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.
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.
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.