Tuesday, September 23, 2008

That's the sound of letting go...

My daughter has a problem. She finds it very difficult to make freinds, because she's emotionally unable to cope with...I was going to say *some* situations, but if we're being honest, nine times out of ten, if she's gotten something into her head that she'd like to do, if she can't do it, she gets upset.
Freindship is one of those really fraught things - because she doesn't understand that just because SHE likes people, other people can't - or won't like her as rapidly. She takes it personally - and it escalates from there.
Last night we had to have a conversation about how to let go. She's only seven so we had to talk about it in terms that she understood - so, we decorated a wish box (she painted it pink, dipped it in glitter and then tied a rainbow of ribbons round it. We lined it with silk and a knitted square that she wanted for 'something'), and I taught her to write down her wishes. When she put something into the box, she rang a small bell. We've talked about how she has to empty the box if she doesn't get the small wishes - and take the ones out she gets. Most of all though, I taught her that she has to keep a smaller box - of wishes that may not work out. And that's her letting go box. Every ten things that she puts in that box that are valid and she manages to stick to, we give her a reward. And every evening, she and I sit down and discuss her day, over a hot chocolate.
So far, it's sorta helping. But I can't help but think that she's always going to associate wishes with ringing a bell - and letting go with closing boxes. I know it's better than tears, and yelling.
It got me thinking about my own stuff though - it seems to be a running theme with lessons in our house - the children learn, the adults learn, we move onto the next thing we all need to do.
When I sat and prioritised my most important 'things', I discovered two things.
One - short term, I have a lot of coding to do, but if I get it all done now, it's going to be much easier on me in the long run - and two, and probably more importantly, that's going to reduce by quite a bit, if I could just LET GO of some projects. Like my daughter, I have problems letting go - for different reasons, but it's ultimately the same thing.
If I want to make room for all of the 'new' I want to get up to - all of the short stories I want to write, all of the books I want to get stuck into. But I can't, if I have slivers of time that I have to fit dozens of things into.
Again, because this always comes up when I mention it, I have very few problems with time management - I just have a problem with ignoring new ideas.
So - there's another box in the house. It's a pretty black thing with silver ribbons (I got some samples in it ages ago). When I finish projects, I stick my hand in there, and I get to try something new. I find that I've got time, and I start something - but I've made sure that I can never overextend again.
I've already got a jar for story snippets, for when I get blocked (which, due to the nature of our cleaning sprees, gets 'backed up' to a database on my laptop) - so I think this is going to work.
Now - all I have to do is go swipe the bell...

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