. I hope my idea is helpful! I was able to cut down a few things from my list. Once everything’s organized on paper in front of you, you’ll feel much better! Good luck!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. When I’m overwhelmed with “stuff” to do, I usually end up on the couch and stare into the gas log fireplace. Even though it’s fake, it reminds me enough of the real thing which existed in the wonderful home I grew up in. Watching the flames calms me down. Sometimes this takes thirty minutes, give or take, sometimes an hour, sometimes two hours because I fall asleep which really helps!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sleep is indeed one of the biggest cures to anxiety. I’m a big supporter of it! Unfortunately, many of us are so overwhelmed and have learned to thrive on caffeine. But in the long run (ie by the end of the week), caffeine doesn’t give the human body the “hutzpah” it needs to be creative and problem-solve.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Email used to be a huge time suck for me, but I unsubscribed to a bunch of stuff I never really read, and I’ve cut my email way down. And unplugging the Internet cable always helps when I’m trying to write without being distracted by bright shiny websites.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s a double-edged sword! I’ve tried both methods: write, then emails, or emails, then write. Both have their downfalls: I get sucked into each activity (while wishing to do the other) and I rush one activity and not enough of the other. I’m all about balance, and the imbalance is so irksome. I will have to take your advice and spend the time to unsubscribe to some of my newsletters and subscriptions! Thanks for the tip!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve already decided I am going to do a “goals update” at the end of January. There are a lot of goals I made that are clearly not going to be met, but there are also some that I have already exceeded! So I’m going to trim down the ones I haven’t met and raise the bar for the ones I have 😉

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  5. I finally gave in and deleted all my Candy Crush games from my phone yesterday. They were synced with Facebook so I didn’t loose all my progress, but they got to be a 2 or 3 or more hour a day time sync. I’ve replaced it with just one sudoku app. High five for progress and productivity?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Definitely a big high five! (thank goodness for that syncing data in the cloud though!) Rearranging our habits is also a good method for productivity. I think that some of us get a little dull by routine, so switching things up, taking things out, can give us that mental “hey this is new, let’s do this!” excitement.

      But getting rid of those apps was a big move. Awesome!!

      Liked by 1 person

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