Chapter 10 – Establishing a Healthy Daily Structure

Happy Friday!

The Puppy Death Farts Book Club are reading Coping with Trauma Related Dissociation by Suzette Boon, Kathy Steele and Onno Van Der Hart. It’s a lot easier with friends, and everybody is welcome.

Chapter 10 begins by spelling out the benefits of daily and weekly routines. Structured days can help you keep track of time, worry less about “what’s next”, and reduce the risk of intrusions and switching.

“Daily and weekly structures should include a regular time to get up and go to bed, regular and healthy meals, necessary chores (for instance, shopping, cooking, paying bills, cleaning), time for relationships and social contacts, personal (“me”) time, inner check-ins, physical exercise, fun, and other safely stimulating activities.”

Time management can be tricky, and dissociative identity disorder adds some unique challenges.

Parts can be conflicted about how you spend your time, with different goals and desires. You may have dozens of unfinished projects, and probably give yourself shit about your lack of productivity. Parts may resent each other and battle for time, ignoring priorities like work or doctors appointments. It’s also difficult to meet commitments when your sense of time is jumbled, and dissociative amnesia is in the mix.

That said, don’t go overboard!

Racing from one activity to the next – and exhausting yourself trying to do everything – isn’t the answer. Burnout, frustration and conflict are the results. I regularly fall into the trap of overworking as a distraction from memories or feelings. It feels good to get shit done, it feels valuable, and the emotional rush of feeling useful can get addictive.

The thing is, overworking might make your bank balance look good, but it shouldn’t be at the expense of the team’s emotional well-being.  The more you tighten your grip, Tarkin, the more star systems will slip through your fingers.

Do the work.

This week’s homework is to create a weekly structure as a team. The chapter includes instructions, questions to ask yourself during the process, and how to handle common conflicts. If you don’t have the book, check out the how-to post coming later that combines this advice and the principles of Agile development.

Organizing your weekly structure and prioritizing your goals it isn’t an exercise you do once and drop. Like always, the more you use your use your tools and iterate on your process, the easier and more effective they’ll be.

Glhf. You got this.

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