My Non-Forced Non-Linear Trust-Myself Time Management Scheme

I never have enough time to do all the things I want to do, and that makes my rational let’s-get-things-done side fight with my let’s-play-and-make-art side. It’s an uneven fight.

Have you ever seen a child have a tantrum in a public place? They scream, fall down on the floor, and pump their arms and thump their feet. Then, when the parent tries to stand them up by grabbing an arm, the kid uses it as a pivot point to spin around on. That’s the way my muse acts when she doesn’t get her way.

I try to avoid it.

The “problem” is that I get lost chasing ideas down rabbit holes a lot, but I just gotta chase those rabbits because they lead me to piles carrots and sacks of gold. No wait, that’s what it feels like to my muse. I love chasing rabbits because they reward me with new ideas and energy.  And listen, I’m like one of Pavlov’s dogs. If I get rewarded for a behavior, then that’s what I’ll do from then on.

Unlike parents of tantrum throwing kids, I know when I’m beat, so rabbit chasing takes priority and  I draw or write after that. This is a hard thing to balance because it unleashes crazy energy. The kind of energy that pulls you along in the direction it wants to go, and not the well behaved kind that you can hop on and ride to where you planned to go. (I changed from the rabbit to a horse metaphor in those last sentences, in case you got lost.)

With all this in mind, I looked at lots of time management systems but none of them are meant for people who run on tantrum throwing muse power, so I invented this non-forced, non-linear, trust-myself-to-do-what-needs-to-be-done system that doesn’t stress me or make my muse hurl herself onto the floor.

For example, this post was written quite a while ago but it didn’t feel done, but today, after I’d chased a few rabbits, my energy went right to it. I reworked the entire thing, and now it’s better, which is another reward. (Make it a chocolate chip next time, Mr. P..) So there you have it. I don’t power my creative side at all, I just hang on for the ride.

After I arrive at my destination, all the rabbits and horses go off to graze, leaving me to do the work, the brats. I’m happy with things this way, though, which is probably what I’m searching for in the first place.

My curvy path.

My curvy path.


I’m sure this illustration makes it easier to understand! No? Oh dear, you’ll have to take my word for it then.

I’m guessing the point is that knowing what your process is, and sticking to it even  if your friends glance at each with raised eyebrows when they think you’re not looking, is a huge big deal. So, my pencil friends, bravely walk down that curvy path, and that path, and that path. You’ll get somewhere eventually.

Walking on with ya,

Walking down my curvry path.

Me, walking on. (ps – I gave myself better hair.)

A note to everyone who’s written to me:  Thank you so much for encouraging me to keep posting my drawing lessons, and my life lessons too. I truly love to write these posts, but it’s knowing that you enjoy them that helps me pick up the ball after I’ve dropped it again, and again and again. (Geez, life is hard, and humbling.) Hugs and kisses to you all … and you know who you are.

A note to eyebrow raisers: Just so you know, artists are supernatural sensory-intake machines. They know what you know before you know it, if you know what I mean, and they are never not looking. Don’t worry though, after blabbing all we knew a few times as kids, most of us know how to be discreet now. (Unless we just want to mess with you.)

About Carol

I’m an artist, an accidental author, and lover of life. I grew up in Yorktown, Indiana, and I’ve been writing (and drawing) this website since 1999.

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11 Responses to My Non-Forced Non-Linear Trust-Myself Time Management Scheme

  1. Ahna McCue says:

    I have been following you for a long time. I think you are great and the stuff you write about I also can recognize. LOL. I am also from Indiana, Greenwood. Love that you are a native of the corn state. LOL

    Ahna McCue

    • Carol says:

      Hi Ahna,

      I guess we’ll never get the corn out of our blood. We are the real children of the corn!!! I have great memories of running through that cornfield beside our house each spring, and each day I could run faster and farther.

      Thank you for saying such sweet things about my writing.

  2. Shirley Avery says:

    Your art is wonderful! What a gift! Thanks for sharing it with us. Keep that ball rolling. :)


  3. Aletta says:

    I love your drawings! My 8 year old wants to learn to draw and I’m going to use your beginner instructions.

  4. Melissa says:

    I miss your posts. I keep checking, to no avail:)

    I hope you are well.

    • Carol says:

      Sweet Melissa, you’re a very kind reader, and I thank you for caring. I’m still here, and still love to write about my drawing adventures. And I’m getting back to it bit by bit, post by post. :)

    • Carol says:

      I’m still here Mrs. Lemon Peppergrass. And I have a life lesson to share! It is this: “Don’t ever stop doing the things you love to do, because you’ll have hell to pay trying to get back to ’em.”

      However, this probably only applies to people like me who have always got off track rather easily and dramatically. :)

  5. Jesse says:

    I just read a couple of your blogs and found them comforting! Its good to know I’m not the only one who finds herself chasing rabbits! Ive always been the one who in the middle if conversations chases a butterfly, lizzard, or what ever then come back to the conversation! I use to get upset when people let me know how ” annoying ” I was, now….I figure if they get annoyed its their problem. The people who love me know me, others…… I love your tutorials and am always open and grateful for new tips, ideas, tutorials, and tribe members!!!!!

    • Carol says:

      Welcome fellow rabbit chaser and tribe member Jesse! You can tell who we are by that dreamy look in our eyes. And I think we’re way more interesting than those boring ol’ straight line thinkers … I mean lizards and butterflies … ya just gotta go look!!!! :)

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