Sunday, February 8, 2015

A Typical Week’s Schedule

After last week’s gripe about crazy weekend schedules, I seem to be enjoying an ideal weekend.  I got my errands done early yesterday, I came home to plenty of time for cleaning, relaxing, and getting some necessary (paying bills) and extra (a project I’m working on) things done.  As stated in my post last week, this isn’t typical, so I have been enjoying every minute of my weekend.

Since writing last week’s post, I have been very mindful about where my time goes—what I’m doing, both at home and outside of the house—and things I’m committing myself to.  Of course, the weekends aren’t the only time I see chaos.  The weekdays (lately) are just as busy, especially since taking on some volunteer activities.  I’ve had to reconfigure some of my “normal” weekly activities because of this, but that’s okay.

Let’s look at a typical (ideal) week for me:

Monday
  • Alarm goes off at 5 am; out of bed by 5:15; enjoy my morning coffee
  • 6 am – exercise
  • 7 am – shower, eat breakfast, get ready for work
  • 8:15 am – out the door
  • 9 am to 5 pm – work
  • 6 pm – start laundry; cook dinner (my husband usually cleans up; one person cooks, the other cleans up)
  • 7:30 pm – do any light tasks that need to be done (I don’t usually schedule anything big for during the week, but sometimes things need to be done, like pay bills, answer an important email, etc.); fold and put away laundry
  • 8:30 pm – sit down with a cup of decaf tea and relax with my husband
  • 9 pm – bedtime routine (brush teeth, wash face, read)
  • 10 pm – asleep

Tuesday – same as above

Wednesday – same as above until work is done, then:
  • 5:30 pm – visit Mom
  • 7 pm – yoga
  • 9 pm – dinner (after yoga, this is usually something quick and light, like a sandwich)
  • 10 pm – bedtime routine
  • 11 pm – asleep

Thursday – this is my late day at work

  • 7 am – alarm goes off, etc.
  • 8:30 am – exercise
  • 10 am – get ready for work
  • 12 pm – leave for work, with a little extra time for small errands (stop at the ATM, post office if needed, Starbucks for a latte; these errands are separate from my normal weekly errands)
  • 1 pm to 9 pm – work
  • 10:30 pm – bedtime routine
  • 11:30 pm – asleep

Sometimes, I have other errands to attend to in the morning, usually places that live between work and home or places that are only open during the weekdays.  I adjust my routine accordingly if I have to work that in.

Friday – same as Monday & Tuesday, though heading to my sister’s around 6:30 pm for family dinner night; we usually get home around 10:30 pm

Lately, this schedule has not happened as planned.  For one thing, I haven’t been to yoga in months.  I can’t even tell you how long it’s been, but I’d say probably since before Thanksgiving (so, November of last year, for those of you not familiar with the American Thanksgiving).  Things were just crazy around the holidays and now it’s so cold and dark and snowy that going out again is the last thing I want to do.  Plus, in the last couple of weeks, I’ve had random meetings pop up, so I’ve done that instead of yoga.  I feel guilty for not going, but I have let go of the guilt because sometimes that’s just how it goes; life gets in the way and we can’t commit to everything.  I will get back to it soon.

Last week, I had two meetings pop up—one on Tuesday and one on Wednesday.  I just cannot do more than one weeknight activity.  Because I work Thursday nights and I go to my sister’s Friday night, it’s just too much to commit to more than one other weeknight for whatever activity, be that yoga or a meeting or something else altogether.  This gives me two weeknights at home, which I’ve learned (the hard way) is the minimum of what I need to keep sane.  So I had to choose between the two meetings.  I chose the one that was more important/urgent, the Tuesday meeting.  And I have another meeting this week, on Wednesday.

The frequency of these meetings is not typical.  But there are certain things going on that need to be attended to, hence the many meetings.  Once the situation changes (hopefully in the next couple of weeks), I won’t be so committed to meetings.

My weeks are so structured because of work.  While I can’t commit to as much during the week, I follow my routine more tightly, meaning I’m more likely to exercise during the week, even though it means getting up a heck of a lot earlier.  When I get up late and lounge around, exercise rarely happens, mainly because I’ve wasted so much time and need to move on to tasks.  So I do much better at accomplishing more overall when my schedule it tighter.  However, this is also probably why I’m more concerned with how my weekends go.  I want to be able to relax as much as I attend to tasks simply because I can’t relax as much during the week.

