New Year, Old Problem: Time Management

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Hello, minions, and happy holidays! I’ve always wanted to say that…minions. It just rolls of the keyboard. This is probably my favorite time of year—those all important moments as we teeter on the cusp of a new year. It’s ripe with possibilities! 2012 saw me enter my second year at Columbia College Chicago and shoot films about roller derby, a crayon dream, and a melancholic teddy bear. There are many things to be grateful for and excited about, past, present, and future.

But lately, something has been on my mind, and I bet you can relate to it: time management and expectations for my filmmaking this coming New Year. I often struggle with my time management between coursework, pre-production, blogging—not to mention living, finding time for friends and recreation, and, god forbid, living a balanced life.

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I sat in a lobby of 1104 S. Wabash the other day and totally stressed out thinking about how I’m going to prep myself for the real world in 2013. I’m crossing the halfway point. It’s big picture thinking time…that is, if I hadn’t started already. I’ve got to get my work and name out there while prepping more movies, writing more scripts, and nailing down a thesis. Now you see why I’m thinking about time management.

Even when you are getting overwhelmed, you can’t over think these things. Yes, you have to balance your time, but you can’t necessarily get bogged down in planning. Sometimes, we schedule and schedule and schedule and never do anything. If we don’t force ourselves into new situations, we have fewer and fewer opportunities for growth, and our stories become flat. Recycled emotions result in work resembling formulaic sitcoms. Not good for quality filmmaking.

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Recently, I was able to participate in a choir reunion concert. I sang in high school and hadn’t done it in years. Had I over scheduled myself, I would have found a reason not to do it, but instead, I forced it in my schedule. I made it work. In doing that, I had a wonderful experience, one I could grow from. One I could translate into a story.

So here’s to all of you out there who sometimes struggle with conflicting and competing urges to work on your films and balance obligations to your families, your relationships, and your mental and physical health. We have to create the same way that we have to breathe. There is not a schedule crazy enough to hold us back from scratching that itch. It’s not easy! But we do it. We find a way.