Skip to main content

Breakin' it Down

At my core, I am someone who like structure and a good plan.  Don't get me wrong---there are days in the summer when I will wake up early and decide it is a great day to go to the zoo.  There is much grumbling as I wake everyone up and inform them of my fantastic idea and let them know we are leaving in 20 minutes.  Breakfast?  We will eat on the road - breakfast sandwiches (that gets them moving a bit faster). I start packing bathing suits and lunches, sunscreen and water bottles.  Spontaneous trips often turn out better than planned ones since I know I WANT to go and there feels like there is less pressure for the day to be "like I planned".  It is an "adventure day" so anything can happen and I don't put expectations on the trip---ok well fewer expectations.

 A couple of years ago we went on a7 day Caribbean cruise out of Tampa - me, my husband and two of the boys.  I planned out each day of the drive to and Florida, the stay with my mom before the cruise and every day trip while on the cruise I had painstakingly researched for the best deal and most unique experience. I was determined it would be the best trip ever because it had to be (it was so expensive, a big big deal for us to take a vacation like this and the first time in 8 years I had taken 2 weeks off in a row!)  Whenever anyone suggested a change in the itinerary, I could feel my chest get tight as I watched my well laid plans slip into the unknown.  The unknown is a scary place for me.  The unknown can't be controlled.  You don't know what to expect in the unknown. I truly felt responsible for everyone's happiness and if things didn't turn out (one day due to a storm we could not go into a port and had to scrap our day trip) I was so worried and stressed out that everyone's resulting bad mood was somehow my responsibility. I lost control of our trip and was incredibly stressed hoping that our next excursion day would be 'perfect' to make up for the missed one. To cope, I chattered incessantly about how beautiful the ship was and how lucky we were to even be there.....   When we returned home---I was exhausted from trying to hold everything together.

So for awhile know in therapy, I have been encouraged to create less structure in my day.  To find "unstructured" time to just sit with me.  To "take it easy---rest and recover". The challenge is, I have so many things I want to do--and I feel I need to do since I am "home doing nothing" (those are my words in my head) to prove my worth and value (paint, clean, garden, clean out cupboards, etc.) that this lack of structure in a day has resulted in me continuing to jump from one project to another--then back--then on to something else--then back --then forgetting something to the point where I have not sat down for 6 or 7 hours.

Sometimes there is little to "show" for that time (cleaned out cupboards and washing all the beds and making them, starting dinner and cleaning out the fridge and pantry, pulling dandelions --someone might think I did nothing all day by looking around--including me!)  What is missing is time for reading, exercise, baking, knitting, watching TV or a movie, having coffee with a friend.

My psychiatrist and therapist have finally offered up the white flag on the whole "don't schedule yourself" deal.  It is who I am and fighting it when it is this ingrained into a person is practically impossible.  So how do I make it work for me? 

We have been talking about creating a schedule for my day....either scheduling myself time to "do projects around the house" and then letting the rest of the day be me time (other than regular dinner and lunch making and such) or scheduling in "me time" in the day.    I am not sure which one will work best so I may try them both and see.  I have been talking about trying this for a while but just haven't done it......time to break down my day and see what feels right.  Schedule will be posted tomorrow so I track my progress here.

Comments

  1. Came across this proverb today and thought of you and your journey: 'The obstacle is the path'... maybe your docs are right - scheduling your time is who you are, so embrace it but remember that the quiet times, the 'Me' times are part of the journey too - just as useful, maybe even more 'useful' as cleaning out the cupboards?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yes, it is a hard one to remember as I keep looking for a finish line! LOL Which of course means I feel like it is a race and at some point I will be able to relax and be all done. Each moment is part of life. "All done"= other side of the grass....

    Thanks for the reminder. I can always use these--daily---LOL!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Shame is A Full-Contact Emotion (Brené Brown)

It is a cool outside this morning and I have on my fluffy red robe as I sit outside and watch the birds flit back and forth from the fence to the feeder----arrogantly tossing aside imperfect sunflower seeds to get to the good ones.

The discarded seeds, some empty, some full, punctuate my deck, waiting for the squirrels, who will later claim this easy buffet.
I am still reading Brené and The Gifts of Imperfection.

Feels a bit like learning a new language ---I see the words---I hear the words---but the meaning is so diffuse...I need to read and reread and sometimes, even read out loud to make the words stick

It is hard work.

And while the smooth cover of her book lies balanced on my palm, seemingly weightless, many of the concepts have a density that knocks me flat on my ass ---like a large medicine ball.
CATCH THIS ONE!Oooooooof!I am down.

Eyes wide, trying to catch my breath, wrestling with the weight of hefty concepts like shame, authenticity, wholeheartedness, courage, compassion, connect…

Taking a Lesson from Work

Maybe it's because I am on this spiritual journey, or maybe it is because I have time to read blogs and cruise the web, but 2014 seems a bit obnoxious so far.  
Really IN YOUR FACE. Ok so it is not quite like this, but...... ....picture in your mind a saloon type town in the old west. 

Got it? 

Ok so now add a slick looking guy standing up on a wooden crate, surrounded by a crowd of people.  Beside the crate is a table, and on it are dozens bottles.
He clears his throat, throws out his arms, and announces:

It's a new year folks! New year.....new YOU! How would you like to tackle your SPENDING/DRINKING/SELFSABOTAGING/PROCRASTINATING/UNDEREDUCATED/OVERACHIEVING/UNORGANIZED/OVERWEIGHT/GREYINGHAIR/DULL SMILE/SMOKING/BOUNDRYSETTING/DEPRESSED/ANXIOUS/EATINGDISORDER/OBSESSING/INTERNET-DEVICE ADDICTION problems....
RIGHT NOW!!!
AND IF NOT, WHY NOT? OMG you think!!! (well OMG probably wasn't around then but...)  

OMG I think I heard a few things in there that I need to fix!!!!  Actually, I KNO…

Lesson's From Frozen and Taylor Swift

"Let it go....let it go...." and "Shake it off...shake it off."
I alternate between these two borrowed mantra for this time--- when the world seems too loud and bright. Even my clothes touching my skin is too much.  I yank off my sweater, and hop step out of my pants while walking upstairs to my room after work, finally able to breath once the edges of sleeves, cowls of turtlenecks and waistbands of tights no longer feel like burning, scratching sun burn.   
My skin feels too tight as I try to keep myself together in this package that is required to carry out my daily tasks.  
"This is not my circus. These are not my monkeys."
"Your lack of planning is not my emergency."
It is far too easy to get caught up in the drama of things that are so divisive---as you try to separate yourself by thinking it is not your problem or it is not my fault or I am better than this or I don't need anyone - when we should be connecting to each other in a supportive …