Lately, I feel like I’m in a bit of a slump. I’m struggling to find the right balance between spending and saving, budget properly and keep up with it, get things done around the house, plan for upcoming renos, work on my goals, and find the time to do things that I enjoy. There’s many an evening this month, when I’ve gotten home late from work and not had the motivation to get anything done, whether it’s laundry or blogging. It catches up to me by the weekend though, and then I feel like I have so much to do and not enough time to get things done before the weekend is over. That only ramps up the stress factor, which doesn’t much help in getting anything done. I’m getting frustrated with myself because seemingly nothing is getting done and as summer gets closer, I know my schedule is going to get busier.
I’ve had enough with not getting anything done. Time for a turn around. First, I think I need to figure out why I’m not motivated and why I’m so frustrated about it. My lack of motivation and ambition seems to stem from a couple things:
- Being busy at work. I typically work an 8 hour day, but I’ve done a couple 15 hour days this month already. I’ve been working through a lot of my lunch hours too. After a long, busy day at work, I’m usually more keen to put my feet up and vegetate than to clean or do much of anything else.
- Leaving everything until the weekend. I usually spend most of either Saturday or Sunday cleaning, which doesn’t leave much time to get anything else done, especially if something else comes up and something always comes up (usually Dad wanting help with something up on the farm).
- The weather. Dull, grey and cold. It’s very tempting just to curl up in a blanket and a big cup of tea and try to keep warm.
- My own unrealistic expectations. I can do a lot of things, but I can’t do everything. I need to be a bit more forgiving with myself and a better judge of what’s important to get done and what’s not.
I figure my next step is to look at the causes of my slump and decide how I can address them so they don’t eat away at my motivation and ambition. I have to keep my problems in mind though (like balancing spending and saving) so I don’t get carried away trying to think up innovative ways to move large, cold air masses away from southern Ontario.
Here’s what I’m going to try:
- Stop working through lunch. Work will continue to be busy, but I think it will help break up the day if I actually do something other than work at lunch. I’m going to get back into the habit of going to the gym at lunch and on my off-gym days, use that time to run errands or go for a walk.
- Make smaller to-do lists. For some reason, when I write a to do list, I seem to include everything I want to do for the next month and a half. I’d probably get more done (or at least feel better about what I do accomplish) if I write shorter, more realistic to do lists.
- Associated with my to-do lists, I’m going to start writing my to-do lists on my ipad, instead of scraps of paper which I inevitably lose or forget at work. I might try and schedule my to-do list in my calendar as well.
- Allow for some down time every night. An hour before bed to watch tv, read a book, play a video game, or whatever my wee heart desires.
- Use a notebook to keep track of my spending, then update my budget first chance I get. I downloaded Dropbox, so I will be able to access my budget spreadsheet at work and home and keep everything synced. This way, I hopefully won’t behind on keeping track of my budget.
- Start make use of automatic savings. Don’t worry, I typically write myself a cheque, but I think going to automatic savings would help reassure me that I am saving and cut down on the to-do list.
- Try getting myself into a routine. A bit of cleaning throughout the week, an hour to sit down and blog, another to sit down and do my volunteer work. My thinking is a routine might help in taking care of some of the more menial tasks on the to-do list.
Hopefully, this will help me climb out of my rut. Do you ever feel like you’ve got way too much on the go or unmotivated? Got any tips for me?