Posted in Musings

Wanted: a professional brain organizer

It is not unusual for me to work for hours, with the end result being several new ideas, a few projects started, and not very much accomplished. It gets very frustrating!

This morning I was working on a project, and I closed a tab that I later decided I wanted to look at again. I opened my browsing history and was astonished at what I found. In the first hour of my time online this morning I had opened 79 sites! Is it any wonder that I never seem to get much done? Most of the sites were related to the project I was working on; a few were rabbit holes that I visited that had nothing to do with the project before I reminded myself that I needed to get back on track.

I went back to my active browser window, and I had 31 tabs open.

  • Tab 1: Google Drive folder for work account
  • Tab 2: Trello Board with overview of current project
  • Tab 3: Spreadsheet with Cognitive Load Analysis I did for current project
  • Tab 4: Sample instructions for a game format I am considering using in the project
  • Tab 5: Sample website I am considering using in the project
  • Tab 6: Sample hyperdoc I am considering using in the project
  • Tab 7: Website template I started playing with as framework for project
  • Tab 8: Google Drive folder for project
  • Tab 9: Google Slides with reflection questions for participants
  • Tab 10: Google Doc with Level 1 Rubric
  • Tab 11: Google Doc with Level 2 Rubric
  • Tab 12: Google Doc with Level 3 Rubric
  • Tab 13: eLearning module with pieces of the course instruction
  • Tab 14: Canvas course with resources for the new course
  • Tab 15: Different canvas course with content for the new course
  • Tab 16: Sample microcredential template I am considering using in the project
  • Tab 16: Microcredential content for the project
  • Tab 17: Spotify (music to keep me sane!)
  • Tabs 18-21: Another sample site for inspiration and supporting material pages
  • Tab 22: Browsing history showing the 602 sites I have visited since Thursday!
  • Tabs 23-24: eLearning module to embed within my course as an extra learning tool
  • Tab 25: Website I am building for a group I belong to
  • Tab 26: Google Slides presentation I am presenting June 6
  • Tab 27: Trello with my 2018-19 negotiation projects organized
  • Tab 28: Trello with my S.T.O.P. (Sit, Think, Organize, & Perform) Board
  • Tab 29: Trello blog with tips I want to use on Tab 28 but haven’t set up yet
  • Tab 30: Slack workspace to explore
  • Tab 31: Rice Courseload Estimator to help figure out the amount of credit to assign to new course

I tried to figure out which ones I didn’t need any more, and I got stuck.

If I close the windows with the projects I am not actively working on, I will forget I am supposed to be working on them. Or I could put them on my STOP board…

Three tabs closed!

I don’t really need to see the whole history at the moment.

Another tab closed!  Now – only 27 left open – all related to the project I am working on.

I know it is possible to hire professional organizers to help organize your house. I need a professional organizer to help organize my brain!

i think my brain has too many tabs open

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I sometimes wonder how I can work non-stop for an hour an not seem to get anything accomplished

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Posted in Musings

When the Light Clicks

I love it when problems I have been struggling with for a long time just suddenly click into place! I am sure there will be repercussions, and all sorts of other things will fall apart in exchange. But at least something I have been struggling with for months has been made clear. Why did no one tell me about Awesome Table a long time ago? Anything else people need to share to clear up the rest of my struggles? Who knows, maybe Awesome Table will fix those too. I wonder if it does laundry…

Posted in Musings

Recipes and memories

Tonight I did something I hadn’t done in a long time – I opened my folder of recipes. I felt like I was pushed through a vortex of time travel!

Like so many people today, I have embraced the idea of electronic recipes. I have an app on my phone where I store all my favorite recipes, and I do a lot of searching on the web for new recipes to try. Tonight I was looking for an old favorite that apparently never made it into my electronic app. So I opened the folder where I store hard copies of old recipes. Immediately I started traveling down memory lane.

The first recipe I came across was a hand written recipe that my grandmother had sent me. In the folder were also some emails from her containing recipes as well as chatty conversations about church picnics and painting classes. Most of the recipes are ones I will never make, but since my grandmother passed away in 2003, I will cherish them and hold on to them.

Next I came across a recipe copied from a magazine and given by a friend, someone else I have lost. I was reminded of long conversations sharing stories of our lives as well as recipes. No one else will see the photocopy of that recipe and remember her.

Next was the set of recipes I had typed up and printed when I was dating my husband, planning to prepare a fancy meal to woo him. I guess it worked – 25 years later we are still married!

For several hours I looked through my folder of recipes, remembering loved ones who shared their recipes with me, many of whom I have lost, thinking about various times in my life that had inspired different types of recipes.

I realized that these recipes need to be moved from an old school folder to a scrapbook. I need to write down my memories surrounding each recipe, adding in pictures of the people who shared them. And I need to open it often, taking trips down memory lane inspired by recipes.

