Lately I have been reigning supreme in the kingdom of over scheduling. I tend to re-emerge from winter hibernation, during which I venture out only on an “as needed basis”, ready to accept any invitation thrown my way. Combined with an innate difficulty in saying no, I add random social events to my trusted iPhone calendar which, in all fairness, alerts me to the potential of conflicts. Because the events are in a remote future, I always feel I will figure it out but I hardly ever do. The day comes and I am forced to choose what to participate in, lest I spend way too much time in the car trying not to be late to one thing or another.
Not to mention a need for time alone or time to do things around the house or time to just veg – too often I forget I wasn’t born a social butterfly. I don’t even make up excuses anymore – in my blunt fashion that you (or most of you) have come to love, I pick up the phone and I admit to having crammed too much stuff in my available 12 hours or, simply, to being dead tired. I am confident anyone my age will understand where I come from.
So I recently sat down and established some ground rules for managing my time. It might not be valuable but it’s still mine, especially the one for which I am not paid.
- Never commit to more than one social engagement per day. I am not the President of the United States or a celebrity, where my presence might be needed in more than one place on any given day.
- Don’t even think I can accept anything involving driving across town during the week – evenings in Pasadena, Los Feliz or even downtown have to be limited to the week-end, to save my sanity which would otherwise be lost in mind-boggling and curse inducing traffic.
- Befriend the word “no” without pangs of guilt.
- Stop thinking I might be missing out on something. I am not 12 anymore and I should know by now how to enjoy myself and who to enjoy myself with.
I am committing this to paper (or ether) more for myself than anybody else, so I can refresh my mind when the urge to accept that invitation to a ballet on a Wednesday night at the Music Center strikes. Cross my heart. And tonight? I just cancelled a tasting at some new wine bar and Ottie and I will be watching Netflix.