Yay for no more CSETs!

Since about 11:00 am on Saturday, I’ve been quite content. The last week has been fairly stressful, with midterms, big projects, and CSETs constantly looming. Interestingly, completely out of my normal form I was possibly even over prepared for everything; I stressed out right up until I actually started taking the test/planning the project/writing the paper, and then I instantly realized that I was totally okay. It was a pleasant reminder that I can actually get things done and be responsible, semi-functional adult.

I had some vague ideas of what I wanted to do after the big tests were over, but I ended up mostly vegging out and doing some minor creative work – like hand-making bows for my niece’s gifts, which I got a lovely thank you call from that made me smile (there’s just something particularly fun about “I love you aunt Rachel!” in an adorable 3 year old’s voice). But I’m okay with it; no big things due this week, and if I do say so myself I deserve some off time. I’ll be back to the grind tomorrow, but this weekend I’ve enjoyed myself.

For youth group this week we did more guerrilla raking – popping up at people’s houses to do yard work. It was more interesting since one of the kids was working through some grieving, and had some physical side effects, probably from lack of food. Grieving stuff is uncomfortable enough for me, because everyone handles it differently and I often don’t know the person well enough to know if they want to be alone or have someone be with them, be distracted or talk about it, etc. Adding in the physical stuff, it was hard for me to balance coddling versus being too harsh and/or cynical. By the end of the time she seemed okay, but it got me thinking about how to handle some of those situations.

Also on my mind is how my friendship is progressing with Heather. I didn’t notice it as much until I had some time away from her, but when she and I are together I tend to get pretty monopolized by her. I don’t mean that to say that it’s her fault or something like that, it’s more like I tend to gravitate and talk almost solely with her than with other people. I love the girl, and I love hanging out with her, especially since I don’t see her as much any more, but I’ve gotta work on that.

Finally, on a more positive note, I’m working on getting better about my follow-through. I think I’ve improved a lot in terms of situations involving other people, but in terms of things I commit myself to that are individual I don’t do a great job of being discerning. Often, it’s in terms of projects. There are so many interesting and creative ideas to try, and I whenever I get bogged down in a longer-term project I’m apt to distract myself with smaller, newer, more “exciting” ones. And then I feel guilty for not finishing what I started. Recently, I started writing down future ideas and limiting myself to 2 to 3 at a time. I’ve even crossed some off without doing them at all, not because they’re bad or I don’t like them. That may be great for someone else to do, but especially if it’s not already in my sphere of common projects (sewing/quilting/knitting/minor amounts of jewelry-making) or something that I would have use for, or want to make for someone else, what would be the point of spending time on it? That in and of itself weeds out a lot of things.

I’m also working on this for my personal productivity. I tend to fall in the trap of expecting too much of myself, like that I’ll go home and study and work on projects from the moment I get home from school until I go to work, or that I’ll get everything done super early. Those are good things to do, but trying to do that all the time just can’t work out. I need some healthier expectations for myself; it’s a bad sign when I feel guilty for sleeping more than six hours or having some down time.

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