Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Day Zero Project: Five Minutes Early

Well, that was an education! I just about managed to check off "be five minutes early for everything for a week", and to my surprise - poor Tevye is not going to like this - I hated it. I thought that after a couple of days of cold-turkey earlyness, I would begin to get into the swing of it and see benefits, with less stress and rushing around. I didn't. It made things worse. Maybe it was the artificial self-imposed deadline, but I found it more stressful than my normal last minute dash. I am not often late (at least, not by more than a couple of minutes), but I am definitely an on time by the skin of my teeth person. Hurtling around doing six things simultaneously before rushing out the door at the last minute is my normal modus operandi. Somehow I seem to need the extra push that tight timing gives me. If I start getting ready five, or ten, or thirty minutes earlier than usual, I just can't get into gear and still end up with the last minute rush. Last week I discovered that doing the manic dash five minutes early doesn't make it any less of a manic dash. It just makes it more irritating because it feels unnecessary and unnatural. And once I have rushed, chances are I then have a frustrating wait for someone who isn't ready, or have to hang around in a freezing cold school playground or dance school because I am too early. Thanks, but no thanks.

So, lesson learned. My last minute system - if I can dignify something so apparently chaotic by calling it a system - works for me. I just need to find some way of making it less exasperating for the early birds in the family (sorry Tevye!).


Dawn said...

I need to be a few minutes ahead of schedule so that I can run back in the house 10 x before we go. The kids are convinced that they can never have a party, because they are never really sure when I'm gone.

Theresa said...

Sounds exactly like me. I hate being late, and I rarely am. But I also hate being early. I typically arrive exactly when I intend to, which is just in the nick of time.