I set my intentions for 2012 with the idea that I would finish more projects than I started.
I did not, however, take an inventory or keep track of my work in a systematic fashion, so while my house is a bit more orderly than it was at this time last year, I don’t know if I accomplished my general goal, if I broke even (so to speak), or if I now have more unfinished projects than I did at the beginning of 2013.
I suspect that at best, I broke even, so when I saw the title of Ray Fisman’s article at Slate.com: “How To Make Better New Year’s Resolutions,” I was curious to see what he had to share that I might be able to use.
Ray Fisman is, according to the little bio blurb at Slate, “the Lambert Family professor of social enterprise and director of the Social Enterprise Program at the Columbia Business School,” and his take on New Year’s resolutions is, in part, formed by the work of Eldar Shafir and Sendhil Mullainathan who have co-written the as-not-yet released title: Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much.
I am lucky in many regards in that presently the only scarcity I experience with any regularity is one of my own devising: time, and the fix for that is really pretty simple: take on fewer obligations and start fewer projects.
Over the past few weeks, I have spent more time than I would like detangling a fiber “yarn slug” in an effort to unravel the pieces of assorted, partially completed projects that have become hopelessly entangled.
While I try to be philosophical about the time spent attempting to aright this fiber mess, it is not the most satisfying of endeavors, and it seldom feels like time well spent. Complicating matters is the fact that I very much like many of the elements I am attempting to extricate from the tangle and would very much like to see them come to some sort of creative fruition.
In an effort to reclaim the time, space, and psychic energy that these assorted unfinished project consume, I am going to spend the first two months of 2013 finishing as many of the myriad unfinished objects that are lurking throughout my house as I can. Any new ideas I’ve got will simply have to be sketched out as fully as I can without actually picking up hook and yarn and live their lives in a notebook dedicated to sketching out new ideas.
While the number and scope of the of unfinished objects I have is daunting, I think it is well past time for me to tackle them.
I decided to start by writing a list of “must do’s” on one side of a 3″x5″ index card at the beginning of the day. When I ran out of space, the list was done.
In a matter of moments, the card was completely filled, and one of the items on the year’s first “must do” list was to finish the previously long-fogotten six sudoku afghan.
Yesterday, I had completed the sixth and final sudoku I would need for the project; after dinner, I joined the sudoku into two three-sudoku panels. One of the things on the “must do” list was to photograph the two panels.
Here is one:
and here is the other:
I then turned my attention to all of the non-crochet tasks on the must do list, and shortly after lunch, I had completed all of them and was ready to take hook to yarn and work on the crochet items still on the “must do list,” and I finished the six sudoku afghan shortly before sundown:
I had to resist the urge to tart it up, but I did not resist the urge to try solving at least one of the puzzles:
I don’t expect that I will get something of this magnitude done every day, but tomorrow, I will get out a fresh index card, make a new list, and see what I can do.