Monday, November 21, 2016

Let's Do The Time Warp (er..Time Map) Again!!

What can I say. My daddy always told me "just tell it, don't explain it".  Either you get it or......your movie education is less than full.

I am not by nature necessarily a very organized person in retirement.  While I do have a little calendar, I am not one to plan my days as such.  I keep track of where I have to be and important deadlines such as when open season ends on the calendar. Other than that however, I do little. I have a journal in which I write, and I use one journal for everything. Since this journal has quilt sketches and family history notes and perhaps grocery lists, it is not a planner in any sense.  And for the most, it works for me.

Having said that, I want to be sure that I personally am getting value from the time I spend, be it puttering, reading, sewing, hiking or doing absolutely nothing. I don't feel that I need to do more-some days I feel that I need to less than I already do (and that's okay). But it is nice to know that too much time is not being wasted and that  I would not enjoy doing something else more.

Enter the time map. From my understanding, a time map serves two purposes, just as so called budgeting tools often do.  A time map can be used to track, or to plan future days. Personally I tend to run screaming from the room when people say "plan". My point in trying the time map is simply to make sure that I'm doing what I really want to do and that what I'm doing brings value, physically and mentally.

The writer Julie Morganstern compares those little pockets of time in our lives to the upper closet shelf. Only a certain amount of things will fit.  Obviously in retirement we have much, much more time. Our time vs money quotient almost always inverts, for example. Even so, I want to make sure that what I put in that proverbial closet has value, even if I only half fill it.

I did try this before, with little success (hence the Again) However, that was a different time in retirement when I was doing more traveling, and so on and so forth. This time in preparation for my annual budget check and setting of priorities for 2017 (good grief!!), I'm determined to do at least a little better.

Except for one morning a week, I turn up the heat if necessary, and grab a blanket and coke and head to my corner chair for"morning time".  Since I also have said journal and my tablet in that  corner as well, if nothing else I will sit and write down what I remember of the next day.  We'll see how that works. My intent is to write in "broad strokes".  Dishes and showering and getting dressed may not get mentioned as they are the kind of things that must be done, if you will. And rather than "I sewed five blanket scarves", I may end up simply writing "sewed from about ten to twelve".  But, this is a work in progress so we will see.

Hopefully in a week or so, I'll know more. I'll know if it was worthwhile to do it, if I kept with it, if I need to make changes and more.  I will keep all of you in the blogging loop and share my successes and failures (there are always both), as I go.

As I wrote this evening, I did realize that today was probably not the best day to begin (see below) but we gotta do what we gotta do.  After my morning time and breakfast, you see, I remained in my PJ's and robe and spent the morning with my son on our monthly meeting. We go over his finances, schedules for the month (mainly to figure out meals and dog walking), and all kinds of things. This month included what we are getting whom off their wish lists to avoid duplication, if we are to go separately or together to Texas, logistics of seeing my ill father-in-law and more.

My afternoon was spent making a quick trip and getting fabric for Christmas gifts, baking one kind of Christmas cookie (I already mixed the dough) to freeze, watching football and reading. It's now nine thirty and I'll most likely craft until I hop into bed, take my Colorado medicine and read. Overall this day gets a B-mainly because I had no "down time" and I usually take an hour to read, meditate or listen to a concert online. Since I spent much of what would be my usual down time with a notebook and a calendar and pen, the day gets a B-.

And now, I'm off for that last little bit of sewing this evening.  Christmas throw pillows for gifts. This Monday in retirement.

And now, I'm off to start on Christmas throw pillows as gifts, this Monday in retirement!


  1. I should probably try writing down how I used my day, too. You know how they tell people to write down everything they eat? The intent is to show the slip ups in their diets. I think this would show me where I often waste time.

  2. Taking note of plans and accomplishments resonates with me. It's so easy to reply, "Nothing much," when someone asks what you've been doing or what's new. I liked Laura's Nov 20th post in The Occasional Nomads referencing what she was reading, listening to, watching, cooking/baking, accomplishments, anticipations, reflections on good things that happened and gratitude list. I still maintain that managing time in retirement is a major task. I'm anticipating a weekend "off" after the busy-ness of the first 3 weeks of November. Yes, a weekend off, even in retirement!


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