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Friday, September 11, 2009

What motivates me

I am a procrastinator by nature. I have always been like that. It's not that I don't want to do the task (except when it comes to house cleaning) it's just that I have to have a motivation to do it. (Like company coming over so I have to dust!) Most people do not work well under pressure, but pressure is a wonderful motivator. If someone gives me a project to do and says "Get to it when you have a chance", there is a good chance that I will not get to it very quickly. However, if they tell me I need it by such and such a date, then I know I have to get it done by then. Now that doesn't mean that I may start on it right away.

When I was in college and the professor would give us a project to write, I would wait until a couple weeks (or days) before it was due to start writing. The stressors of needing it to be done quickly was what motivated me not only to get it done but also got my "creative juices" flowing. I can't explain why that happens but it always worked for me. I am the same way when working on a challenge or designing a quilt. The closer it gets to the deadline the more creative I get. My husband is just the opposite. When he had to write a paper, he would get it done way before it was due. He can't understand why I procrastinate. The problem I had when I did that, was that each time I would proof the paper, I would find a different way to write it and would keep rewriting it. I was never satisfied with it. If I waited until later, then I had to finally say enough!

I retired from education after 25 years of working in Special Education in 2007. The last few years I was working, I was doing two jobs, my education job and my quilting job. I would come home from work, eat dinner and then start sewing, writing patterns, or designing. I knew I had only a few hours to get my quilting jobs done since I had to work 8 hours a day in school. I seemed to get both jobs done (with not too much sleep). Now that I am retired, I don't seem to get as much done. I have difficulty focusing on doing one task at a time; I get easily distracted. That is my biggest problem with working from home. There are so many things that I can be doing besides the current project.

I think people are born with different inner "mechanisms" (for lack of a better word). Some are very organized and other aren't. Some are night people and some morning. Some are procrastinators and others are not. I have tried different ways to get myself organized, reading books, advice from people, but never seem to pick up those skills. I just don't think it is in my nature. Maybe I don't have the motivation to change. Whatever it is, I have resigned myself to the fact that that is the way I am. I still get things done. I could write myself a schedule and try to keep it but chances are I will do it for a few days and then go back to my old ways (or lose the schedule)! So, take a good look at yourself, embrace the way you are. Don't let other people tell you that you should be such and such when it isn't part of you!

Now to my latest project. I finished the top of the Hoffman quilt I was working on. I was unable take a picture of it with the borders, but I did photo the pieced top. The block is Rob Peter to Pay Paul. I use templates by John Flynn to make the quilt (which I sell on my website). I had to take time off to write a couple patterns so I did not get a chance to quilt it. It is being sent off to Hoffman today so they can quilt it for a trade show in Las Vegas next week. The fabric collection is called Treasures from the East. It is a beautiful collection of colors. As soon as the pattern is posted on Hoffman's website, I will let you know.

Well, on to my next project; working with Paula Nadelstern's new collection, Nuance for McCalls Quilting. I'll post my progress as I get it done. Take time to look at the collection on Benartex's website

Everyday do what you love and love what you do. 'Til tomorrow, Toby

1 comment:

ch said...

When I read this I thought to myself - I could have written this whole article - amazing - sounds just like me - I feel better now! Thanks!