Well it’s finally come to this. Not only do I need to use a calendar, but my life is so busy and multidimensional that I really need to have a planner.
A planner. You can’t hear my voice as I say those words, but if you could, it would be a creaking, gasping sound, better suited to the radio storytelling medium. An inhale where an inhale should not be.
My goals are ambitious and I realized that the best way to make regular, steady progress, is by planning out every single day between now and 2015. You can’t really do that with a mere calendar – at least not with the amount of work I have to do. There is a certain amount of effort that I need to make, daily, on certain tasks and projects, to make sure that everything progresses. A planner. I got a planner.
In the process of this epiphany, I also realized that I had to cut some things out of my schedule. I need to be focusing my energy. I have to do this from time to time…I end up with too many projects and have to streamline in order to actually get anything done. The executions begin, tomorrow morning. I’ve already made my list of what stays and what goes.
I hate calendars, but I like organization and I like systems. It’s kind of a contradiction. So is everything about my ADHD. I’m the stupidest smart girl in the world! So tomorrow morning, I’m going to sit down with a mechanical pencil and begin with entering my kids’ schedules. But we’ll come back to that.
Tonight, I went to Staples and headed for the aisle marked “Planners” and oh my freaking gawd. OH MA GAWD. There were only 8,000 different kinds. And all of them cost more than I wanted to spend. I guess you have to pay the price when you prefer a “weekly/monthly” versus just a monthly. Whatever. So I looked through literally every type of planner that they had in stock. I nearly passed out when I saw the ones where you can schedule every tiny parcel of your day into 15 minute increments. Jesus H. Popsicle. Then there were the ones that I was immediately drawn to, the artsy, colorful, whimsical ones, with swirly retro designs on them. Not only were they free-spirited on the outside, but there were a hot fucking mess on the inside. I don’t need a bunch of shit drawn all over my calendar and planner pages. No. Nope. Insert vision of my brains exploding splattering everywhere.
Now, overall, I was completely disappointed, because what I realized what that I wanted one that was bright and fun on the outside – but serious and seriously boring on the inside. I need gridlines in my calendars, not just numbers floating around like they’re stoned. But NONE of them fit these criteria! None! Apparently one is allowed to be either corporate and boring, or artsy and fartsy, and not a combination.
And…there were, I don’t know, like 20 different kinds of planner, and then they had each type in different sizes. It was overwhelming. It was the PLANNER AISLE. I had to Facebook Chat for help. It didn’t help much because my friend was like “okay, so how is this gonna go” and I was like “OMG THERE ARE SO MANY”. That’s about as far as that got. And then I was that person talking to themselves in the aisle “ooooh, that one has pears” and “oooh, paisley, I love the 70s” and “WHO THE FUCK SCHEDULES THEIR LIVES IN 15 MINUTE INCREMENTS?!” And can you imagine…someone out there has the job “planner designer”. Planner Designer. Right there on their name tag. I mean there must be, why else would there be 20 different styles in 60 different sizes?
I finally found one that I liked in terms of size, and that I LOVED in terms of its internal boringness. The cover…meh. But at least it was navy blue with subtle sparkles, and not just navy blue. I can deal with this. And if I have to, I guess I can just decorate it.
I have come up against this type of challenge before. In my last trimester of college, I was basically desperate to finish my undergrad degree before I hit the “let me the fuck outta here” wall again and was tempted to drop out again. I pulled a classic ADHD boner and in addition to my regular course load, in order to finish in that one trimester, I added a full course load of correspondence courses to my schedule. 30 credits in ones trimester. It was completely terrifying! That was very motivational. But to make it work, I had to get extreme with my organization. And oh, I did. I literally planned every day of the trimester on a calendar/planner thingy and I followed that goddamn plan every day. I nearly flunked out of astronomy because I was so tired and kept falling sleep in the planetarium – but I wrote a paper every day, and did all of that reading, and I did it. I completed my credits and I graduated. I was really proud of myself. It was a pretty great achievement.
I think I’m a little worried right now…because I have some factors (key people) in my life that aren’t totally predictable. I’m afraid to make a plan and then have to change it and then it might keep changing and then my plan is fucked up and…I either need a plan, or I need chaos, but I think I might freak out if my plan gets all effed up. I’m making a plan based on goals. I don’t want to be disappointed and I hate having to keep changing my focus. I just want my plan.
I was going to start using the planner tonight. I really like systems, after all. But…I was nervous. Then I opened it up again to see how much I liked the inside (I liked it! Nice, clean little boxes!) I got some cheese and crackers. I thought about it some more. I got tired.
I’m going to bed. I promise I’ll crack that sucker open in the morning.
I promise. It’s an ADHD promise, which means that it’s really sincere, but I’ll remember in a week…or something…haha…