I called my first time management book 168 Hours (have you read it??). That’s the number of hours in a week. All these years later, I have come to believe — anew — that “weekly” is the right lens through which to view time.
Life is good but challenging right now. The baby has responded to his sleep-training-enforced earlier bedtime by popping up in the middle of the night and staying up, often for an hour or more. (Last night he woke up only once in the middle of the night, but he fought going down in the evening for…3 hours). I am managing the older children’s virtual schooling. Everyone’s activities have started back up — for which I am profoundly grateful — but this means navigating a schedule of practices and driving (looking to hire some help there, but that’s a process too).
I keep wanting to create a master schedule: a spreadsheet I could consult that would say exactly what goes where for the next few months. I would get ahead on all my work projects. I would get ahead on some exciting personal projects (more on that later!!) But baseball games (3 each weekend) shift around. One-off things come into the schedule. Each day I look up and it’s almost 3:00 p.m. and the kindergartner needs to come home.
Now, I know that some people advise taking life day by day. In truly rough circumstances that might be wise. Outside pure survival mode, though, (and I’m no where near that, thankfully) day by day has some inherent issues. For instance, I prioritize running in my life, and currently I’m running about four times per week. That’s not bad, but if I looked at life day by day, I’d feel, on approximately half of my days, like I hadn’t done this thing that was important to me. The 168-hour perspective is more holistic.
So I am taking it week by week. I don’t have to figure out the schedule for forever. I will figure it out for next week, scheduling what needs to happen, and trusting that I will be planning again in another week. I will figure out each future week as it comes. Sure, the anxious part of my brain can see that next week will be a 3-day workweek for me, and it starts nudging me that I need to work farther ahead but…if I have to do everything in 3 days some week I will. If I do what I set out to do this week, I’ll start the next week better than if I drop the ball.
Do you plan a week at a time?
Photo: Fall! Let’s do this!