Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Time Management Tuesday: The Dark Side Of Temporal Landmarks/Units Of Time

I try to do what I call a "story/essay idea a day" thing in my journal. My theory is that creativity begets creativity, and that the more ideas I come up with, the more I will come up with.

Sometimes this works better than others. Sometimes I have long dry periods. Sometimes I have ideas, but it's just so inconvenient to open up the journal on my laptop, or I'm not home, or there's some other perfectly logical and legitimate reason why I can't get these thoughts done. And then they are lost. Perhaps they are out there in the universe, and they will go to someone else, because I did not accept them. Oookaaay.

And then there is what happened last month. I was coming up with ideas, but in a major impulse control failure I decided that I would start writing them down at the beginning of May. No idea how much I lost that way.

A Powerful Date, A Powerful Temptation

We all remember what temporal landmarks are, right? "...special occasions and calendar events (e.g., a birthday, a holiday, the beginning of a new week/month), which demarcate the passage of time and create numerous “fresh start” opportunities at the beginning of new cycles?" And we also remember the significance of beginnings? How we "get excited about our plans for "new" blocks of time?" It's going to be so terrific when the beginning of the year, Easter, summer vacation, the beginning of the school year, or the first of the month come and we get a fresh start. As our old friend Kelly McGonigal tells us, we think of the future as a wonderful place where we'll accomplish great things. You combine that with an upcoming temporal landmark that's combined with the beginning of a time unit?

Well, clearly you'd need to be tougher than I am to deal with that.

What Was The Problem Here?


Temporal landmarks and the beginning of units of time can work for us if they initiate a new surge of work, create enthusiasm. May 1st was the beginning of a May Days writing project for me. In the weeks leading up to it, I prepared.

I didn't prepare to start the story/essay a day project on May 1st. Instead, I waited for the temporal landmark/beginning of a unit of time to arrive.

Preparing is doing something. Waiting isn't. And that's where I made my mistake.

No comments: