Caterpillar Contemplations

"What the caterpillar calls the end, the rest of the world calls a butterfly." Lao Tzu

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Spin off from any other #blogjune posts that inspire you (me).

My sister gave me a well considered prompt I think … one, that if time allowed, I think I would enjoy immensely.  Reminds me of an assessment task in VCE (a long time ago now), doing English Literature and writing a creative piece based on the books / poems / plays that we were reading.  I like that sort of assignment. Gives me parameters to work with.

However, when I clicked on my sister’s link I felt completely overwhelmed.  Did I have to read them all?  Which one do I choose?  None of the first lines really pulled me in … What if I didn’t find any I liked? Should I just pick one at random and go for it?

It’s the sort of request I’d like to spend time considering and reading and indulging in the blog community – perhaps even scoring a new blog to follow – but that feeling of being overwhelmed often occurs when I already have so much on my plate.  I decided that, I should instead use the list of blogs to be my inspiration.  My inspiration is … “being overwhelmed” – I want to say overwhelment (but it’s not a word … yet!).

Being overwhelmed is only something I’ve had any experience with since moving back ‘home’ to study.  Juggling motherhood, study, work, relationships and friends has been a bit of a battle for me.  My life up until I was 28 had a lot of enforced structure. I went to school, I came home, I did some homework – then relaxed. Or I went to work, did my job, came home and relaxed.  Or I was always at home with my son and I did the housework – then relaxed.  There is an ongoing pattern yes?

But in the last six years that pattern has drastically altered. I work some days, some nights. I have studied some things online and some things on campus. I am often in Ballarat one day, Melbourne another day and Gippsland the next.  My study is a home office and much of my ‘work’ is done at home, but also my ‘play’ (as I’m a huge game nerd).  Defining boundaries of what is work, what is study, what is play gets very blurred.  I have developed a strategy over the years, involving a paper organiser that has allowed me to cope better with my vagrant lifestyle.  I colour code activities or responsibilities. I can see a month at a time, nothing sneaks up on me now – a week at a time meant things could hide two weeks from now and I wouldn’t know till I flipped the page. But nonetheless I still get overwhelmed.

I tell my students to piece-meal their scripts. To learn one or two or three lines a day – not try to read and learn a script in one sitting.  Break it into consumable, doable pieces.  Like so many pieces of advice, it’s often easier to give than it is to enact.  At least, I know it does work and because I’m talking the talk often enough, my brain’s tape recorder (it’s still a tape recorder in my head, not a CD) plays the recording and I listen and sometimes respond to my own advice.

So I guess these means that I should go back to the prompt page my sister gave me and I should look at one, perhaps two of those listed blogs, read them and decide which one to respond to … but I think … this blog may just do the trick!

I’m fascinated with goal setting, but rarely do it … I think I feel so all over the place that it is hard to nail down some solid ideas of what I ‘want’.  But, I think my sister could do a better job:
Sis your prompt is – In five years time I’d like to be …