… and on the other hand, I have a glove.
This is how my brain works … when there is something I really don’t want to do.
Need to do laundry? Do the dishes.
Dishes needed done? Pay the bills.
Lawn needs mowed? Make critical phone calls.
Phone calls need made? Work on a database.
Database needs work? Work on the book.
Important point. The thing you do instead has to be equally valid and important. Maybe more so.
It took me literally years to figure out that the reason some things in my life do not get done is simply because I do not want to do them. And what I really need to do is just say “No”.
It is a complete sentence.
I made this realization back in the post divorce days, which I recall because of the office I had when it dawned on me.
Up until that point I was always late for things.
Mostly because I tried to do too much. Which was mostly because I didn’t want to do what really needed done. Or I had allowed my schedule to be dictated by the demands of someone else who expected me to set aside my scheduled events to suit them.
That particular day I had scheduled several things to be done … all before an important meeting … which I could skip and be fine with it. But I had said I would be there.
Most of the things that would cause me to be late had to do with giving someone else a ride … to the garage … to the store … to the dry cleaners … to another office. And there were the things that needed done in my office.
I thought I would try something radical. Leave in enough time to actually get to my meeting. On time.
It started by talking to the person in need of a ride. Who was every bit as bad at trying to fit 40 minutes of work into a 10 minute time slot … and equally unwilling to do what he didn’t like to do.
We made one helluva great team. Seriously.
“If we don’t leave now, we will not have time to stop at that other office.” Then I went to do more of my own work. My real work. Not some other work instead.
Ten minutes later “If we don’t leave now, we will not have time to stop at the store. It’s already too late to get to the other office.” Then back to do a few more things of my own.
Some minutes later “If we don’t leave now, you won’t be able to get your suits from the dry cleaners in time. And I am leaving in ten minutes.” Then I did something truly amazing.
I did not start a twenty-minute project with only ten minutes left.
Instead I began closing down and packing up and basically getting ready to leave … in time.
“Well, I am leaving … now … and if you want a ride to the garage to get your car now is the time.”
A stunned partner looked up at me, then down at his watch, then back up at me.
I know. It was not typical Holly. But do you know something? It felt really good.
Doing what I had said I would do … and not doing 99 other things instead … and not being dictated by someone else’s assumptions on my time.
Oh. I arrived on time at my own appointment.
I’m hardly ever late these days too. Seems you can teach an old dog new tricks … sometimes.
But sometimes I write blog entries about something altogether different than I had planned … because I really needed to sort through the recovered pictures of personalized license plates … or something … and really didn’t want to do it.