My phone app doesn’t inspire the same sort of memories. A recipe found in a google search and stored electronically doesn’t carry the same poignant feelings that a hand written recipe or one embedded in a chatty Email carries. Just something else lost in our upgrades.

Posted in Musings

When I Grow Up…

It’s been almost two months since I wrote my last blog posting. I told myself I would commit to posting, but somehow life got in the way. I look back over two months, and part of me is frustrated that I didn’t make the time to blog, especially when I look at how many jigsaw puzzles I have put together while listening to so many novels. Then I think about what I was doing when I wasn’t listening and playing.

First was the week I spent visiting ICU while someone I love dearly battled with her demons. She lost some fingers, but she is alive to tell the tale.

And the kidney stones that wanted to play.

And the college course I’m taking this quarter.

Plus – Somehow over the past two months I managed to finish the personalized professional development planning course I have been working on for months, finish putting all the early intervention resources into a usable format, created 36 digital badges on three different badging platforms while trying to figure out which one I liked best, created an online course plus 36 google forms while trying to figure out how to administer the badges, started building three online Deaf ed PLCs, rearranged my office, welcomed two new staff members, traveled to several parts of Texas for administrator meetings, finished some guidance documents, and tried to solve all the problems of the world with several groups of coworkers.

I guess I shouldn’t feel so guilty about getting behind in Email. Or not getting the newsletter done monthly.. Or that I haven’t kept up with blogging.

There has got to be an easier way to juggle and deal with the to-do-list, the fires, and still work on what I enjoy working on.

When I grow up, I will figure it all out! Until then, maybe I’ll join Fluffy in her cave and teach her how to do puzzles and create digital badges.

Posted in Musings

The Perception of Ten Short/Long Days

Ten days ago we were finishing up our packing and double checking that we had passports and tickets. Ten days ago we had not experienced the beauty that is London, experienced life in a fourth floor flat after walking miles daily, experienced tube rides and double decker bus rides and cab rides combined with walking miles daily, enjoyed dinner with baby girl in an open air market (after walking miles) while she talked about life in London and a planned trip to Italy. Ten days was way too short a time to truly experience London, even if we walked more than we do in a month at home!

Now we go back to the real world, with ten days of email and phone calls to catch up on, ten days of mail to sort through, ten days of going-ons to be apprised of. Ten days that seemed like no time at all while we were in London will suddenly seem like forever while trying to get caught up.  No tea time, no nap time, no tubes, no baby girl.  Just me and my honey, trying to remember how to behave in the real world, and wondering which tube station we have to walk a mile to before catching the underground to work. Or taking the 25 steps out to the car in the driveway. 

Posted in Musings

Assumptions I should learn not to make!

We are visiting our daughter in London this week, and I figured out very quickly that my prior experiences of life might have been helpful, if I had actually accessed them in my memory banks rather than assuming!   What I have learned from 2 days in London…

Fourth floor flat – this does not necessarily mean there will be an elevator! Lovely little flat, but holy moly, fourth floor means a lot of very steep steps! 

When maps says to turn down a street that doesn’t look like a street, pay closer attention! A lot of those alleys are actually streets – and short cuts!

1/2 mile walk does not necessarily equal 1/2 mile – especially if you ignore the alleys that are actually streets. 12,099 steps and 5 miles by noon! Wow! 

Going out in search of breakfast at 8:30 AM on a Saturday gets you nothing but grocery stores. When you just buy groceries and head home, all of the breakfast joints start opening – at 9am. 

Trying to pick up take away lunch at 11:30 to take home with you gets you nothing but breakfast foods. Back to the grocery store, and all the lunch places open at noon on the way home. 

Climbing 4 flights of steep stairs after walking 5 miles… I wonder if the pizza hut next door would let me lay down under their tables? 

Going to the local chippie for dinner requires more thought than should be assumed. How hard could it be to order fish and chips? Unless you know the difference between cod, haddock, plaice, skate, and a few other choices, it isn’t that hard! 

And back up the steps! 

I will either spend this week bored because I won’t leave the flat (not the steps again) or I will be very fit and toned from all of the walking – if somewhat lame from the blisters! 

At least the view is fabulous from the flat.

Posted in Musings

Rambling thoughts

This week I am taking a detour, spending the week closing up the house of someone I love who has to be away for awhile. There are so many thoughts running through my mind! Life is full of choices, and sometimes the most seemingly innocuous choice can have extremely huge consequences.  That tiny little choice has a huge ripple effect, ending with a tidal wave of consequences that impact so many people. 

It makes me wonder about choices I have made in my life, decisions I thought were little ones. I know full well I didn’t think through all of the possible consequences, didn’t always consider who would feel the impact.  So how do I change that? 

I am picturing this huge flow chart for every decision I make.  If, then, unless, except, when the moon is in the seventh hour! My brain isn’t wired that way. 

It is going to take a concerted effort on my part, with some intentional thought processing and pondering, to help my brain get wired that way. The people I love deserve it.