How do you handle busy weeks?

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How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Desperate4Discipline » Fri May 27, 2011 10:32 am

I am the president of the parent group at my daugher's school. I'm also active in the district as a whole. This time of year is crazy busy! So much so that the jobs around the house that D and I have established aren't getting done at all. Would those of you who are bottoms expect to be disciplined for this? And those of you who are tops, would you punish your bottom for not following the rules even though you know how busy they are?

D is still uncomfortable with TTWD and he actually asked me how we should handle this. Of course I would prefer for him to take the lead but I was really happy that he at had TTWD on his mind and was actually trying to figure it out. :-D
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Meg » Fri May 27, 2011 11:11 am

That is kind of tricky, and I am not really sure what your arrangement with your husband is.

Here is what we do. Obsidian sets a daily schedule for me, based on the other things that are going on. I get disciplined for not following the schedule, not necessarily for not completing everything. There are exceptions to that (i.e., if I have created a crisis by not getting something done in a timely manner, etc.), but for the most part it is based on the schedule itself. If something comes up, i.e., I have hit a wall, and it is impossible for me to think or work anymore, I can ask permission to change the schedule, which may or may not be granted.

Speaking of schedules, Obsidian is about to give me mine, now....so, I better go!
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby JigsawAnalogy » Fri May 27, 2011 12:15 pm

In my case, it's usually less about how busy I am and more about how my health is doing. The rule right now is that I do as much as I'm able to do, when I'm able to do it, and there isn't a penalty for taking care of my body (which is to say, resting when I'm tired, and so forth).

When we had a more specific rule about chores, and when my health was a little more reliable, it was generally fine to change things so long as I checked with W before not doing something I'd previously agreed to do. So in my situation, if I talked with W about it, and she agreed that there wasn't time for doing everything on my plate, she'd make a decision about which things were more important, and which things could slide. If I just skipped doing something without talking about it ahead of time, unless there were a really good excuse, I'd probably get punished for not doing it.
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Lady Governess » Tue May 31, 2011 7:03 am

Personally, I handle them by spending more time on boards and other diversionary tactics until I finally shake myself and work like a train to get everything done. But that's not really helpful to you is it?

I guess you need to find a way of making a list of things to be done and then prioritising them so that you do the important things and leave the less important ones. A series of cue card? A whiteboard? Magnetic strips? Whatever works for you. I would tend to get a bottom to divide all the tasks into "Essential" and "NON Essential". Then I'd go through the list and adjust or approve it. Then at the end of the day or week it would be punishments for essential things not done and good girl treats for any non-essentials she managed after all.

Basically that's how it works at least. The complications are....complicated so I won't bore you with them. Suffice it to say if she thinks she's busy when she gives me her list she will be more even busy when I have finished approving it. Bottoms get into so much less trouble when they have things to do.

Not to mention the fact that I will usually help her out if she's falling behind. I'm not completely evil you know! :rubhands:
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Meg » Tue May 31, 2011 9:00 am

With all due respect to LG, to do lists can be major traps for me. I actually had to scrap my task list system altogether about a year ago, and it was the best thing I ever did. I still need to keep track of my tasks, but in a much different way.

My problem is that I get overwhelmed. I tend to be a big picture person, so if I see a long task list I will look at it, and look at it, and then think, "There is no way I can do this," and give up and do something a bit more fun. Having the threat of punishment doesn't help here, because if I think it is impossible, and I will get punished anyways, I figure I might as well enjoy myself, rather than work and work, and fail anyways. Also, anytime I would work on one thing I would be obsessing about all of the other things that weren't getting done. For example, if I was doing work-work, I would obsess about the messy house. If I was doing housework, I would obsess about the work-work. We won't even go to prioritizing the list. I could spend hours with complicated prioritizing, and then be so exhausted after that that I would still not do anything.

Can you tell I have some issues with procrastination and am a bit of a perfectionist? :blush:

So far, for me, schedules work the best. Even if I make a list, I put it on a schedule. This way during the time period that I am supposed to do housework, I know that this is my task. I can focus on that. If I start worrying about my work-work, I can stop myself, by thinking, that will be from 3-6, and get back to the task that I am scheduled for at the moment. You would be surprised how much can get done in an hour, when you are actually working one task at a time through that hour.

Of course, I am far from perfect with this, and in fact, Obsidian has just raised the penalty for my going off task during scheduled work times :eek:, because she found it obvious that the penalty was not a sufficient motivator. :blush:
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Lady Governess » Tue May 31, 2011 12:33 pm

With all due respect to LG, to do lists can be major traps for me. I actually had to scrap my task list system altogether about a year ago, and it was the best thing I ever did. I still need to keep track of my tasks, but in a much different way.


Ah yes, Amethyst, but this was about an occasional busy week in which the OP (D4D) had a flood of unusual tasks that only come up occasionally - related I believe to home life vs kids' school lives. The question wasn't about how to keep track of a life in the day to day ways we all need to. It was about how to prioritise in busy weeks when exceptional circumstances come along.

A slightly different thing I think.
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Meg » Tue May 31, 2011 1:57 pm

Lady Governess wrote:Ah yes, Amethyst, but this was about an occasional busy week in which the OP (D4D) had a flood of unusual tasks that only come up occasionally - related I believe to home life vs kids' school lives. The question wasn't about how to keep track of a life in the day to day ways we all need to. It was about how to prioritise in busy weeks when exceptional circumstances come along.

A slightly different thing I think.


You are right. I apologize. Also, different things work for different people, and to do lists can work really well. Also, my own issues with task lists can very well be something that is personal to me.
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Lady Governess » Tue May 31, 2011 2:10 pm

Oh honey. Apologies are absolutely not necessary. I can see I am going to have to moderate everything I write to make things absolutely clear. I'm so sorry.

