Deadlines help drive me. They also drive me insane. Like most Americans, I am too busy. I love being busy doing the things I love until I have a tight deadline, and then my stress level starts rising. I have gotten better at handling the stress, but I often wish I would stop and smell the roses--or in this season--stop and enjoy the gorgeous fall weather and leaves.
I finished my novel, Darling: Mercy Dog of World War I, on time and immediately dove into an outline for an American Girl. The college semester is coming to an end, which means final papers and work to edit and 'grade'. The holiday shoppers are ratcheting up their spending, which means Ebay items need to be posted and the booths need to be stocked. Plus kids and family are coming for the holidays. So what do I do to make life easier? I rent a third booth in downtown Staunton in the middle of the madness, which needs to be decorated and filled before Thanksgiving!
Why do I/we add to our crazy lives? I know from other posts (Linda and Michelle's recent ones come to mind) that I am not the only one who does this to my/herself. And I can't blame it on the husband or the kids. It's all my own doing! Interspersed in the madness are long walks with the dogs, caring for the horses and 'picking' at auctions and yard sales, which help recharge me. But I know right now I have taken on too much because the piles of items to be washed and cataloged are tipping over, the stacks of unorganized notes on the American Girl are scattered on the floor, the horses' coats are caked with mud, and I missed the deadline for this post. All are undeniable evidence that I can't ignore -- I am losing it.
Stop and enjoy the leaves before winter is here in full-force, I tell myself. Only Ziggy rolled in something horrible, the salt and pepper shakers need to go in the booth, and Mom is coming for dinner. Alas, the leaves may be on the ground before I finally take a deep breath, and I will have missed their beauty.
Do you drive yourself, too? And how do you stop? I need some suggestions!