I think my experiment worked.
I spent a week purposely not rushing around, over-cramming my daily agenda with more stuff than I could possibly get done in a day, and not dwelling on all the things I wasn’t doing rather than the things I was doing.
The world didn’t end.
What did happen? Well...in addition to the usual chores of cooking, moderate cleaning and keeping everyone else on their schedules...
* I did the food shopping
* Rearranged two dentist appointments
* Did some editing
* Signed a new contract with Samhain
* Prepared and priced a mountain of old junk for my garage sale
* Finished preparing two boxes of promo bookmarks for NJRW
* Wrote several thousand words on my WIP
* Did some laundry
* Re-caulked the bathroom
* Read two books
* Changed the carpeting in the foyer
* Enjoyed Mother’s Day
I can’t be sure I would have gotten more or less done the old way, but to be honest I’d say it came out about even – well, I doubt I would have done the caulking. I’ve been putting that off for a long time.
What have I learned? Things get done whether I worry about getting them done or not. I still function even when I’m not stressed.
I still manage to feel guilty about not being stressed or not worrying about things, though. There’s always that nagging doubt that if I don’t worry about things, over-schedule myself, do two or three things at once and obsess about not being able to do five or ten things at once, that somehow I’m not striving to meet my full potential.
I know that’s sick, but it took 40 years to develop that mind set. I doubt I can erase it in a week. Much like my diet, which continues despite my overwhelming desire to eat several forms of chocolate every day, I plan to continue this ‘experiment’ and see just how long I can go without mentally beating myself up over not maximizing every millisecond of my existence.
I’m concerned it might become too easy to relax instead of running my butt off, though. What if all this lack of self-imposed stress leads to laziness? What if my ambition dries up completely and I begin to aspire to spending long stretches of time doing absolutely nothing, and liking it?
I guess I still have a long way to go. But I’m going to keep trying.