Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Diagnosis: Routine

One of my favorite projects I did in college was an analysis on the daily routine of Napoleon Bonaparte. Very fascinating man. Very misunderstood. I'd like to think that my daily routine is a glimpse into my genius. Who knows, you may see such writing in my memiors...
For the most part, every day is very predictable. I get up at the same time every morning... or rather my alarm clocks (yes plural) begin chiming and slapping me in the face at about 6:30. 6:30 does not welcome me out of bed but rather merely begins the prioritizing thought process of "what part of my self-beautification process can be sacrificed today?" "Can I get away with wearing my hair up again?"(+25 min sleep time) "If I wear pants I don't have to shave my legs" (+10 min sleep time). You see how this can become quite a lengthy process which inevitably ends up with me getting out of bed somewhere around 7:30 and about 15 minutes late to work. It's ok. I'm salary. I don't take smoke breaks so that's my retribution.
Once I'm at work, again the routine begins. I bring my yogurt and string cheese to my desk and check emails (personal and work) and any voicemails. I create a checklist of the things I want to do that day and finally start on the projects for the day by about 10:00am. Sometimes clients come in. Sometimes we have adoptions. Those are the exciting days. Or the days when we get calls from the hospital about a last minute mommy that didn't quite understand the weight of the decisions she made 9 months prior to this wonderful day in the hospital. "WTH! I'm having a baby?"
I break for lunch routinely at about 12:30. Although it should probably start at 12:00 every day b/c that's when I technically stop doing work. Also the same situation from 5:00-5:30. Who wants to abandon mid-project? I usually use that time to organize my work inbox and create outlines of every possible conversation I had that day with anything related to a client/work. Attorneys keep track of everything. We are required to bill our time by the tenths of the hour. I keep relatively good track of what I spend my time doing (except when it's nonwork related, that is). I wonder if anyone ever reads my time? Maybe my next project should be to see if anyone ever catches on that I've been logging my bathroom time.... (10-100, .1 hour)
The busiest parts of my daily routine are usually around 2:45 and 3:45. The courthouse run is at 3:00 so anything I needed filed that day must be ready by then. And the mail gets taken down at 4:15 so anything I need mailed must be ready by that time as well. These times sometimes sneak up on me in a waive of "oh crap, I need to copy this, get that signed, print this, draft this, serve this..." Anything that gets missed just gets added to tomorrow's to do list...
As previously mentioned, my day slows down at about 4:45/5:00. I would hate to be so busy that I miss the clock hitting 5:30. Jill, our receptionist, routinely calls me at 5:30 to see if I'm leaving on time and we walk out to the parking deck together.
Now there are variables in my days. We hit a busy season, much like accountants. But ours often coincides with the Holidays, Valentine's Day, hurricanes, ice storms.... plus nine months. You get the idea. The next month is looking to be quite busy so that may make for some interesting days of tracking down men throughout the state/country who may or may not have knowingly sired a child in North Carolina.
And that is my routine. There are other routines to follow once I get home as well. As of late, I have started to feel like Tom Hanks in Joe versus the Volcano before he learns he has the "brain tumor". If you haven't seen it, go rent it, great movie with a low budget since Meg Ryan plays three different characters. My recent remedy is quite simple but has done wonders to break the monotony of routine. Most of my day is very quiet. Emails make no noise. People dont talk in the elevators. We spend most of our time devoted to our desks and computers which obviously never talk back. As soon as I get in my car in the morning and in the evening, I crank my stereo up as loud as I can tolerate. I instantly feel as though cold water has been thrown on my face. I am in control in my own little Mirage world. I rejoice in the guitar riffs and embrace the drums as they transport me out of ho-hum world and on to rock steady. The moral of the story kids, is that no matter what genre you choose, never underestimate the power of really really loud music. I only wish I had a better sound system in my car...


  1. ok Kelley, I am so happy that you are blogging. I love how you write. You're letters made me laugh so hard on the mission!

  2. haha. thanks Lyddie. All like 2 letters I sent! I'll do my best to keep it up. I have a feeling it might wane after the initial fun wears off!! I love checking everyone's blogs every day... I feel so informed with everyone's life!

  3. I took your "office" quiz that's off to the side of your blog :), it was fun. Apparently I'm in between being a Jim and a Pam.

  4. I'm so happy to know your routine at work. Now I won't IM you during your "busy" time:)

    You ARE a really GOOD writer! You have so many talents inherited from me, not to mention physical beauty,(sigh).


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