I’m trying to figure out at what point I started measuring everything in time. It was recent — I didn’t think this way in college, or in my 20s or 30s. Somewhere after 40, I think.
A few months ago, I started calendaring as many to-do items as possible, as I took them on, blocking out time in the next few weeks to do them. If I couldn’t find the time, then I had to say no.
This afternoon, I had a conversation about a possible task, and the only real question I had was ‘what’s the time commitment?’ (3 trips to D.C., plus a few conference calls. Manageable, esp. since I have a sister in D.C.) I told them that I’d commit to it for a year; no promises after that.
Last night, I blocked out vast sections of my calendar — 7:30 – 9:30 every morning for writing. 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. + weekends for family & relaxation. Somehow, all the other work (and internet!) is supposed to happen between 9:30 and 5 p.m. on weekdays, which seems sort of impossible now, but I am going to try my damnedest to get there. (Okay, there will clearly be a little FB on weekends too.)
Getting there clearly involves staffing out a good portion of the work, which demands money. Money can buy time, but first you have to have the money. Right now, I am spending money I don’t technically have, betting that the time I get back will result in more money in the long run. There are limits to how long I’m willing to bet on that, though. I’m not sure what the limits are yet.
This is the year I try harder to invest in my writing career and in my family. The first question and the last question is where do I spend my attention and my time?