Sunday, 19 May 2013

What to Do?

Believe it or not, I actually have a list of things I want to write about on this blog. Yes, that’s right, I’ve planned it. The trouble is I’m not keeping to the list! I find that a bit challenging, as I like being able to tick things off my lists – that way I can see that I’ve actually achieved something. And it makes me feel comfortable that I’m going about things in a structured, orderly way.

my list of things to do - on the craft room wall
The difficulty is that I keep on thinking of more things to write about, and I end up writing about what I want to write about at the time, instead of following my (not very) well thought out list. So when I decide that I’m going to write about something NOT on the list, I put it onto the list just so I can tick it off. That lets me pretend that I am still doing things in a structured, orderly way. Sad, really.

cotton, rolled into balls, as per list
But the same thing is happening with all the things I want to do in my retirement. I have a list (of course), but then I think of things that I want to do that aren’t on the list. And for some reason, I think that I can’t do them unless they are on the list. I don’t pretend to understand the way my brain works!

Where am I going with this train of thought? One of the things people worry about when they are going to retire is “what will I do?”, thinking that they won’t have enough to fill up the time, and that they will be bored. That was certainly one of the most common questions I was asked when I told people about my impending retirement. But what I have found is that instead of worrying because I have nothing to do, I’m worrying because I have SO MANY things to do, and I don’t know which ones I SHOULD do. The question is still “what will I do?”, it just has a different spin on it.

things I have on the go - cross-stitch, knitting, cushion cover
none of these are on the list!
This is impacting on my enjoyment of retirement. Back when I wrote about being too busy to be bored, I didn’t realise how it would affect me, that it would become one of the mental challenges I’m facing. And I’m really struggling with having a less rigid structure about my day. I was a bit premature when I said I’d decided that structure wasn’t important to me anymore.  I’m trying to change the habits of a lifetime, here, and that isn’t easy.

Wish me luck!

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