Going from Overwhelmed to Just Whelmed
Tricks for Editing the To-Do List
I often start the school year with best laid plans. I plan my writing like I would my syllabus, I remind myself that saying no is self-care, and I design my classes efficiently to minimize grading hell. This is going to be the semester that I have it all!
Yet, here’s the thing about my writing and productivity practice, dear reader. It is a practice, which means it’s all something I’m constantly working at but never really achieve perfect equilibrium. Yoga is also called a practice because it’s a pursuit that requires regular motion, but not something that the practitioner ever perfects. A practice necessitates…well…practice.
So, like the yogi, my best laid plans rarely come to fruition exactly as I envisioned them, and some days I fall flat on my ass. I get overwhelmed.
All of the time management strategies I preach begin to slip through my fingers. An article becomes more difficult to complete than I anticipated, and I need to devote much more time to it. I suddenly realize that I’ve said yes to far too many requests. My teaching assistant requires more support than I expected, and I end up doing more grading than I had planned. My furry best friend becomes sick, and I find myself spending unexpected time at the vet.
My furry best friend, Bodhi. Chief research assistant and cancer fighter extraordinaire.
Never fear, dear reader. I have a strategy to look into the storm, alter the course of the ship, and go from overwhelmed to just whelmed. It’s called editing the to-do list.
Here are the steps I take to pick up the red editing pen and use it for a good cause.