12 Dec


Today is 12/12/12, one of those auspicious repeating number days. Our Twelve by Twelve group was lucky enough to be able to schedule our challenge so that the last pieces for this year, 2012, would be revealed today. Our theme was Sweet, and we’ve created some lovely interpretations, from the sweetness of sugary candy to the sweetness of a group of friends creating together. Check it out

As the year draws to a close, I’ve been thinking about an overarching project for next year. I’ve never really done one, and I’m not sure I want to add more commitments to my to-do list, but I’ve been thinking that a simple drawn (or otherwise) self portrait per day would be informative. I shy away from studying myself and I’m not sure if that’s because I don’t think I look like I do in my mind, or if I have a larger distaste for self reflection as that would infer a follow-up with self improvement. Last year I had tried to draw myself regularly as a way to get to know me, but I didn’t stick with it. Perhaps stating in public that I will do a 365 day project will keep me accountable and I will do it.

I’ve been thinking about these things as I sit and stare at the ceiling, or my computer, and wonder why, with all this time that I have (my kids are, after all in middle school and leave me to my own devices for six hours a day) can’t or don’t I accomplish more. I stared at piles of Christmas gifts today, incapacitated by my inability to stick in and wrap them so that I could package them so that I may get them to the post office. I did finally decide how they should be wrapped, and found appropriate outer packaging, but had dithered too long and didn’t have time to stand in line at the post office before the kids would get home. So I thought about accountability here. I thought about my to-do lists and my ambitions and the things I want to do but are lower priority than the things I need to do, or should do. I thought about Getting Things Done. And I may have thought up another 365 day project. What if I wrote, every morning, what my aspirations for the day were. Then, I could write what I actually did each day — to include time spent staring at the ceiling, or the computer screen, or picking up the dry cleaning. I suspect the lists would be quite different, though I’m usually happy if I can cross one thing off my to-do list each day. Maybe by the end of the year I’d be better at reconciling the aspirational list with the reality of what I can and do accomplish each day.

I won’t blog daily lists (or portraits for that matter) as I know that would only encourage me to spend more time at the computer. But, occasional checking in would help keep me on track. Now, to start today (and end on 11/12/13), on the next solstice (the 21st), on my birthday, or at the start of the year?

4 thoughts on “Time

  1. You are reminding me of Sam in E.B. White’s “The Trumpet of the Swan”. He kept a diary–a daybook about his life. It was just a cheap notebook that was always by his bed. Every night, before he turned in, he would write in the book. He wrote about things he had done, things he had seen, and thoughts he had had. Sometimes he drew a picture. He always ended by asking himself a question so he would have something to think about while falling asleep.

  2. Can I just copy the bit about staring at the ceiling, the lack of accomplishments and the post office and post it directly on my blog? I’m in the same spot.

  3. oh ooh oooh!! I believe in the power of numbers! I hope you started yesterday so you can end on 11/12/13!!!!
    I also like your self portrait idea…may have to steal that one…

  4. Accountability — man, I’m thing about that, too. I’ve been trying to keep lists of all the things needing to be done and hoping to get done and it has helped me stay focused and prioritize. It’s also made me feel better about staring off into space because I know I’ve gotten things done … it’s just not always a lot. But I think a realistic view of who I am will help me feel better about my days of lackluster “performance”. I think taking a break is just sometimes who I am and what I need and that’s got to be okay … provided I don’t become a slacker, which is unlikely.

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