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Small but significant

I just had the strangest experience. I was awake until the wee hours last night. Alia, our Executive Director just arrived from the States-such a treat to have her- and she and I were working and chatting until late.

I’ve realized over and over for the past three months that my productivity and organization is inextricably linked to structures that I have or haven’t put in place in my every day routine. This may not sound like an epiphany to most people, but none of my jobs in the past 12 years that I have been working have required (or had) any daily routine. Of course elements of routine have always been present, but the skill set I have developed has been one to deal with unpredictability and continual change rather than consistency over time.

Ultimately I’ve come leaps and bounds in the past week or so. I had been trying to use Google calenders (so the Emerge team can see what each other are up to at all times) to plan my days and log my completed tasks, but for whatever reason it hasn’t been the perfect fit. It has been frustrating to me to continually depend on an internet connection to see my to dos, and I am still unfamiliar with the full extent of Google’s functions (and haven’t prioritized learning them all). I finally realized it was time for a different tactic, and reverted back to iCal, my secret weapon. I now plan all to do’s and overarching goals, long term deadlines, etc in iCal, and fill in my completed tasks in Google later. This has completely changed both my actual productivity and my sense of accomplishment (both increased at least 100 fold.)

Long story short, I was entering my “to do’s” in iCal at about 1:30am, and forgot what day it was. I was confused because I have kept my computer clock on Eastern Standard Time so I’ll know without calculation what time it is if I want to call family or friends. I reluctantly made the decision to change my clock to Sri Lankan time (Indian Standard Time) to prevent future confusion and to straighten out my iCal “to do alerts,” (you can set times and due dates for tasks and meetings.)

I then went to sleep and forgot I had changed it. This morning I woke up and headed straight for my computer. I looked at the date and remembered. Then I had the strangest sensation of being grounded… as if I had just arrived in Sri Lanka. This whole time I’ve been of a split mind, always considering what is going on in the States and wondering what loved ones were up to. This tiny change proved to be incredibly significant, as I finally feel that my focus is here and I’m living in the present.

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