This year, I set myself 22 little goals to pursue throughout the year. I call them the 22 in 22. Once a week (or there abouts), I take a few minutes to check my progress on a few of my goals.
Except that, there was a school vacation mixed in there somewhere, and as per tradition, every member of my household fell ill, each illness timed to perfection so that the minute they were in the thick of it, someone else started falling…so that the really sick person had just enough time to start on the mend, that the very fact of being on the mend meant he was a day away from getting sick again.
It went like this for two weeks. And then people wonder why I don’t like school breaks! It’s as if everyone gave themselves permission to disintegrate for two weeks.
#1 Connect better with the scalawags, according to their Love Languages
Or, what do you do when his Love Language is cold hard cash?
This comes up in the podcast episode to be released next week, but I’ll give you a little preview: what does a parent do when a child hates going to music theory class?
The child in question is 7 years old. Music theory, because he is at the Conservatory, is required if he wants to study an instrument (which he does). But he hates the class.
To be fair, it is two hours long, ends rather late, and he seems to think the teacher doesn’t like him.
We committed for the school year to this arrangement, and I intend for us to stick to it. But how to keep the child motivated?
This is where the topic of Love Languages becomes critical. When our Love Language is being spoken, it’s easier to be motivated and to do the work.
That’s why practicing his double bass is easy. His private teacher encourages him with words of affirmation (a love language). He wants to keep impressing her, so he practices. It works, and it’s a love fest.
But theory? I can work on it with him, (spending quality time, a love language) but all I can do is review his homework. I can’t change the fact that his teacher doesn’t like him or that it is two hours long.
But do you know what a sure fire motivation for this child is? Money. So I am over here waiting for the day when he gets unhappy enough about this that I have to promise him money if he attends his music theory class. And I will do it, if it is to keep the Commitment we made for this school year!
Incidentally, in this class I am taking for the next 18 months, The Five Love Languages is required reading. We have to do a project based on this book, and I’m fairly certain they aren’t ready for my 1001 theses on the Love Languages and Christmas Gifts, or the Love Languages and Coercing Your Children to Study Their Music Theory.
#14 Mise en Place and Weekly Planning
At some point around November 1, when I was barely on an upswing from being sick myself, and just before I developed laryngitis, I got the brilliant idea to plan my work and my Mise en Place for the first week back to school after the break.
When it came time to drop the boys off on Monday, I was so very under the weather that I thought I would prefer to just crawl back into bed and disappear from the face of the earth for a while.
But instead, I opened up my planner, looked at what I was suppose to do, saw that I could do it from under a blanket on the couch, since it was about writing an episode of the podcast, and then that’s exactly what I did.
Encouraged from having done what I said I would do (which is part of the time of this week’s episode of the podcast, entitled Let’s Do This), I kept going, and, in the afternoon, I did what I had written down to do.
And Monday night, I did my Mise en Place, according to what I had written the week before. I never had to think!
And Tuesday, in spite of the fact that I couldn’t sleep the night before due to election related anxiety, I did what I had written down to do.
And Wednesday, even though I hadn’t slept again because I was awake all night due to…yet again, election related anxiety and excitement, I got dressed wearing what I had said I would wear, and I did what I had said I would do.
And what could have been a completely lost week, ended up with me getting stuff done…even having done a teeny tiny bit more than I had planned!
So. Thank you Poppy Fields for your amazing plannering skills, and yay, this was definitely a win for me this week.