There are days when I wonder if I will ever get to use the scroll saw again. Seriously. There are so many things to do within the business that actually cutting wood seems like a rare thing for me lately. I know that is why I enjoy it so much when I do get the opportunity to actually cut, but it also makes me wonder.
There are many people that think that I get to cut and build things from the time I get up in the morning until I am ready to call it a day. That is so far from reality that I can’t even begin to tell you. I find myself envying when I read of others’ shop days when they spend all their spare time in the shop cutting. You wouldn’t think it would be that way.
Is it because I am a poor time manager? Although I know that I am not perfect, I really don’t think so. So much of what I do in between sawing sessions is vital to sustaining my business. If I didn’t take the time that I do, there wouldn’t be a business to worry about.
Once again balance comes into play. Trying to make everything work can be exhausting. There are days that I feel like a circus act, spinning ten different plates on sticks and doing my best so that none fall and break. You’ve seen that act, haven’t you? That’s me in the clown suit.
Organization helps a lot, but no matter how organized you are, there are still only so many hours in the day. My grandmother used to say that people are like pies. No matter how many slices you take, they still only yield the same amount. You can have lots of little slices or less big ones but you are still only able to do and give so much.
I think I have lots of little slices now. I am in a lot of directions and trying to do many things. Trying to prioritize everything and weed out what is really necessary and what is not is at best a challenge. I want it all.
Fortunately, even though I am doing lots of things at once, none of them are particularly unpleasant. I don’t know though whether that makes it harder or easier. I think both.
I was working on my pattern yesterday (reworking the old one and rebuilding it in an updated format) and my friend Leldon called me. We keep in touch and talk about once a week and he has been a great friend of mine for over 10 years. He also has a lot going on in his life and is an excellent scroll sawyer and friend. He is just now getting his finished scrolled items into a couple of local stores around town and it is a very exciting time for him.
We talked for a while, and I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with him. There was a point in the conversation when we both said how much we had to do and both kind of wondered why then were we spending an hour on the phone. I told him (kidding) that I was going to blame him here in my blog for me not getting done what I planned on doing yesterday. He said he planned on doing several projects and said he would post them up here before this morning. And I’ll be darned, he did it. You can see Leldon's Projects here.
I give him credit – he did get back to what he was doing and finish it. He said that since he told me about it, it gave him a reason or excuse to finish up and meet his goal. In my own defense, I did finish my pattern too.
In thinking about it, that sounds a lot like what I do here in my blog every day. I find that once I say to all of you that I am going to accomplish something, it is like putting it ‘out there’ and it motivates me to really get it done. If I don’t get it finished, there is usually a good reason why I don’t.
We all need these little tricks – many that come from within ourselves – to motivate us to complete things. Some are better than others at it and all they need is a silent commitment to themselves and they can get it done. Others need a bit more sometimes, like telling a friend or someone else their plans because somehow it seems to make the commitment more real. I find that the more directions we are in, sometimes the more difficult it is to meet all of our own standards and goals. As the pieces of the pie get smaller, our focus is spread out in several directions at once.
I don’t regret spending time on the phone talking to a friend. Even if it means that something else will be delayed a little. I suppose that I justify it as part of my life and since I am doing work-related tasks most of my waking hours, I think it is a good thing to take time to do some of the things that are important to make my life full and happy. Leldon is one of those things.
I have what looks like one more day here at the computer before I can update the site. I am hoping that I can get to the point where everything I need to do gets finished. I also have some outside errands that I need to do so my day will be broken up a little bit too. How much? I don’t know.
Realistically, I have a goal of working on some new projects for the holidays by the end of the week. It sounds like a long way off, as it is only Tuesday, but I have been asked by my friend Bernie to cut some lettering for him and we plan to see him on Sunday. I would like to have it done by then. These small jobs don’t really help me in the long run financially, but Bernie is a great friend and has done a lot for me and I feel he has very much earned a piece of that pie. There is little that I wouldn’t do for him if he asked.
So with that said, I had better get to it. I am woefully behind in my email again, but I am doing my best to catch up and hopefully will by tonight. I don’t really like when I can’t answer people right away, but for the most part people understand. Sometimes I am just out of pie.
Have a great Tuesday!
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"