I love the volunteer work that I picked up.  In the beginning, I was concerned about having enough time to make it work.  But it’s just a matter of prioritizing whatever might come up.  True, I might have to give up yoga once a month (once I get back into that routine), but at least I’m not giving it up forever.  It’s a compromise I can do and live with that also allows me to continue to enjoy it.  And once one has learned to roll something new into an existing routine to make it work, it’s like it has always been there, a part of said routine.

Of course, circumstances may change, and come spring, I might need to adjust again.  But that’s where the planner comes in handy—I can evaluate what is possible and what is not and adjust accordingly.

Here’s hoping that the craziness dies down a little and I can get back into a more normal routine soon.

Happy planning!

10 comments:

  1. Over the past few years I've been trying to incorporate stuff I enjoy with work. Libraries make natural links for this. So reading the post I am thinking that you could look into getting a grant to bring a yoga instructor into the library for weekly yoga sessions for the public, to combine your neglected yoga with work, perhaps at the end of your shift so there would not be any issues about encroaching on work tasks? Another though would be to start a time/task management workshop series for your patrons. Then you're sharing your skills. When I found that I was tending to work through lunch every day instead of getting out for a walk, I started a series of lunch walks where I invite everyone at work (colleagues and patrons) to join me for a stroll at 12:30 daily. We meet at the entrance and take a walk. Sometimes there are three or four of us, sometimes just two, sometimes it's just me. But either way it gets me out for my walk and helps with library outreach.

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    1. We actually do offer yoga series classes. However, I am not the one who does programming, so it would never be a time of my choice (plus, booking the community room is an issue -- adults and children share the room so sometimes you have to book what you can get). Also, the yoga classes are registered because we pay an instructor, so we have to limit the number of people who can attend. This means that we have to limit the classes to district residents only; I do not live in the district and therefore cannot sign up. (Our registered programs are limited to residents since they are the ones paying for the library in their property taxes. It's different in different areas, but this is how Long Island libraries are largely funded, though we do get a small amount from the state.)

      As for a time management/task program -- again, I'm not the one who books programs. It's not out of the question, but I have so much that I'm responsible for at work, computer classes and book discussions included, that to add another class, a series of classes at that, would take away from my other responsibilities, and because I also cover the reference desk, I don't know how doable that would be. I'd have to talk to several people to get something like this underway. It's not impossible, but it would need to be timed appropriately, which might get hairy.

      Your walk idea is great! There are a few librarians who walk without fail every day on their lunch break. I did try it for a while but I didn't like coming back sweaty and having to be on the reference desk after that. It might be something I could look into starting again, maybe at least a few times a week, once the weather gets better.

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  2. Just a thought...I wonder if we feel busier in the winter because of the shorter days? When you are sitting around watching tv, the long evening is wonderful, but - to me - doing so much outside of the house ("at night') would feel a bit overwhelming. It's like you're trying to do things at 10:00 at night, as opposed to the summer where (it seems) you have so many extra hours in the day. I give you a lot of credit for not adjusting your schedule, unlike lazy, sleepy bums, such as me!

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    1. Hmm, I tend to feel like I have more time in the winter because there are more hours of darkness during which I'm not sleeping. Truthfully, as much as I'd like more down time, that too needs to be limited. It's just in my nature to be busy, to stay busy. On those rare days when I sit and relax more than I do stuff, I tend to get antsy. So for me, it's achieving the (near) perfect balance of both. I like to be busy but I also like (and need) my down time, no matter the season. :)

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    2. LOL, that's a great way to look at it! I think I go into hibernation mode in the dark, so I'll stop doing things by 5:00 or so on the weekends. :) I think you're doing pretty good with your balancing, and at the very least, you're the most productive person I know!!! :)

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  3. Excellent post! I definately like Josh's walk routine. We used to do it during the warmer months (ie no snow on the ground) at work. One thing I've picked up is to write down my goals for the day.. whether it's doing grad work, gym, or cleaning the bathroom.. By the end of the day it's put me in a better perspective. BTW, where's the time to go and visit that cute little boy we both know.. you know, the very well dressed, blond toddler we both know?

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    1. Oh, yes, my little blond buddy! He's so dapper. I see him when they join us for family dinner night on Fridays and other family functions. :)

      I've actually taken to writing down gratitudes (as well as concerns) each night. And they cane be as simple as "accomplished cleaning" or whatever I'm happy about that day. And like you, it puts things into perspective.

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  4. What kind of education one has to have to be a librarian?

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    1. To be a librarian in the US, you have to get a Masters of Library and Information Science. In addition, some states require you to get a state certification to work in a public library. If you want to be a school librarian, you also need the education requirements (typically decided by the state). Then there are specialty libraries (law, medical, archives, etc.) which may require additional/different courses.

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