I checked off everything on the list last week. It wasn’t even down to the line – at 1400h on Friday all that was left was one kickboxing class. I hung out, caught up on some reading, watched an episode of Scrubs and then went out for dinner.
And I thought about how it was that I’d achieved this, how far I’d come since I wrote this post. Had I scheduled better? Been more realistic? Said no?
Yes, possibly all these things. But here’s the biggest one:
Things are coming together – submitting my first paper, getting this internship, nearly being done with school (next week I will complete the tedious seminar requirement – I can’t wait). But more than that, I’m full of ideas for this summer and looking forward to it so much. I’m engaged in my research – I know exactly what my next paper will be about and I’m looking forward to writing it. The classes for the course I’m taking are a little dull, but I genuinely enjoy testing so the assignment I’m working on is fun and I like the readings too. My fitness has improved too – I kickboxed (at 7am) Tuesday and Thursday, again on Friday and went to Body Pump Saturday morning. I’ve realized that with the amount I have on and the aggressive goals I have, I need to work out first thing in the morning because later in the day I start thinking “no I need to finish this before I go to the gym” – and that’s OK, because getting up at kickboxing at 7am is not as unpleasant as I’d remembered.
All that stuff – the organization, the lists, the goals. They help keep what I need to do in mind when I’m discouraged or overwhelmed. But I’m so excited by life right now I wake up every morning knowing exactly what I’m working on that day. And I’ll keep on top of them, because I do have a lot going on and it’s quite possible I’ll need them again soon.
But being happy, and feeling progress being made in every aspect of my life – that’s the biggest productivity boost of all.
Having thought all this through, I came across this article – The top 5 new Rules of Productivity – I’m not alone in this feeling! And next time I’m feeling overwhelmed, maybe instead of thinking “how can I be more effective”, I can just think about how I can be happier, instead.