I am trying to master the art of self-discipline. After 37 years of loafing, procrastinating, and only getting anything done if there's an iminent danger of something really bad happening if I don't (ie children dying from salmonella poisoning because I haven't cleaned the fridge/Inland Revenue stinging me for £100 because I haven't done my tax return/HMB contract being terminated because I haven't made my deadline etc) I have decided to embrace the concept of a steady, reliable and non-panic-fuelled output.
(Well, that’s this week’s excuse for my appalling blog-presence anyway, and I think you’ll agree it's very clever. So, my non appearance isn’t because I’m a lazy old slacker—oh no. It’s because I'm actually being virtuous and diligent.)
It’s very hard, this self-discipline business. I can see why I haven't got the hang of it before now. Basically, what it means is that I have to take the children to school and not hang around for 45 minutes analysing the issues of the day with the Mum Mafia. I have to come straight home (do not pass Sainsburys. Do not spend £200) where I am allowed to make a cup of tea (but not sit down in the kitchen to drink it and 'just quickly check my horoscope in the paper'), glance at the post and check emails-- once. Blog surfing is forbidden, as is youtube lingering, itunes browsing or continuing the online quest for the perfect pair of shoes to wear to my brother's wedding. Then I have to go upstairs. And write. And keep writing until I've done 3000 words.
On the upside, I don’t have to sweep the Cheerios up from the kitchen floor, clean the toothpaste tidemark out of the basins or go and make beds (does anyone know if there's an age where children legally have to start doing this for themselves?) The dilemma of staring out of the window and thinking 'it's a really nice day... maybe I should get a load of towels in the wash?' has been largely taken away. On the downside I'm going to end up a friendless recluse with a house carpeted in breakfast cereal and terrible shoes. BUT with a book, delivered on schedule and minus a small mental breakdown.
It's got to be worth a try?