Crossing things off lists

Sometimes there are so many things that need to get done that it is hard to even make a to-do list. I find that I am most productive when I’m busy but not swamped. When I have too many things to do, it is hard to even know where to start.

Glasses case on belt

I often wake up early, and I find that the hour or two before breakfast is a great time to get things done. I’ve been trying to use this time recently, and it really helps to cross things off my list.  I don’t do leatherwork during these quiet hours, but I spend time planning my research, writing papers, writing grant proposals, or completing reviews for journals. It is a nice time to think, and when the sun starts to come up I sometimes go out for a jog or practice Tai Chi.

Parts of the glasses case

Or I’m sometimes too tired and just stay in bed, which can be nice too!

By crossing things off my academic to-do list, everything eases up. I have been finding a bit more time on the weekends, which allows me to reset my brain. This is when I try to do my leatherwork. I’ve had a very long to-do list with orders, and for the past 6 months or so I haven’t accepted new orders. After finishing the bag that I started last year but never finished, I’ve now started some new projects. Over a year ago, a very patient friend ordered a glasses case for her husband. I think it was first a Christmas gift, then a birthday gift, … I made a similar case for another friend about 25 years ago, and I even had a pattern and form to mold the leather. I just ran out of time and never got to this project, but by crossing things off my list I’ve been able to finally finish the case, only a year or so late!

It feels good to be making things again, and–as I often find–the time in the shop always seems to enhance other aspects of my life.

Author: edisonleatherworks

I'm a biochemistry professor and leatherworker who likes bicycles, travel, art, education, and music. Walking is my favorite form of transportation, and I regularly practice Tai Chi.

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