My roommate encouraged me to "get out" this weekend. While I lay half-awake this morning, I went through all the possible outdoor locations where I could go to relax. The Waterfront? Nah, I'd be a little too envious and regretful if I went there. The mall? The National Book Festival will be occupying all of that space this weekend. Fredericksburg? No, I need to be back by 6pm for a service event. The park? No, too many people. The marble benches in front of the Adams building? No, traffic can be kind of loud there.
Where, then? It makes me sad to realize that I don't have a spot outdoors where I feel that I can go to rest (like the NC monument at Gettysburg), but I've been thoroughly enjoying the breeze from my window today.
While I was heating up brunch today, I remembered something that my graduate school advisor had told me. It was around the time that I had been offered a part-time job, but I was nervous about the demands that this would put on my already hectic schedule. I was finishing my last semester of graduate school, was burned out, was working part-time as a teachers' assistant for two graduate level IT classes, and was very busy with my church. I really didn't want to add any more to that list of responsibilities. My advisor encouraged me that I could handle it all if I carefully managed my time. I had never really thought about time management before. I simply worked on a task until it was done. If a single email took me an hour and a half to compose, then that's how long I would work on it. He proposed that I set aside a certain time block for email work, for homework, etc. The idea seemed very practical, but I just couldn't see how I could set such strict time limits on my tasks.
I feel the same way today. I recently heard of a concept called "Executive Function." Does anyone know what this is? I still don't really grasp what it means, but it seems like it might relate? Some personal observations on time management, planning, etc
-I always arrive early for meetings or events - sometimes very early.
-If others make me late, I become antsy, anxious, and agitated.
-If possible, I try to go to a place early by myself rather than waiting to go along with a person who I know will likely be late. It's not that I have something against the person, I just feel better when I can arrive early and give myself time to settle into the new setting.
-I feel that a whole afternoon/evening won't be enough time to complete simple chores such as paying bills or doing laundry. I feel this way often, even though I usually do have time to complete tasks.
-I block off large potions of my calendar for events/chores and usually complete them early with time to spare.
-I'm not a good judge of how long something will take me or how long I will want to do something (such as visit a museum).
-I'm not a good judge of distance.
-I spend a lot of time randomly remembering "to do"s. If I don't have coming back to my mind (or written on a sticky note), I will forget.
-I often have a hard time recalling what I did yesterday.
-Having outstanding things to do at the end of the work day makes me feel stressed the whole day.
-I often chart out the events of my week in a list. I neglect to include any space for hours before 5:30 pm M-F unless I have a doctor's appointment during the day.
-I'm exhausted by the end of Sunday even if I've only gone to church.
-I spend a lot of time "unwinding" at the end of a day and at the end of a week. This takes the form of aimlessness, tidying up my desk, arranging my books, surfing the internet, staring at the wall, drinking milkshakes, actively avoiding chores even if they would only take 15 minutes, playing Tetris, listening to techno music, following my roommates around the first floor, etc. It does not involve movies, television, books, etc unless I'm reading something very simple or fascinating.
-I rarely schedule more than one event per Saturday.
-I rarely schedule any events for Sunday, except for church.
-I rarely schedule events during the week apart from weekly activities: Monday night Bible Study and my weekly cooking assignment. I don't want to schedule much more than this because I don't know whether I can handle more.
-I feel like a "lazy" person or a "weak" person because I have so few activities scheduled, compared to my roommates. In 2007, I wrote, "I don't work hard. I don't work hard at all! When I see my brother and sisters put in all nighters on a weekly basis..."