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Juggling Details

Posted by on July 24, 2013
to do list

I’m going to need more coffee & chocolate. 😛

So many details. So little time.

I have entered a season in my life where the details have increased to the point of making the population of Minnesota’s mosquitoes in the minority. I’m the type of person who tackles a project in a singular focus until it is finished. Maybe a little OCD, getting greyer by the minute. If you missed that post, you can find it here. I’m the bull-dog with a bite that won’t let go until it’s over. Broke a couple of teeth trying to pry my jaw open. I can’t live life like that. Nor can I just avoid all the little details either. Balance.

My first novel is set to release this fall, and the publisher has already released two short stories with another one on the way, if all goes according to plan. Who would have thought there would be so many details? There’s more here than planning a wedding and welcoming a new baby. I LOVE it. I know, I’m insane. But tackling a project this big, I’m having to learn how to juggle all the little different pieces. Editing, reading, writing, secret project, drawing, planning, analyzing, social media, marketing, etc. These are a project in themselves. There’s no way I can run through the edits of 90,000+ word novel in a day or a week. MAYBE a month. No, who am I kidding? I have a 4 year old and a 2 year old. Ha! I feel the grey hair coming on already. Balance.

This year I am having to learn my rhythm. How not to be pulled into too many different directions. Instead of fixating on one thing, I’m learning to do a little here and there. Instead of a bulldog, I need to be a bee. Not that kind of a B. 😛 Busy as a bee flitting from one flower to another, working here, there, making plans and lots of lists, and eating lots of chocolate. Ack! Just thinking about not focusing on one thing is making my eye twitch. Thus the chocolate.

So what say you? How do you tackle projects? Singular in focus like a bulldog, or are you more like a bee buzzing steadily from flower to flower?

13 Responses to Juggling Details

  1. Kassandra Lamb

    Great post! Love the bee vs. the bulldog imagery. I too am a ‘finisher’. Having so many irons in the fire at once makes me a little crazy at times.

    • jlmbewe

      Thanks Kassandra! That’s what I’ve been like this year: C.R.A.Z.Y. And I keep wondering if I’m forgetting something. Traditional lists just don’t cut it. There is light at the end of the crazy train tunnel, right? We do eventually get a handle on it, right? Please say yes! Ha! 🙂

      • Kassandra Lamb

        Uh, it gets easier. I’m not sure I’ve “gotten a handle on it” but it doesn’t make me as crazy as it used to. And you’re right. Traditional list-making doesn’t cut it. If I listed EVERYTHING I should be doing, I’d go back to bed and pull the covers up over my head. So I write a list for that day only, and have post-it notes everywhere to remind me of other tasks for other days. And I try not to be too obsessive about that day’s list.

        • jlmbewe

          Right! I know exactly what you mean. The list thing is kind of nebulous. Changes on whim, more of way to aid in focusing, prioritizing, and then you just have to shoot from the hip, roll with punches. 🙂

  2. Kessie Carroll

    Maybe I’ll be able to see your updates now! Blogger never shows me your updates. I sympathize with the to-do list! Good luck on the editing!

    • jlmbewe

      That’s great Kessie! Thanks for stopping by! It would be nice if all the blogging platforms had some kind of mutual ground that was simple and easy for all of us to connect. I’ve heard of some, but they aren’t well-known yet. 🙂

  3. Marianna Heusler

    I know what it is to be crazy busy – especially working full time and writing. I try to have one goal a day and I don’t turn on the TV until it’s accomplished. I tell myself that “When the journey is over, they’ll be time enough for rest.”

  4. Rhenna Morgan

    I love being busy too. In fact, when I have one of those days where I’ve completely run out of gas, my family starts to worry. Either I’m sick (and they might get it), or the end of the world is near.

    • jlmbewe

      Agreed! I have a hard time slowing down and resting like I need to. I have to be doing something all the time. But its good to be busy too. I’m not bored, that’s for sure! Thanks for commenting!

  5. M A Clarke Scott, Writer

    BEWARE the life of the bee. You can find yourself flitting from flower to flower, never really sinking your teeth into anything, never really accomplishing anything. I think today we have a tendency to be addicted to busy-ness, but if you’re not focussed and in control of those tasks/goals/deadlines you can fritter your life away and having nothing to show for it. Check out my recent blog post about NEUROPLASTICITY and how modern media and social networking is rewiring our brains so that our attention span is getting shorter and shorter.

    • jlmbewe

      I do agree with the flitting bee, always flitting but never getting anything done. My problem is when I have a project I want to get the WHOLE thing done right now. So I run myself ragged and crazy, while the rest of everything falls to pot. With a book coming out this fall, this is one of the biggest projects I have ever done. I can’t do everything in one sitting, or one week. I can’t focus solely on the book stuff, or I will neglect the other important things in my life like my kiddos, my marriage, my family and friends, my sanity. Ha! So I’ve got to space it out a bit. Anyway, thank you for stopping by and commenting!

  6. gretchenwing

    Great metaphor. I think I’m a hybrid: a bullbee? Is that possible? And yes, like you, bullbees need chocolate as fuel.

    • jlmbewe

      Thanks Gretchen! Yes, a bullbee, beebull. Something like that. 😉 Can never have enough chocolate. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

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J.L Mbewe - Author