Today I am grateful for organization. Without it, I would not be able to do the things I need to do for my body and mind, in order to be able to live like a "normal" person.
I challenged Linda to prioritize her daily goals so she wouldn't feel so overwhelmed and so she would have time for self-care.
I think it's only fair that I reciprocate and list my goals for today, and show how I'd prioritize them, and what I'd sacrifice to achieve balance.
Here, then, is how someone with a chronic condition would achieve a balance between mind, body, and spirit.
First, what is most important to me? Jeff, the pets, my health, my friends, my creative outlets.
Second, what are the five needs we all have that must be attended to on a daily basis in order to create balance in our lives? Emotional, physical, spiritual, intellectual, social.
Third, what things are on my "to do" list?
- Check dogs' AVID microchip registration to make sure current vet is listed
- Pick up Grandpa for PT
- Meet Jeff for weekly lunch out
- Eat healthfully and drink lots of water
- Gentle exercise
- Take medication
- Confirm automatic deposit with bank
- Update Blog
- Work on sweater neck
- Pack up Gem wheel to exchange
- Pet duties
- Back up computer - photos, movies - and file to disk
- Thank you to Nathania (sister) for birthday book
- Prepare laminated emergency cards for cars and bike (in case I get killed while driving or biking, so someone can call Dianna to care of my pets. If you will see my "100 Things About Me" list, you will see I worry a lot!)
- Fix dehumidifier which is rocking back and forth
- Set filing goals for accumulating pile of paperwork. (Too intimidated to actually face project, so will attempt to break it down into achievable goals.)
- Weed dyeplant garden and save seeds
- Type up my hat pattern; research a book to see why it came out funny, and fix it. Put in my pattern files.
Ok, so, that probably doesn't look like much to a normal person, but for me it is way too much for one day (remember, four dogs require four trips outside, a minimum of four times a day each, on leashes!) Luckily I cleaned the cats' and rabbit's litterboxes yesterday and started laundry last night.
Also, luckily, Granpda just called and cancelled his PT transporation, and I'd already cancelled lunch with Jeff to take Grandpa. Those had been some of the top priorities for the day.
What remains as a top priority? Taking care of me, taking care of the animals, family, friends, and creative pursuits. The rest is just "hafta'" stuff... but in the greater scheme of things, is not what I want my life to be remembered for!
Now, what is not optional? The next four things on the list, plus the pets. I have no choice about the exercise and eating well. If I don't take the time to get my body loosened up each day, and if I cheat and eat fast food, then tomorrow will be awful. Those things must come first, even if they are all I can do in a day (besides caring for the animals). You know what? Taking care of you should be your top priority, too! "If Mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy!"
I can combine brushing the cats with throwing some laundry in, as they like to get groomed on top of the washing machine. So there is some multitasking, and after my self-care needs, the pets are the next priority. It will only take five minutes while I'm down there and they'll get the attention they need. Plus it is healthy for me to interact with them. Not to mention, Maine Coon fiber for spinning! Five minutes a day goes a long way.
Then, I can combine mediatation and knitting the sweater neck if I don't watch TV but instead put on a relaxation tape or CD. My knitting would probably benefit from this! I know I would benefit from this emotionally - TV always riles me up, and is a waste of time (yet it's such a habit to just flip it on for background noise, which does not help the peace level in the house!) Doing these things will fulfill my creative and spiritual needs.
I could also combine meditation/relaxation with exercise if I did my Chi videos.
Or exercise with weeding the garden... but I don't think I can handle that today.
I can update my Blog, check the deposit at the bank, and check in with friends all at the same time while online (I've just done that.)
I can't pack up the spinning wheel until the new one comes, because I need the box! So that's off for today. Also, I can't weed the garden with my low energy today; I will ask Jeff to help me with that tomorrow, when he's home for the weekend. The seeds aren't ready to harvest yet anyway.
But I will remember to try to set aside time for a trip to the art museum to see the DaVinci exhibit, and possibly, if feeling really well, take Valentine to a Humane Society dog walk, where I hope he will win the Fastest Tail Wagger contest! Spending relaxing time with Jeff and the pets is as important, if not more important, than just "getting things done!" Seeing the museum exhibit will fulfill my emotional, spiritual, intellectual and social needs all at once. If we walk a ways from outdoor parking, that would handle physical as well, so missing this exhibit is NOT a wise thing for me! Likewise, the dog walk would take care of physical, emotional, spiritual (becuse of giving back to the Humane Society), and social needs as well. See, fun things can be good for you!
The backing-up-computer project is very important, but it is going to be a large undertaking. There is only a little summer left to enjoy, and though it would be easy for me to do this when Jeff was home on the weekend, I would rather spend this particular weekend with him enjoying the weather and relaxing. He has been working really hard and needs the down time. So that item will get postponed for a rainy day, as will the dehumidifier repair, for which I also need his help.
The emergency card is important, but it is highly unlikely that I'm actually going to get killed and need it, so that can get postponed unless I get my other things done today. I have to keep my worrying in perspective.
Sending Nathania a thank-you card will get done today because maintaining family relationships is a high priority in my life. And I can call the AVID chip place at the same time, while sitting at my desk.
The hat pattern can wait - it is not important at all, just a reminder. But setting filing goals is something I must do... I've been putting off filing of papers for so long that I have four hanging files full of "to be filed" stuff, and it's starting to waste my time when I need to find an old bill or medical record or receipt for reference. I will set small goals for myself, like "File for 20 minutes today," which is something I can physically and mentally handle. It will keep the job from intimidating me.
So, that's how I'd prioritize my day, in order to save time, meet the five requirements of a balanced life, and (most importantly) have fun. Because if life isn't fun, then what's it worth?
Will I get to acheive all these goals? Probably not. Heck, I didn't even get to take a shower yesterday (better add that to today's list, but after the exercising!) And that is why organization and prioritizing are so important... because when I don't get to get all these accomplished, I want to make sure the top needs - family, pets, friends, creativity, health - are the ones that are getting met. The rest is just gravy.
I hope you will be able to meet your five requirements today!
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