I have a bit of a problem. I really want to do it all. I want to have all the time in the world for my children, be there for every pick-up and school play. I want to have a house full of animals, all well fed, vaccinated, walked and stimulated and I want to be able to do all the fun jobs that come my way.
When it comes to my house I want it to magically clean always; dishes washed and in the right place, the laundry mountain clean and put away in drawers. Plus lets not forget the always ready hot, nutritious meal that’s prepared for the 4 different dinner times.
As for work and travel, can I be transported to every awesome knit festival and show instantly so I don’t have to spend a day travelling in each direction? If I could avoid the week of exhaustion after big events as well that would be extra special.
I want to be able to contribute to every great magazine, fit my own books in on the side and have my yarn orders pack themselves and hop on over to the post office.
Obviously I don’t live in a dream world but somehow most days I get a balance that keeps it all running along. Sometimes it comes crashing down but not every day. The 2 things that can help are prioritising and getting help.
When I proioritise I make a choice. What do I HAVE to get done that day? Sometimes it’s work related, other times it might be an urgent appointment I need to get one of the children to. Then the second list is a ‘rolling’ list. I need it all to get done but it’s not time critical. This is my weekly list and the goal is have only a few items spill into the following week. Everything goes on this list; from appointments I need to make, work items I need to create or emails that urgently need to be replied to. It keeps me sane and allows me to not stress that I’m forgetting something. Phone apps are particularly good for time sensitive stuff, if I know somewhere is open at 9 I’ll have a reminder to make a call pop up at that time.
Getting help, you can’t do it all! Some collections are done by family, I have cleaner every couple of weeks, an accountant, editors, and a virtual assistant. I’m not superwoman. The best I can do is stay organised and find good people who can do some jobs better and faster than me. Sometimes finances don’t allow but when you can get help with the jobs that you don’t like and take you a long time.
Some things I just have to accept that I will lose out on. This really swings back around to priorities. You always have a choice, you just have to accept that you’re making that choice. We found out 6 weeks before the Edinburgh Yarn Festival that my youngest’s school was doing their school show while I was away. It is his last year in primary school and its a REALLY big production. I feel really weird missing it BUT I realised that I had a choice and the festival in this case was the priority. That stung but there wasn’t any way I would have made a different choice. Other times it’s between travel and very critical exams that kids are doing. In those cases the kids win out. It’s constant choices and decisions but we can’t do it all. I think realising this and that every one is a real choice makes it feel bearable. It feels good to be in control even if it’s only an illusion.
What kinds of choices do you find it difficult to make?