Soulful Sunday – Week 41

A place for reflection, thoughts, and opinions. 

We all have the same amount of hours in a day – we all have the same amount of days in a week, yet it seems like some people have more than the rest of us. Those super-productive people we see online, or may know in real life, make us feel like we aren’t using our time well.

I see them, and envy them. I envy their lifestyles, and they way they always seem to be happy and productive. But there is a danger in pushing ourselves too far, in forgetting to set out priorities and letting go of things that we simply don’t have time for.

We all have things we want to get done, I know I do. I want to build this site up, write my books, get the most out of my degree, read all the books on my TBR, as well as take time to do the things I know are good for my mental health – yoga, journaling, preparing fresh food, keeping my flat tidy and clean, sleeping… All the lists go on and on.

So how to set our priorities? The answer? I’m still trying to work it out. Usually I look at things with logic, what is important right now? The problem I’m having at the moment is that everything feels important. So, how do I decide?

Here’s my thought process

  • University is right now, it’s time-bound, it will come to an end
  • Writing my own projects will still be there in three years, and I am going to be writing as part of my degree
  • My website is the thing that’s giving me the most good feels right now
  • I need to read in order to write well, and not reading makes me sad
  • I need to sleep, cos tiredness makes me do things not well
  • The better my mental health is the better my output will be

Which leads me to the conclusion that my mental health needs to come first, which means a massive recenter of my life. University needs to come next, because it’s a once in a lifetime thing. I don’t get a second chance at it. And writing my own projects…sadly, writing has somehow become the lowest priority, because it’s the thing that will wait.

I’m not sure how I feel about that.

Silver lining: as part of my degree I’ll be writing out of my comfort zone. I’ve already written two poems, within actual standard forms, which has frightened me forever.

I’ll still look out for little slots to put in working on my pirate story (currently untitled cos I stole its title for my blog) and Elondria, but they can’t be a priority.

Which then leads me to Nanowrimo…I need to make a decision on that.

I think working out my priorities in life is going to be a work in progress.

~Viki

 

6 thoughts on “Soulful Sunday – Week 41

  1. Figuring out one’s priorities is always a work in progress. Especially since they change from time to time. In some ways, my priorities one year ago, or even as little as 6 months ago, are different from the ones I have now. And I’m OK with that, especially since I feel so, so strong about what I’m working on right now. It does mean a substantial cutdown on my writing and blogging time until it’s done, and even afterward I may have to re-evaluate certain things… But right now, I think I’m handling all the priorities as best as I can.

    Regarding your situation: I think you came to the right conclusions about what’s most important right now. Yes, it’s going to hurt that you won’t have as much writing time, and that may or may not be what you want to hear from other people. But both university and mental health / self-care are non-negotiables at the moment… yet that doesn’t mean you won’t have any time to read or work on your own writing projects.

    What might help is to look at your schedule in terms of blocks of time. It’s something I’ve been doing every Sunday for the past few weeks. I spend a few minutes on Google Calendar blocking out windows of time for work on the Big Secret Project, dinner, appointments, self-care, time with friends, etc. I’m not necessarily restricting myself in terms of how much time I’m spending on each item. Rather, I give myself a realistic amount of time based on past experience, and it helps me keep track of my priorities, tasks, and other commitments. And so far, it’s helping me stay on top of things – which I need very much right now! *lol* Plus, it prevents me for overdoing / spending too much time on something, which has been (and still is) a bad habit of mine. And in some cases, it can help you find blocks of time you didn’t realize you had available, or how much you can accomplish in, say, 30 or 45 minutes. Maybe something like that could be useful for you, too?

    1. Also, my friend Leanne Sowul has been writing about that very topic at DIY MFA for her past couple posts. If you’d like, I can share a couple of her links with you here. Just let me know.

      1. I think that sounds helpful. 🙂 Thank you.

        1. You’re welcome! Here are links to both posts.

          Writing For Life: https://diymfa.com/community/writing-for-life

          Seven Life Lessons Learned From Tracking My Time: https://diymfa.com/community/lessons-learned-tracking-time

          1. Thanks for these. 🙂 Both are interesting reads – gave me food for thought.

    2. Thank you for the reply, you have some kind and wise words. 🙂

      Prioritizing can be difficult, and it’s honestly been difficult to not just get frustrated that there aren’t enough hours in the day. But you’re right, and it’s nice to hear from someone that I’m making the right choices. Time blocking is something I’ve been trying to play with, but I think you’ve hit on how I’ve been doing it wrong – I’m not being realistic enough and allowing for travel times and the inevitable hiccups that will and do happen. I think I need to look at it again with a fresh perspective.

      Ooh, Big Secret Project – that sounds exciting!

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