Thursday, 20 September 2012

Where has the summer gone? The swallows: how did I miss them leaving? (Have they left? I don't recall seeing one for a couple of weeks now).

I look out of the window at work and see blackberries instead of pretty pink flowers, and blackbirds perched on branches that are losing their leaves. Autumn is here. It would have been nice to have seen a proper summer before the seasons started to change.

There are two times of the year when I start to get itchy feet: always in the Spring when I feel like I need to be doing something - anything - other than what I am doing. The other time is roughly now, when there are only about 100 days left of the year and I haven't actually done the things I had planned to. What, for example, happened to the trip to Sicily (especially after I so diligently bought the very latest Rough Guide book), or the book that I was hoping to have had under a publisher's wings by now, or...well, you get the idea.

The problem with procrastination is that you spend so much time planning and dreaming, and not enough time doing. I don't want to end another year underachieving, or have unfulfilled dreams. I want to be successful. To have achieved something I value.

Frustrated with the time I have so far wasted over the last year, I have decided to put a stop to it. I have written a list of the things I want to achieve and I have come up with a fools guide for myself to get them done. The first step is learning to say no.

Today is day one of my given time scale (there are actually, including today, 99 days until my birthday) and the word "no" has not come easily. I gave away the last of my giant bag of chocolate today (this, the day after I stuffed my gob with Kinder eggs, making myself feel sick...knowing that today was coming). So now I just have to say no thanks to sweets and chocolate for the next 3 months. I am also saying no to time wasting activities, like Facebook, at lunchtime. I figure that saying no is like a method to better channel your energy to positive things. That way, the things I say yes to will mean more.

Finally, I think that I need to make myself accountable for achieving my goals. This should help me fulfil them, but to whom am I accountable to? Myself? That's not very good, I'm too soft. I wouldn't be able to discipline myself (what would I do? Ground myself?!). So, do I splash the details around so when I fail succeed, I can tell people?

Hmm. This probably needs more thought. However, time moves on. Today is day one and I am not going to fall on the first hurdle because I'm too busy looking at the details of the running track.

p.s. I am rubbish at thinking of post titles. Any handy tips would be amazing. Thanks!


  1. I was wondering if I know what a swallow looks like, but then concluded that I do (that's city folk for you - not used to nature).

    I kind of fell we are having our summer now. It hasn't rained very much and has been rather pleasant since the end of August (well in London anyway). We are due torrential rain all day tomorrow though. The central heating came on a couple of days ago and I suppose that marks Autimn's arrival.

    Read the book "Yes Man" and then you might realise that saying yes isn't always a good thing!

    In terms of accountability, right here is a perfect forum! I am quite willing to be a cheerleader for your achievements - and won't give you a disappointed look should you [insert polite term for fail]. I actually have a few sentences pinned to a noticeboard to keep some focus e.g. one says "I will exercise my right to manage" (as in the legal process for block management for where I live rather than something more profound).

    I can't help with post titles - you have to point out jokes to me, so inspiration is not my forte!

    I hope your weekend is as good as hoped!

  2. Sorry for my slow reply, RR. It has been one of those weeks.

    I am glad that I have you as my cheerleader! Yay! So far, I am doing very well, though my housemate bought me a pizza tonight which I felt would be rude to turn down (as it arrived just as I walked in the door from Kung Fu).

    I feel I have to explain: I am not trying to lose weight. I am just trying to cut out wheat which is actually really not very good for me.

    I love the idea of putting meaningful sentences up. I do a similar thing but I'm not as posh: I use neon coloured post it notes on my wardrobe. My favourite one at the moment is: You can not be lonely if you like the person you are alone with. Wayne W. Dyer.

    I have seen the film of "Yes Man". It is definitely not a good idea to say yes to everything!!

    My weekend was AMAZING. OMG amazing, in fact. :-) Big smiles in my world at the moment.

    Thanks for your comment, RR. Always appreciated. x

  3. Woo hoo for amazing weekends!

    A quote that I saw recently and often crosses my mind of later (and I also have as a post it stuck to the wallpaper on my laptop) is from Muhammed Ali:

    "It's lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believed in myself"

    I like the way that he identifies what the problem is then comes up with a simple solution - he will just deal with it differently. Whilst I don't think life is tht simple, I like that it is such a straightforward response. When doubts approach sometimes I just think to myself that I will just choose to think differently.

    I don't think I am explaining myself very well. I just like it. Maybe it will mean something to you too, even if not the same as it does to me.

    I shall stop waffling!

    By the way, I am cheering for you from the sidelines. Keep smiling!

  4. Woo hoo indeed, RR. :-) And this weekend looks like it will be set up to be a fantastic one too (or it will tomorrow).
    You have explained yourself very well indeed. I get it. It's that whole thing of coming against yourself or a problem and choosing to think differently. For me, I can see how believing in yourself allows you to greet all challenges with a warm welcome and succeed...if that makes sense.
    Thanks for cheering me on from the side lines. :-)