When Other Priorities Sneak In

…that’s my excuse, and I’m sticking with it! And really, it’s the truth.

Apartment buildingOne of those other priorities is my husband’s job. He’s self-employed, and most of what he does is take care of the two apartment buildings we own. DH has always either been self-employed, or worked for small businesses, so has never had a 401k or anything like that. Those apartments are his retirement fund – and what’s currently paying for our daughter’s education. We were paying a real estate agent to do the basic property management for us, but recently decided we’d be better off doing this ourselves. So even though DH’s business has been established for several years, I’ve had to take on a bunch of start-up tasks – things we didn’t need when we had another company doing property management. This includes things like designing and ordering FOR RENT signs and business cards, setting up new forms, designing and placing ads, purchasing a domain name and setting up a quickie one-page website. None of this is difficult for me, as I’m a professional graphic designer, but it all takes time. And since we currently have several vacancies in one of our buildings, it needed to be done ASAP.

Then I spent a good bit of time with friends this week. Sure, I could have blown off some of those friends, but the thing is, I have some other goals that aren’t part of my stated ROW80 goals. One of those is to be more present in real life, and to make friends a priority. That doesn’t mean I’ll drop my writing any time someone wants to go out for a beer, but I do make plans with friends now (which I’d gotten out of the habit of doing), and when I do, I keep them. When someone asks me to do something social, I don’t just default to “no” (something I had gotten into the habit of doing) especially if that someone is my husband.

Yesterday, I could have finished up my ROW80 goals. Could have gotten in one more workout, done some decluttering, written that last 1500 words to hit my goal of 4,000, and maybe even tackled some estate planning. Instead, I went to Cincinnati to see longtime (as opposed to “old” :D) friend Jim Winter and shoot the breeze with him about writing. Great fun, and I made two new friends!

After I got home, DH and I went to the Italian Festival with three friends I’ve been joining for trivia once a week. This is something I’d normally shun, as I’m not fond of crowds, but the food was good, as was the company, and I managed to tolerate the rest.

ROW80Logo175Which brings me back to my ROW80 goals. I’m not going to worry about the decluttering or the estate planning book this week, as I need to do more work for the apartment business. The other two goals will remain the same:

  • Writing: 4000 words
  • Fitness: 4x

What about you – have you had other priorities sneak in on your ROW80 or other goals lately? Know anyone in the Dayton area who might want a clean, well-maintained, one-bedroom apartment? Whether or not you’re doing ROW80, how have you been progressing toward whatever goals you might have? Please share – I’d love to hear from you!

Jennette Marie Powell writes stories about ordinary people in ordinary places, who do extraordinary things and learn that those ordinary places are anything but. In her Saturn Society novels, unwilling time travelers do what they must to make things right... and change more than they expect. You can find her books at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords, Kobo, iTunes, and more.

12 Responses to \

  1. be more present in real life <– I need to do a better job of this. I'm actually looking for an apartment for my in-laws so they can be closer to the hospital while my FIL gets some treatments. Daytona sounds great, they'd love it, but it's definitely not closer, lol. Have a great week. Keep your real life present and I'll try and do the same.

  2. Oh SJ, I guess I should’ve been clearer about the apartments: they’re in Dayton, OHIO! Good wishes again for your FIL – that will be plenty of real life for you, I’m thinking!

  3. I didn’t have any priorities sneak in to ruin any goals I had, but I had a rejection that pretty much tanked my writing. And yes, that rejection was on Bite Me. It’s amazing how quickly hopes can get crushed!

    But I’m fine and will get through this (like I have a choice – haha!).

    Wish I’d have known about your apartment when my daughter was looking. She’s seems happy in Fairborn now, though, and I certainly don’t want to move her again! 🙂

  4. Hi, Jennette,
    I, too want to be more present in real life and make friends a priority, so I think your weekend sounds great. Plus, you snuck in time to talk about writing. Friends + writing talk = win/win.

    Good for you and your husband with the apartments!

  5. Stacy, GRR on the rejection! Especially after you did so much to whittle it down to meet their wordcount requirements! I do know someone who can help you with a cover if you decide to self-publish. Bummer too that I didn’t know your daughter was in the market for a place, but glad she’s somewhere she likes!

    Pat, so true! Friends + writing talk is always great – and thanks!

  6. Being more present is something I try to keep in mind. If I’m struggling over what to put first, I usually ask myself which thing is finite–or something I’d probably regret missing. That usually works. 🙂 Hope you have a great week, Jennette!

  7. Life and presence has been my priorities the last week or two, as well. They haven’t been sneaky, and I don’t mind. I needed to shift my focus, and I loved all the time spent in various ways with my husband and children, and resetting our living room so that it can return to its intended function as a gathering place for all of us during the cooler months, with areas for relaxation, entertainment, creation,reading, conversation and play emerging…

    I finished the editing notes for one WIP, and added a beta-reading for a friend. I wrote almost nothing, for a few days, but am slowly finding new words again.

    I hope the time and focus were productive and nourishing, and that, eventually, they feed your writing. =D

  8. Well, there’s always school, which all three of us at Chateau Nita attend. Ye Olde Day Jobbe, which now has some interesting changes coming. There’s exercise. There’s a postwar cottage (the aforementioned Chateau Nita) that likes to show its age at inopportune moments.

    And then this morning, I ran across an opportunity to apply my IT skills on a freelance basis, something I wouldn’t mind spinning into a business.

    Somewhere in there, I still find time to write.

  9. Coleen, asking if it’s something I’d regret missing later is a good tactic, and one I’ve used before!

    Shan, it was mostly the apartment stuff that sneaked up on me, and that should slack off soon. The rest, is a matter of rejuggling – and definitely worth it!

    Jim, you are kicking it on your goals! I would find it really hard to toss school in on top of my other priorities, so hats off to you!

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