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I’m a once-single mum of two boys (4 and 8) who was ‘attempting the ordinary’ after conceiving my second son by donor. I'm now married and pregnant and its complicated - again. These are my anonymous ramblings about life, love, parenting and the rest – emptying my head of the weird, the wonderful and the mundane. Hope you enjoy.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

The trouble with e-mail, self-employment and old cars...

It doesn't seem to matter how many seminars/webinars or any other kind of -inars I listen too, I can't seem to break the habit of checking my e-mails before I do anything else. I know its bad, I know it eats time, I know nothing can be that urgent or someone would've phoned, and I know I certainly don't need to keep checking them every 5 minutes once the computer is on, but I still do it. In fact today, I checked my e-mail first thing, found a webinar I'd missed and listened to a whole hour of it, which began with telling me not to check my e-mails first. Ahh, the irony.


So this morning, instead of doing anything on my list of work tasks, I have:
  1. Checked my e-mails - at least 10 times
  2. Checked the 'Facebay' local e-bay site everytime someone posted something new to see if there was anything cheap for the kids christmas presents - at least 20 times 
  3. Had phone conversation with my mechanic to find out that the bill for mending the car was going to be £400 more than his original quote - not his fault as they found something else wrong, but if I'd have known that at the beginning, I'd have got a new car. (Hence item 2)
  4. Texted my friend to see if she can look after DS2 while DS1 and I go to London in December. She can't.
  5. Got a quote from Tesco's car insurance to get 300 free clubcard points. (Because item 3 has left me wondering if we're going to have to cancel Christmas)
  6. Switched DS1s Pay Monthly phone to a Pay & Go, as he never uses it since his Dad stopped him having it at night (a long and challenging story that was), so it will save me another £10 a month (Because of item 3).
It sounds like more when I write it down, but it still feels like a thorough waste of the two and a half hours I've had since I dropped DS2 off at the childminders. These are the joys of self-employment working from home. The cycle goes something like this:

Feel like you're wasting time, feel bad about it, waste time feeling bad about wasting time....repeat ad guiltiam

Sometimes I think I'm not cut out for self-employment, but sometimes I think I just have impossibly high standards and I do actually achieve a lot more than I give myself credit for. I mean, hey, I've attended a webinar today on the use of social media to create more customers, and updated my business facebook page as a result - surely that's work, even if I am just sitting here?

I think I'm partly drifting because I'm still so tired after being ill at the end of last week. It was horrible, got it Thursday, couldn't move for being sick, Mum was away and GN was ill with it too, so had to rely on friends and neighbours to take DS1 to school and feed the kids. Fortunately, all were brilliant beyond the call of duty. DS2 conveniently was not ill with it when he left to go to his Dad's on Saturday morning, and then threw up all over him on Saturday night - wrong to feel just ever so slightly pleased about that?! We are all better now thank goodness - mind you, I said that after being ill two weeks ago, so not counting my chickens, or dettol wipes for that matter. Nothing like a good bout of norovirus to make you chuck the eco-friendly stuff in the bin and head back to bleach.

Back to the work - I'm also a bit wary of starting anything as the publisher I work with said they'd phone today re next years work. Cue nervous nail biting and 'will I have an income next year?' thoughts.  I said I was available between 10 and 2 and the e-mail I got back was 'okay I'll give you a buzz' but didn't actually say what time - maybe she thinks I'm sitting her doing nothing all day. And obviously in this case, she would be largely right. In fairness though, I could call her so that's no excuse really.

I do this a lot when I'm tired - sit at my computer doing inane things, in a bid to convince myself I'm actually working. Oh god, I just remembered I checked The Independent's news about the X factor too - serious serious time wasting. I wish I was the kind of person who could sleep during the day, then I could just go and have a nap and try again in an hour, which I suspect would be much more productive. Unfortunately though, I'm not, so I'm off to get some lunch, refocus, phone that publisher and try to get something done after that in the 5 minutes that will be left until I have to pick up DS2 from the childminder.

Repeat to self: NO MORE E-MAIL, NO MORE E-MAIL, NO MORE E-MAIL....

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