The importance of not yet

Photo courtesy of Bart (Creative Commons)

Photo courtesy of Bart (Creative Commons)

It was a challenger of a week, worthy of a high ranking on the list of most trying weeks. A perfect storm of heavier than normal workload, medication that made me jittery and unable to sleep, the threat of really severe weather two days, discovery that my dearest friend has a life-threatening illness, and the list just continued.

My brain was foggy, my body was exhausted, and all anyone kept telling me was to get some rest, which seemed impossible.

But as with other trying weeks, I did live through it, and without being committed or having a breakdown. And I was pleased to discover a few tricks that worked even within the craziness, so I’m eager to put them to better use to hopefully thwart future repetitions of such experiences.

One of the most important elements that saved me that week was having a semi-organized task list that could bring me back to the key things I needed to get done each day. No matter how many interruptions I had, or additional responsibilities added, or foggy-headed misdirections, I had something to come back to that reminded me of the things I needed to accomplish – or that could be let go.

I think the letting go was maybe the key element in maintaining my sanity – taking the initiative to say “not yet.” Yes, I had started the week with a set plan for accomplishing certain things. Yes, in a perfect world, I could have easily met my expectations. But with new, urgent duties and tasks added, and the additional challenges thrown my way, there simply weren’t enough hours in the day – or focus in my brain – to get it all done.

By having that list, and the ability to review my full scope of responsibility and purposefully put aside and reschedule some things, I was able to accomplish the things that I needed to without losing touch with the other things. They are still on the radar, and will be taken care of, just in a different time frame.

What could you gain by saying “not yet”?

2 thoughts on “The importance of not yet

  1. Carol, this post is well timed. So much happening in life not planned that keeping a level head is difficult. Brilliant post.

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