by Patty Lakinsmith
Mary Jane and Mary Ann's posts on this topic have gotten me thinking about this too, but it's not the first time. I went back to my blog archives and found seven posts with this theme. Maybe it's my Libran heritage, maybe not, but it's my holy grail to achieve that perfect attentional mix to all of the things that capture my desire and attention. It'll probably only last a moment if and when I achieve it, and then return to chaos, but at least I will have had the moment.
No, I haven't found the magic formula, but what does help me is to make lists. I am very easily distracted, and very unproductive when I've got lots to do and no idea where to start. Lots of lists of things I hope to accomplish, grouped by category: personal, art business, work, etc. Then, next to each one I put a priority number from 1 to 3, with 1 being the most important, and 3 being the least. I do this in an Excel spreadsheet, so then I can sort the lists from high to low priority. The trick then is to try to ignore the 2's and 3's while I work on the 1's until they're done. Nothing new in this, but at least the act of making the lists helps me to gain just a little ability to focus.
So what's it mean this Christmas? Well, our grown family has never really been into super extravagant gifts, and many of us have agreed to keep it low key, which is nice. Some years when I'm able I like to give charitable donation gifts, like animals to third world recipients through Heifer International. Then the choices are easy - does Aunt Mary want me to give a duck or a chicken, or maybe a rabbit would be better? Heifer makes it easy with online gift cards you can customize and print or send from their site.
But I do like to plan out a bunch of nice meals when we've got family gatherings, so there are menus to plan and grocery lists to make, and cleaning and decorating yet to do, and... Looks like the cards may not make it out this year after all. Oh well. Maybe an email would be just as nice, and maybe greener. Either way I'm not going to stress it.