My last comment was said with the gleam in the eye that grandmas ave when they say silly things to their five year old granddaughters who want to eat cookie dough. That sort of "You really shouldn't do it but I'm not watching so do it quickly while I'm not watching" sort of gleam.

Or the one grandpas have when parents have said, "No candy" but grandpa has something very candy-like in his pocket and secretly passes it to the child.

You know the one, don't you?

GLEAM .....TWINKLE.....WINK.

xxx
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Meg » Tue May 31, 2011 4:13 pm

Lady Governess wrote:Oh honey. Apologies are absolutely not necessary. I can see I am going to have to moderate everything I write to make things absolutely clear. I'm so sorry.


Or, I will have to be a little thicker-skinned...or just check in about things if I am not sure ;) Online communication is good in some ways...but it *is* hard to see the eye-twinkles. We need a smilie for that I think... :)

Actually, for *me*, schedules are particularly helpful during the crazy-busy weeks (not that I really have non crazy-busy weeks....I could honestly work 24/7 non-stop and still not complete everything I have to do). The reason for this is that it helps me to adjust priorities as well (in addition to having a Top prioritizing things...lol). For example, if I list as a priorities 5 major work projects, plus cleaning the entire house in a day *and* I only have 2 or 3 hours of time that I am not in meetings, or other scheduled events that can't be adjusted (yes, I HAVE done that)...I *really* have to adjust what I think of as priorities, because try as I might, it's not going to happen...and my response to that tends to be not doing ANYTHING and playing online, knitting and crocheting during the non-scheduled time :blush: :blush: :blush: Whereas, if I (and Obsidian) look at the list and say, pick one of the work projects, and, well, cleaning the bathroom, and decide that the work project will be done during one period of time and the bathroom will get done during the other, I am VERY likely to accomplish that. If the time is set aside and I finish the scheduled task early, I am expected to at least start something else until the time period is done.

I think that the main thing is that whatever you are expected to do is at least *possible* for you to accomplish, and that your husband has some say as to what his priorities are, and what he would like you to accomplish in the midst of the craziness.
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Lady Governess » Tue May 31, 2011 5:49 pm

Or, I will have to be a little thicker-skinned


if you plan to do this, might I suggest you hurry it up and grow the new layer of skin as thick as possible bfore Sunday's meeting with the Cane family?

Just a helpful suggestion.

;P
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby JigsawAnalogy » Tue May 31, 2011 9:58 pm

amethyst wrote:Actually, for *me*, schedules are particularly helpful during the crazy-busy weeks (not that I really have non crazy-busy weeks....I could honestly work 24/7 non-stop and still not complete everything I have to do). The reason for this is that it helps me to adjust priorities as well (in addition to having a Top prioritizing things...lol).


I make a point of making a schedule for the busy weeks, actually. Because if it's just a list, W has pretty much the problem you describe of not knowing where to start, and so not starting. I, on the other hand, tend to get locked into just doing one task after another without taking a break, and then I crash *hard*, both emotionally and (especially of late) physically. The schedule helps both of us in ways that a task list is less helpful.

One of the things that's been hardest for me to learn is what I think of as "dropping ballast." When things get busy, I have had to train myself to accept doing less than I think "ought" to get done. And I've had to learn to revise priorities so that I can focus my energy on the absolute most important ones, and accept that anything that isn't the most important stuff is just ballast. But then, my situation and personality are not necessarily someone else's. And I suspect that were W's and my roles reversed (leaving our basic personalities as they are other than the top/bottom inclinations), we'd have a schedule encouraging to do more than what she would naturally wind up doing.

Well, okay, I have to do *more* than I would naturally wind up doing, if by "more" we mean "more resting." (I hate resting, particularly when there are things I want done!)
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby Desperate4Discipline » Wed Jun 01, 2011 12:29 am

amethyst wrote:My problem is that I get overwhelmed. I tend to be a big picture person, so if I see a long task list I will look at it, and look at it, and then think, "There is no way I can do this," and give up and do something a bit more fun.

I tend to do that too. But not necessarily from lists. Sometimes just looking around the house and seeing all the things that need to be done. Sometimes lists help.

amethyst wrote:Having the threat of punishment doesn't help here, because if I think it is impossible, and I will get punished anyways, I figure I might as well enjoy myself, rather than work and work, and fail anyways.

I'm hoping that won't be the case for me!!!! I'm really hoping the threat of punishment will be the kick in the pants (pun intended) I need.

Lady Governess wrote:if you plan to do this, might I suggest you hurry it up and grow the new layer of skin as thick as possible bfore Sunday's meeting with the Cane family?

LG, thanks for the laugh!!!

JigsawAnalogy wrote:I hate resting, particularly when there are things I want done!)

I need a little bit of that!!!
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Re: How do you handle busy weeks?

Postby W-Jigsaw'sBoss » Tue Jul 05, 2011 11:11 pm

I actually heard something different from the original question.

What I heard was sort of twds the idea of leniency, and what a top should forgive and what a top should be completely non-negotiable on. During a busy week, what sort of flexibility should be given, especially when a top is struggling with learning how to be an authoritarian?

That's how I saw the original question.

I've learned that, within reason, stricter is better, as long as my expectations are reasonable. If you're unable to get all the tasks done, of course you want leniency, but I think the key is communication.

J used the example of when she's got tasks I have assigned, and she isn't physically capable of getting them done. We have a policy of texting or communicating in some way BEFORE she'd get "caught" not having done the task.

It always comes back to communication. :)
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