Ladies and gentlemen, it is with distinct pleasure that I announce I am 1 final exam away from finally being qualified to tell you what to do;organization wise. Now, now, I know you’re not as excited as I am. But I want you to know, you’re on the ground floor of what could be a very good thing. In all the text books I’ve been consuming, one thing stuck out: There is no organizational expert for the modern maiden, or man. With chapters dedicated to video cassette organization and paper catalogues, I think I’ve struck upon my niche. Or perhaps, it’s struck upon me. I will be able to create streamlined systems for the tech we have and the clouds we depend on. I will also be capable of parring down your clutter and building new habits and routines. Which will save you time, energy and lead you toward living the life you want. So, as I sit down to take the test that will seal my organizational fate, I’m revved up and ready to become the Modern Emily Post. And I will Post, right here;)
How do you measure, measure a year?
In sunrise? In sunsets? In cups of coffee? In slightly outdated musical quotes? The world keeps turning, and everyday keeps sliding past like sand through the hourglass. So do the days of our lives. You are where you are now…but how should you measure your progress?
We have no control on the passage of time, it’s what we choose to do with that time that helps us progress. Two years is going to pass whether you go back to school or not. You’re 32nd birthday will arrive, whether you want to celebrate or not. All we can do is use our time wisely, or at least have fun.
Contrary to popular belief, time and progress aren’t the same thing. Older doesn’t always mean wiser, sometimes it just means crotchety and old.
Progress feels good. It’s not always easy, but knowing that you’re moving towards something is a reward in itself. It’s not as rewarding as an actual reward, but those are usually connected to lost dogs and pirate booty.
So, on this Thursday why not write down the progress you hope to make by next Thursday? Next month and beyond. Progress takes time and all we have is now. And then…but then doesn’t arrive until we start living in the now. Now, ain’t progress a fickle chick?
When I was a little girl who thought she was old enough to be a grown-up, I started getting and giving phone calls. I loved that glossy white wall mounted magical machine. I loved the way it would sing it’s ring throughout the house. Jingling with the urgency of unknown adventures at the other end. I would come flying down the flight of stairs, sliding around the linoleum clad corner, snatching the receiver from it’s vertical cradle; breathlessly greeting the possibilities, only to have to hand it over to someone else. Or on the rare occasion that it was for me, scream for whoever to hang up the other extension. As I leaned gratefully against the wall I would slide down, pull my knees to my chest and twirl the cord around my fingers as the conversation unfolded into my ear. I was happy to spend hours chatting idly or absorbing long awkward teenage moments together in silence. The home phone was a family fixture; literally and figuratively. Now, it faces extinction.
I grew up in a small town. As you may know, entertainment is tough to come by, I had to make it myself. I am not proud of this, well, I’m a little proud of it, even though I know it was wrong…on more than one lazy afternoon I let my fingers to the walking through our local phone book. I searched for names that made me laugh; and farm towns have plenty of rural names…Caspers, Kuntz and Balls. My girlfriends and I would double over laughing at badly made fridge and nose running jokes. We thought they were the funniest thing that could’ve happened, at least on a boring Tuesday in the rumpus room.
My Momma, however, didn’t see the genius in these pranks. When the phone rang with a giggling girl or cheeky chap poised to prank, she would whistle into the mouthpiece. Now, this was no ordinary whistle; it was renowned throughout the neighbourhood. In the evenings instead of a dinner bell, my brother and I were summoned with the shrill whistle shriek, sending us running home, no matter what we were doing or where we were. Imagine directing that kinda power into the ears of an unsuspecting jokester…needless to say, we were not pranked by the same joker twice. And at school the next day I would hear about how much their ears were still ringing.
When I got my first cell phone, I still had a landline. A cheap phone that played the Rocky theme, and I loved it. It was also the way I got internet. I can’t even remember when I stopped using a wall mounted communicator. Or when text messages became a mainstay. I am confused at how I migrated without realizing it. Almost like flying south on autopilot, only more like a Smartphone. I am inadvertently helping to kill the landline. If that happens here are some of my big concerns: Where will my kids get phone calls from their school friends? How old will they be before asking me for a cell of their own? And at what point will tele-communications become an implant ? For now, I can’t worry about all those futuristic details, I can only love that olde-timey feeling when I am tied to the wall at my parent’s house, where I pace. It reminds me to be thankful for the freedom of my wireless. And though I am sad the hard wired telephone is dying, I can’t stop progress single-handedly. But at least now I can talk hands-free.
The follow-through is key when swinging a bat, club or cat. But it’s also important for every other activity, ever. The follow through is the thing that gets you to the end. Progress is laid out: beginning-follow through-completion. The follow through is the toughest part. It doesn’t have the excitement of the start of something new. Or the relief and satisfaction of a job well done. It is all the work and all the struggle and all the boring, but it’s also all of the important.
It is well documented that I am a procrastinating Jane, a hoarding Pete and general sad sack. All of which I would debate you, but it’s hard to fight facts. Cuz I am also a truthy-goose. Now, of course all those terminologies are made up, but that doesn’t lessen their implied meanings. See how I followed through on that joke? It may not have gone exactly as planned, but by then I was committed. And when I am committed, it’s usually for 28 days. Or until I forget about it and start another project. But part of me says I may have stumbled off track, forgive me.
I am 6 pages away from being done a book I am really enjoying. It combines Zombie apocalypse and blogging, throw in a Unicorn and it would’ve been Xanadu. I am having trouble with follow through though, I don’t want this book to end. I can’t bring myself to sit still and take the head shot; effectively killing this book, and preventing it from “amplifying”. Where’s all my big talk now? I’ll tell you where. It’s hiding behind a stack of books I am not excited about. I wish every book gave me those funny feelings, wanting to rip through those pages. But they don’t and it’s too late; I’m committed.
Follow through isn’t such an awful thing…all the time. The journey can be fun when there’s a clear destination. Problem is follow through can feel like a stationary bike. Sure, it’s working, but wouldn’t it be better to be outside, really getting somewhere, even if you just had to turn around to come back home. I know I am not being very clear, foggy weather does that to me and it’s been a foggy year so far. What I want to remind us is to think about all the crazy different ways we can follow through. There are segues, unicycles, paddle boards and you get to choose whatever way you want. Remember, there is always more than one way to swing a cat; just make sure you follow through.