Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Now that my book trip to Chicago is over, it's time to get serious about a couple of important endeavors. No, no, no, I don't mean cutting off my questionable long hair and losing five pounds. I don't mean resolving my insomnia by developing a Tylenol PM habit. I don't mean having a third baby, going back to work, or training for a marathon. I don't even mean preparing for the holidays. (Side note: our family is neither traveling for nor having company visit for Thanksgiving. Relatedly, I have not yet purchased nor thought about a turkey or any other Thanksgiving-dinner groceries.)
No, no, I'm talking about a.) obtaining all my continuing education credits for my psychologist license, and b.) writing that book proposal. Both of which involve prodigious amounts of time.
I recently found a special deal where I can take a boatload of home-study professional psychology courses from my computer, all on sale for a limited time. If I work really hard at it, I could possibly obtain all--or nearly all--my required credits for one low price, between now and next November. But it will require me to sit in front of the laptop for hours each week reading tedious course materials and taking tests on things like "Clinical Aspects of Traumatic Brain Injury" and "Methamphetamine Addiction."
Much more exciting, I still have this book idea I'm dying to work on, plus a reference book about writing book proposals lent to me by my awesome writer friend Lori, who is patiently waiting for me to WRITE THE BOOK PROPOSAL ALREADY. (This woman is a superstar who had TWO books published during the same month earlier this year, people. TWO.)
How to find time for these things, people? My children aren't in school all day yet, and they don't nap anymore. I don't have any "free" chunks of time during the day long enough to get anything like this done. Most evenings, I try to turn out the light by 8:30 so that, given my early alarm clock, my husband's snoring, my toddler's periodic night awakening, and my subsequent insomnia, I can stand a reasonable chance of getting seven or so hours of sleep. Weekends, I'm usually trying to balance a bit of relaxation with family activities and the normal household chores.
Argh! Does it ever end, this desperate quest for "free" time for personal pursuits, professional goals, or hobbies? Are there ever enough hours in the day?
Here's how the considerations have played themselves out in my mind so far: Give up running? No. Give up watching "Glee"? No. Sleep less to stay up late and work? No. Give up writing this blog? No. Give up Facebook? Sigh.
Yeah. You get where this is going. While there are some things I'm not willing to relinquish, I suppose it's true that I "waste" an awful lot of time surfing my favorite sites online, keeping up with Facebook friends, reading Salon.com and the best mommy-blogs, skimming Babble essays and FameCrawler, checking out the latest headlines at the New York Times website. What would my life be like without all that screen time? Probably a lot less "busy" and perhaps a lot more meaningful.
Maybe I'd even get my license credits done and my book proposal written in record time. Maybe it's time for an experiment.