Something people are slowly starting to realize about me is how much I love lists.

So, it should come as no surprise how I feel about creating a list of things to do each and every day.

Routine is a hard nut to crack, honestly. As a zookeeper, we had lists of things we needed to accomplish every day, and there were expected priorities (clean exhibit in morning, and back holding areas when animals were out on exhibit, for instance). But beyond that, every single day was different. Vet visits, a tour coming to visit the animal area, a school group, someone calling in, a special enrichment program. If I didn’t write things down, I would have been lost and confused.

Nowadays, it seems if I don’t have a 9-5 job like the rest of humanity, I should be able to accomplish whatever I feel I need to when I need to. Au contraire mon frere. If I don’t incorporate some sort of routine into my life, I walk around the apartment aimlessly. Sort of like I did most of today.

I did get a couple things on my to-do list finished. I sent off ZooFit inventory to Denver for the conference next week. I have pedometers I am giving to attendees and books to sell, and they won’t all fit in my luggage. Hopefully they get to Denver on time. I also STARTED to make soup for canning. I got so close, but didn’t get to the pressure cooking step.  That’s because I was aimlessly distracted.

This evening I took a writing class at the library. Not sure how much I got out of the class per se, but I did get some mind-mapping done, and figured out a good routine for me when I get back from Colorado in mid-October.

Mondays: 9am-1 pm Writing Time (at library or co-works)
1pm-4pm Workout Time
4pm- 7pm Dinner TIme
7pm- 10pm Writing and Reading Time

Tuesdays: Same as Mondays, with possible Pilates at 9 am

Wednesdays: 9am- 11am CrossFit
11am- 1pm Writing Time
1pm- 4pm Workout Time
4pm- 7pm Dinner Time
7pm- 9pm Writing and Reading

Thursdays: 8am-11am Workout Time (CrossFit and Pilates)
12pm- 4pm Writing Time
5pm- 8pm Dinner Time

Fridays: 9am- 11am CrossFit
11am- 1pm Writing Time
1pm- 4pm Workout TIme
4pm- 7pm Dinner Time
7pm- 10 pm Writing and Reading

Saturdays: 10am- 1pm Errands and Projects
1pm- 4pm Workout Time
4pm- 8pm Dinner (Writing Group on 2nd and 4th Saturdays)
8pm- 10pm Writing Time

Sundays: 9am- 7pm Time with Chris (hiking, day trip off island, working on projects)
7pm- 10pm Writing Time

 

The most important times for me to commit is Workout Time and Writing Time. I have found when I’m in the zone for writing and going to tons of groups, classes, and sessions, I start to neglect my workouts. On the opposite side, when I am deeply focused on my workouts, I tend to let writing fall to the wayside. Coming up with this schedule will help guide me to create a balance between my work and my health.

As far as writing projects, well, I’ve never been short for ideas. My next couple self-published books coming out are Principles of Eating Green, Positive Reinforcement is Not a Burger After the Gym, and the Conservation Fitness 30-Day Challenge. But that’s not all that I have in store. For NaNoWriMo, I am considering working on one of three essay collections again- Why Zoos Matter, Closer to Heaven, and The Cynics Guide to the Pacific Northwest.

When I get back from the conference, I am hoping to start my YouTube channel and posting one video a month to start. Once I get the hang of it, I’d like to shoot for once a week.

Mind-mapping and creating routines helps motivate me. It gives me clear direction and helps me focus on what my next step or goal is. If you find you also have trouble maintaining motivation to complete your goals, try writing out a schedule, and reinforce your achievements.