The TIC routine is a disciplined taskmaster, and I don’t let myself off the hook very easily with it. I generally tell myself that even if I make a conscious decision during the day, I also have to blog about it. It is the only way I have of making my “practice” manifest in a way that allows me to hold myself accountable.
And generally speaking, when I slack off, I count it as breaking the chain.
Some nights I am not sure what, if anything, I really did that day. I review my day and I am not sure what to write about. Tonight, it was a bit of the opposite problem. I had a few things to choose from, yet the one I chose almost goes against my routine.
I drove Andrea over to an appointment this morning, and I could count that as a conscious decision to support my wife, but it’s too minor to count. It’s just part of being the only one in the house who can drive (not counting Jacob being able to park a Tesla).
I could count some sharing I did on the United Way campaign today. We’re encouraged to share “why we give” type stories, to share a bit of ourselves, and for a lot of people, there’s not much thought that goes into it. For me, I had stuff I could talk about. Namely the number of social services that we have used over the years for and with Jacob. I would have been really nervous to share that story in person, but it was somehow easier to do by video. So I did. I could even count that I’m supporting the campaign at all, which is a small mental feat of its own. I am concerned about their high admin fees for the national campaign when most of the fundraising is done for free by public servants. Yet I was more concerned that someone in my area, a close coworker, was voluntold to do it without any real support in place to help. I’ve done the coordination role before, I’m decent at it, and I’m good with technology, so I volunteered to help this year. I know, it surprised me too. Apparently my principles against the specific form of the campaign are less demanding than my principles of seeing a coworker have to do too much by themselves.
I thought about writing about two inter-related choices I made in the early afternoon. I was on a conference call with my boss and our management team when I could hear J having a small meltdown upstairs. I knew Andrea was with him, and I could have left it at that, but I’m trying hard to support him in his transition back into school, particularly on the emotional side. So I ducked out of my conference call for ten minutes to go check in on him to see if he needed help. A bit of extra outside perspective to let him know that struggling to get back up to full capacity is completely normal, just as it would be if he was a parent coming back after parental leave. You don’t simply hit the ground running on day two.
The inter-related choice I made was to somewhat push on moving our management meetings on Mondays to the morning from early afternoon. Jacob has his lunch now from 1:45 to 2:30, and since Andrea is taking the morning break (11:00-11:45), I’m on lunch duty. Which meant it would conflict with our weekly management meeting. In previous years, I probably would have just sucked it up and told J he was on his own for Mondays. Instead, I pushed the team to move it to the morning, with full transparency on why, and they agreed. So now I can have lunch with him four days out of five, with Andrea and I switching places / times on Thursdays. Andrea made similar adjustments to her schedule, but the blog isn’t about her choices, it is about mine. 🙂 So I could have written about that.
I could have talked about a small development at work later this afternoon that caught me off guard and my reaction to it. An opportunity of sorts, and while I suspect the answer will be no in the long run, I didn’t presuppose that outcome. Because I know myself well, and am comfortable making tough decisions quickly, I almost said no on the spot. Instead, I left the door open to a fuller conversation tomorrow.
Or I could have talked about some stuff Jacob and I did after school today, our choice of SupperWorks for dinner (yummy wings), or even a game of cards (Moonshot Euchre) after dinner.
Yet my full intent was to blog about what I planned to do later tonight, after supper, which was some more computer stuff. Yawn, I know. But I really wanted to dig into it and to feel like I made some progress. I actually have a couple of areas to tackle, similar in structure and activity, and I wanted to knock one off the list. Over the last few weeks, I have gone from having about 200 posts in “pending” and 30 in “draft” to having none left pending and less than 20 in draft. I still have 178 to “update” at some point, mostly for photos, but looking at the content of them, that is a long way off. A lot of digital dominoes to fall before then. But there are two small areas I can do now, and I was going to do at least one tonight.
As I was about to head down to my computer, Jacob and Andrea started watching tonight’s episode of American Ninja Warrior, something we do regularly as a family when it’s on. I was going to timeshift to later in the week, but I decided instead to sit down for the first hour with them. Then, when it was over, I decided I would just “let it go” for my plans tonight and to literally give myself a night off. I had a full productive day, and all I really wanted to do was veg and binge-watch the rest of Season 2 of Monk.
So I did. Not from lack of ambition, but because I just wanted to do it.
Tonight I choose to take the night off and give myself a rest.
What choices are you making today?