This is the first week I try to get everything together: Snortblat; seeeekrit comics project; application work for PhDstudies; excercise; family life and bread winner work. I’ve given myself a two week ”lift off” to not overwork myself the first thing I do, now I have to find the balance betweent the different areas of my life. As usual it started with a bang; hubby told me yesterday (while I was contemplating a silent day at home to adjust to full time work) that he’d forgot to tell me our son has a day off from school today. Scrap uninterrupted computer work, rearrange chores and the result is that I’ll now spend the afternoon sandpaper shelves instead of drawing. Such is the life of a mom working from home – and I need the shelves since they will hold my stuff in the study.
The one thing keeping my work together is my diary. It holds my to-do lists and my analysis of the previous day of work. I’ve change my rewards from sprinkles to silver pendants, though. Silver pendants are easier to store and less fattening. As an aspie I’m reluctant to add more devices to the planning (they tend to clog my thinking rather than help it), but yesterday I kicked my filofax into gear again. That is, I bought a new insert for it since my old one ended July 2014. A calendar is the closest you come a crystal ball in time management; it allows you to look into the future and predict what will happen.
Yes, yes, I know – the predictions are not that remarkable. It’s not a miracle to predict Hyderabad ComicCon or Stockholm ComicCon when both the events have homepages where their dates are clearly displayed. But the predictions are still important; you need them to be able to save up money (if possible) for the trip, arrange living quarters and plan your activities on the convention. I missed the annual bookfair in Gothenburg, a trip I planned for six months, because I forgot the specific dates and missed to arrange somewhere to stay in time. The annual bookfair is huge, trying to arrange lodging in the last minute is impossible. The only place I found was a camping spot for rv:s next to a fun fair. Since I don’t have a driver’s license or an rv I had to cancel my plans in the last minute – despite having money and travelarrengements in order. I have to admit I was tempted to rent the space and sleep on it in a sleeping bag.
All of this could have been avoided if I had used my filofax and put in the notes ”time to arrange living quarters” at the right dates. (You can do this using a smartphone or tablet calendar too, I just prefer paper.) So, intent on putting the life lesson to use I went down to my local book shop and bought a new insert. Then I went on to write in all the conventions and fairs I want to go to, which are far more than the conventions I can afford to go to. A part of me will always think magic will shower me with the funds for everything I want to do. However, the part of me that is more down to earth quickly added a colour coding system: every convent is written in orange pen – the ones I can attend gets filled in with a darker colour. Other dates, such as when I’ve booked the laundry room, will be filled in in other colours.
There are several ways to use a calendar, but none of them will work if you don’t look in it. If you have several appontments every day this tends to be a no-brainer since you are forced to look at your notes every now and then. Me, on the other hand, only have appointments every other week, and this makes it easy to forget the filofax altogether. This is the point where my time management plans have failed in the past, and I’ve taken the time to ponder my own habits; what kind of routine would suit me and make sure I take a peek in the calendar regularly? The current answer is that if I do it in connection to writing my diary (which also would be logical in other ways). As my life changes I’ll adjust the routines – but that goes for more than my calendar habits.