Monday, December 3, 2018

No Dearth of Deadlines

Maklay62 via Pixabay
This is the time of the semester where I either sleep like a rock or am plagued by an inability to fall asleep -- in my bed at least. I fall asleep easily (and much too early some nights) on the sofa in the family room, face first in my iPad as I watch TV or play Words with Friends. Then, when I go to bed, I either conk out the minute my head hits the pillow, or I toss and turn, making lists and worrying about things I can't quite put my finger on.

At my age, this isn't just a seasonal thing, but it gets worse as all of the pieces of the December jigsaw puzzle race at me. Finishing essential content. Grading papers. Christmas preparations. Grading presentations. Family time. Errands. Lists.


And there you have it, my friends (or, more accurately, I have it). The thing that pokes at me to put all of those pieces together and finish the puzzle, already: deadlines. Get it done. But did you do this? And did you remember to do that? And what if you tried it this way?

They're the thing that sends me running from my nice, warm bed to nest on the sofa under a blanket with a textbook, a just-right pencil and a Crayola Doodle Pad (the closest I can come to a blank slate) to sketch out the lesson plans that are running through my head at 3 AM.

I know this, too, shall pass, and I try to have a sense of humor about it, but the weight of a succession of deadlines sometimes makes me cranky. It makes me tired, too -- just not at the right time of day.

I've got my strategies: making lists, setting goals, building in breaks and reminding myself that the underlying buzz gnawing at me can actually be channeled into energy I can use for getting things done.

And it feels really good when I get things done.

So, I'll keep powering forward, checking things off my many lists and keeping in mind that, especially at this time of year, I'm not alone. Still, I'll resist the urge to go on Facebook and see if anyone else is up because that will just forestall sleep even longer.

But, if you need me, I'll be nesting on my sofa. Textbook optional, blanket required.

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