If you are a parent, chances are you’ve run into a school project or two that wasn’t your favorite. Let’s see. There’s the story in a box, student of the week, family tree, science fair, social studies cultural project, autobiography, etc.
You name the project, we’ve done it. Often these projects involve huge doses of caffeine, several sacrificed hours of sleep and the worry that it will be destroyed by younger siblings before presentation day.
I had two such stellar projects this week with my middle school son. First, came the big writing project. My kind of project, but time consuming. Then came the whole Science fair project. Let me just say, I hated that as a child. . . not much has changed.
The cool part is that my husband is a science nut. Naturally, I did the grand hand off. That worked for me until the poster board and writing component, which once again was my thing. BUT my son took the grand prize and you can bet that I was ecstatic as he brought home the big purple ribbon.
My husband and I collapsed after it was all over. He asked me, “We have to do this three more times? I think I’ll let you do it next time.”
Like any great mom, I answered, “NO WAY! You are the science guru. That is your domain. I’ll do the writing.”
Do you ever wish you weren’t good at something? Okay, if you are a parent you understand that line of thinking. If not, go with it for a while.
My kids will always come before my career. Still, in the midst of all of the responsibilities as Mom, I find myself struggling to keep up with everything.
This is not a new struggle for most of us, but here are a few things I’ve learned that help me take a deep breath and enjoy each moment.
How To Prioritize Your Writing Career:
1. Understand the priority order in your life. In your mind make a list of what are your priorities in life. Now realize that those priorities shouldn’t lose focus, but might not always follow a legalistic pattern.
2. Prioritize Seasons. When my kids are finishing the school year, or a trimester there are more projects due and programs to attend. During that season they will need to be put in front of other things.
During a writing deadline, I may have to let career surge to the front for just a bit to accomplish the goal. In doing this, a writer must recognize that their success as an author also has value to their family.
3. Check the Balance. Just as you balance your checkbook every month, balance your priorities. Look ahead and see what may need number one attention in your family and career. Review the past month and see if you really did show appropriate balance.
4. Avoid the Pitfall of the Comfortable. We can easily fall into a rut with our time with our career. Giving more time there because we enjoy it. Likewise is true of family time. Although family time is important, if you are called to write, you should be spending time in that area as well.
5. Discard the Guilt. If we were to measure the amount of time we spent feeling guilty for our choices, the amount of wasted time might amaze us. Each day we start fresh, so embrace that day guilt free. You cannot change where you have been, but you can change where you are going.
What tips do you have for Prioritizing Your Writing Career?