figure holding clock

Set That Clock!

I reset my clocks on Saturday. A simple action that added an hour to my week. If I did that daily, I might complete my annual goal list, the uber-ambitious January plan. Instead, Halloween has already crept by, and Thanksgiving is lurking outside my front door. (That’s Christmas skulking on the street corner. Don’t believe me? Go ahead, peek out your window.) The year is almost over and even my sensibly downsized June goals feel out of reach.

The time change made me wonder, what if I could add a few minutes to each day? Wouldn’t the ability to control time make an excellent super power? Imagine the possibilities. I could devote an extra hour to writing, research, or maybe even (gasp) fitness.

Of course, I can’t just randomly change my clock. I’d irritate my hair stylist, dentist, and sleeping partner. Besides flipping a clock setting forward or backward isn’t a true superpower. The hour displayed may change immediately, but my body clock does NOT reset so quickly. I wake up before my alarm rings. I’m hungry before revised mealtimes. (Believe me, those extra snacks WILL end up on my hips.) My evening productivity fizzles because my eyelids droop into tiny slits suitable only for catatonic binge watching.

So how close am I to reaching those goals? I’m not quite sure. It’s so easy to add things to my Evernote to-do list. I do know that my recent personal photographs remain unlabeled and unshared. My novel has taken a backseat to my website. I haven’t written the post about my Alaskan cruise. I need to make lefse (family tradition) for Thanksgiving. What? It’s almost time to send out Christmas cards? One additional hour WON’T cut it.

I admit I have caused some of my own frustrations. I tend to underestimate the scope of projects. Believe me, it takes a lot longer to make a quilt (let alone three-see this post) than you would think. Also, I overestimate my available time. Any interesting class, book, or event can tempt me to ignore my planned schedule. Inevitably, chasing those rascally rabbits disrupts ongoing projects and sends them into the dreaded death spiral of neglect. Coupled with my already full schedule of adulting, (laundry, meal preparation, showering, tooth brushing) I end up frazzled, disorganized, cranky and discouraged.

Several of the bloggers I follow seem to sense my year-end panic. Their recent posts encourage me to stop berating myself for the undone and celebrate the done. I took their advice and came up with the following items.

  • In February I started this website and have added over fifty posts.
  • I’ve read and reviewed thirteen books.
  • I studied to improve my tech skills, writing techniques, and author branding with online classes, webinars and books.
  • I relaxed and recreated at sporting events, festivals, lectures, plays and even a couple of trips including the cruise to Alaska. 
  • I finished two quilts, complete with bindings and labels. (Take that, last year’s goal list.)

Such productivity! (Ouch, I strained a muscle patting myself on the back.) I’m sure there are more things I could add, but this small sample does boost my confidence. I may lack superpowers, but I do occasionally win the time war through focused choices, disciplined scheduling, and intermittent profanity. There might be hope for me yet.

Some of my projects will take longer than one hour, one week, or even (sigh) one year. As Daylight Savings Time ends, I’m only allowed sixty additional minutes. I can either whine about what I didn’t finish, or I can choose something, anything (maybe focus on ONE thing?) to work on. Besides, there’s always next year! (Note to self: SHORTEN the list)

What goals did (or will) you accomplish this year? Share in the comments!

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