Sometimes I feel like a hamster on a wheel, spinning each day rapidly under my feet: there goes Monday, Tuesday, on to Wednesday, whoa, Thursday already, how did that happen?
My job lends itself to the sensation of rushing time. As a weekly newspaper employee, I am constantly focused on forward propulsion. I work from home on Mondays, making phone calls and conducting interviews. On Tuesdays, I hit the ground hard at the office, cleaning up last week's mess, and beginning the physical layout of the paper. By Wednesday, I am juggling interviews, story writing, layout, and a thousand other tasks, trying to get everything done by the end of the night so we can "put the paper to bed." Thursday I wake up late and bleary-eyed, spent from the 15+ hour deadline day.
Thursday through Sunday is my own time, four days that I feel lucky to have. But why, then, do those days rush by almost as quickly as the three action-packed "work" days? I try to fit it all in, but it seems I am always running out of hours of the day.
I remind myself that it is a luxury problem to have so many things that I love to do, that I don't have enough time for them all. But somehow, that doesn't make the situation any more liveable; it just makes me feel whiney.
I tend to go full speed ahead for several weeks, cramming as much as I can in, and then I crash, cancelling appointments, sleeping for 12 hours straight, holing up in my house for two or three days without emerging.
Pacing is not something that has ever come easy for me. I jump in, swim until exhausted, and then barely make it back safely to the shore. I guess what I struggle with most is feeling like if I just managed my time better, I could keep doing everything, not have to give up anything, and wouldn't feel completely wasted every night as I sink into bed.
When I watch other people in my life manage much more demanding schedules with seeming ease, it doesn't help. Then I just feel, once again, like somehow I didn't get the same rulebook, or the proper coaching, something. Somehow, it always turns into a big ball of confusion, leaving me wondering if the problem is learning how to slow down, or figuring out how to speed up.
Any great wisdom out there?