Give It to a Busy Girl – Reflections on Time

“Give it to a busy girl, and she’ll get it done.”

My mother has said this to me about 6 million times in my life. The expression is self explanatory, but what my mom actually means by it goes much deeper.

You see, there is an old Chinese proverb that I love (that not surprisingly, my mother also taught me) that says “time is a created thing – to say ‘I don’t have time’ is to say ‘I don’t want to’.” While this is a very simplistic view of time and business, it is actually not untrue when you think about it. On most days, I always seem to have time to scroll through Instagram. I always have time to look through my emails and click on the enticing one from Banana Republic informing me of (another) sale. I always have time to hit the candy bowl in the office. What I don’t seem to have time to do is go to the gym everyday, get eight hours of sleep everyday, write that check for the bill in the mail. Why? Because if I’m really honest, I don’t want to. I do want to look through fun pictures on Instagram so there is always time for that. Time is a created thing. Continue reading “Give It to a Busy Girl – Reflections on Time”

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It’s Time to Go Out On School Nights

For the longest time I did nothing on school nights. I was a teacher, so the term school night wasn’t even a metaphor. When your alarm goes off at 5 am, there really isn’t enough time between dinner and the sunrise to do anything. But since moving to the 9-5 world, when it could have gotten better, I actually think it got worse. I know I am not the only person to fall privy to the rut that is weeknights.

I didn’t realize what a rut I was in for a while. For a bit, it was simply that I was trying to play catch up with the clock. By the time I got home, I would be starving, and would immediately start cooking dinner. If I could wait to eat, I would run to a barre class real fast, then come home and cook. When all was said and done, it would already be 8 o’clock, and if I had a load of laundry to do or something of the like, I wouldn’t be finished until it was already time for bed. Who is going to plan to do something fun at 9 pm? At that point all I want is my pajamas, and maybe some gummy bears.

While totally understandable, this is actually a huge problem. It makes me hate the workweek. When you separate into “school nights” and “weekend” you realize that the amount of time that you spend on your actual life versus the amount of hours that you spend on your job, going to your job, and recovering from your job, is out of proportion.

I enjoy my job, and I am grateful for it. At the end of the day, however, it is honestly just my way to pay the bills. This isn’t a bad thing – not at all! I know that there are some people who genuinely find such joy and fulfillment in their jobs. I am happy for these people, and I truly hope it stays that way. For me, though, the awareness that my job is just the means for which I pay my rent helps me keep a healthy amount of distance, and provides me with the reminder that just because it is the work week does not mean that I shouldn’t be putting the happiness of both my family, and myself, first.

All of this is my long windup to my new theory: you should go out on school nights. I don’t mean to go to crazy bars or clubs and make it impossible to wake up in the morning. Far from it! I do think it is important, however, to make a plan for at least one after work activity. Putting something on the calendar holds you accountable for actually following through, and despite the fact that around 4 pm I am always thinking “why did I make plans? I just want to go sit on my couch” that is the exact reason why plans are necessary. Never once have I gone out on a school night and been on the way home thinking “man, a few episodes of That 70’s Show on Netflix would have been better than that.”

Go out to dinner with another couple, get drinks with an old friend, go see a movie. Almost every option that you could think of allows you to still be home by 10, so you will get plenty of sleep. The best part? When you walk in to work the next day, you will go in with a wee bit less stress because you will be reminded how full and complete your life is. It doesn’t matter what happens at work because you simply need to put in your hours. When you go out on school nights you are no longer “workin for the weekend.” Every day has the ability to be filled with just as much joy as the weekend. There is no rule that says that you don’t get to have fun on weeknights. We are over the age of ten, so we won’t get in trouble!