The Week I Did Everything

Let’s just say this week has been a complete rush.

One of my recent posts, Time Challenge, prompted me to take a different look at how I was spending my time during the day at work and at night when I got home. It took a few weeks for it to really sink in, but this last week a real fire got lit inside me.

It started two Sundays ago as I was cleaning the apartment. I had just got back from a long drive with the ‘Check Engine’ light on. Like many of my other wonderful ordinary people out there, when I get stressed I like to clean. As I wash dishes I can feel the stress wash off; as I wipe down the counters I can feel the crumbs of disappointment fall away; as I swiffer the floors I can feel a plan coming into focus.

This plan was to do everything.

It started with the engine light – I have to make a plan to get this fixed. Who do I talk to? I’m not from around here so who knows a trustworthy mechanic? Should I call dad again and have him tell me one more time that things will work out alright? Do I have enough money in case this turns into the worst-case scenario?

Then it continued with money – Rent recently jumped $100 so I need to figure out a way to save more…what do I give up? What do I neeeeeed vs. what do I want? How do I just not spend money, period?

And finally work – I’m starting to feel comfortable with my job, and that makes me unsteady. So it hit me – DOOOOO something about it. How do I take this position to the next level? Where can I expand my skill set and get the most out of my day?

Thus began the week I did everything.

Honestly, I have never seen my planner so full since college. I was on the ‘productive plane’ five days straight, before, during and after work. Stretching and some easy lifts with my 3 pound dumbbells in the morning, getting a jump start on lengthening my to-do list at work and finishing off with some solid workouts after I got home. Oh, and I can’t forget cooking! Somehow I fit that into one of those days too!

Everyday was filled to the brim and I felt so successful and proud of what I had accomplished. By the end of the week I was fried – completely out of energy and in desperate need of sleep. (Have I mentioned I’m over two weeks coffee-free? Yup, living on the edge.)

So now the second week has begun. I found that after last week’s goal of, “Be the woman who does everything,” I was burned out. From this, I shifted the goal to, “Get the most out of every day.” I know that I should be doing that and I’m not saying I don’t, it’s just taking it to a different level – doing things that would usually be put off till the weekend. So instead of taking my time working out, I went really hard for a solid 30 minutes (squats and all) and got the most out of that time. Afterwards, or even before, I fit in an errand or to-do task. At work, I continued to actively pursue projects small and large, and feel inspired.

With the second week coming to a close, I find this whole experience to be a success. Not only the amount I got done, but each day felt full and I thankfully did not reach burn out status this week. Sure, there were errands I didn’t get to but now there are only half as many this weekend. More time to write, paint, and finish the final season of Hannibal (oh my Mads, you are such an incredible actor).

I haven’t decided on next week’s motivational phrase…No matter what I decide I’m ready to stay on the Productive Plane and stay off the Struggle Bus.