Upping the pace

If I thought I'd put in as much effort as I could manage recently, I could be wrong. The time has come to up the pace for as long as it takes to achieve some of the goals I've set.

This could very easily wear me out long-term, so I'm setting myself a few guidelines:

1. My health is important. Although I might be putting in long hours, I will not forget to rest - and I'll use all I've learnt about mind-over-matter to ensure I "switch off" to do so. Unlike last night where I was still wide-awake at 1:30...

2. I need to watch my nutrition while under pressure, or I'll simply end up sick and unable to work. Back to the 5 a day plan, with as many veggies and fruits as I can fit in. No more dehydration - sufficient water intake will ensure my body runs well, but also keep the computer-eyes at bay.

3. One thing at a time. I may thrive on multi-tasking, but I need to learn to devote my full attention to one task at a time, finish it, and only then move on to the next. No more half-jobs left hanging, no more lost train of thought because I switched tasks. If something pops into my head, that's what my notebook is for - and I'll deal with it later.

4. Fresh air and exercise. Everyone needs a break now and then, everyone needs to get the blood pumping. I have to increase these and incorporate them into the physical/mental breaks between tasks and my everyday life.

5. Don't forget the goals. It's easy to get caught up in the here-and-now rush, lose sight of where you're headed, and find that you no longer have any motivation to move forward. I need to keep the bigger picture in sight, and know how what I'm doing now fits into that - constantly.

6. Don't forget the important stuff. Family, friends, laughter, good food and tinkering with the Landy in the great outdoors. While pushing myself further and harder, I can't lose sight of the things that really matter to me, and I need to set aside enough time to enjoy these too.

7. Ditch the distractions and sidelines. It's easy to keep checking email and GReader, forums and blogs and websites while attempting to work. It's gotta go. The Gmail notifier is going to be disabled during hard-slog periods, the Reader window closed, and time set aside to do those only once I'm done with the other stuff. It won't get done first, or I'll never start.

8. I need to sort out my work environment. Instead of straining to see the screen, sitting with a terrible posture and being somewhat technologically-disorganized, I need to make sure that how and where I work completely supports what I'm trying to accomplish. Yes, I have a plan for this one - it's just going to need to be implemented as soon as possible.

9. I will not try to be superwoman. Look, I could try, but it's not a good idea. I will do what I can, push myself as far as is wise, but not try to impress myself (or anyone else) by overdoing everything.

10. In all things, balance. This ties in with all of the above, as well as the fact that I'm a mom, a house-chick, a full-day-working chick, a Landy chick, a girlfriend chick... I cannot neglect one aspect of who I am to become obsessed with another. This will require organization and personal boundary-setting. It will require ditching bad habits in favour of creating good ones. It will require mindful living in rhythm with how life flows.

And I think 10 things is more than enough for now! Common sense dictates I should focus on only one and get it right, but this list encompasses it all, the nitty-gritty of what I should be doing as I dive headfirst into the new year's challenges.