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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Jess~ Offline
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Creating a schedule/routine with an unstable life? - October 12th 2017, 06:19 AM

Lately I've just felt extremely in over my head in my life. It all happened so quickly too, just everything caught up with me.
A few months ago, I had a steady routine of when I'd generally sleep, when I'd wake up, when I'd eat, when and how I'd workout. It was perfect. But then school started. Then I got a boyfriend. Then I started my job. And before I knew it my life was chaos.

It doesn't make sense, because I've always been an unorganized person and I was proud of my spontaneity. But now, it feels like the one thing I want in my life is stability. I think maybe it's just that spontaneity is great in small doses, but when your entire life is revolving around unpredictable and uncontrollable random work shifts and group projects and huge tests, it just gets overwhelming. Don't even get me started on dating in the midst of all that.

I'm trying to make sense of it all. I broke up with my boyfriend. I'm currently cleaning and rearranging my room, which will probably take another month before I'm entirely done, just because of how much crap there is to go through. I'm throwing out a lot of old stuff that I thought I would hold on to forever. If I were a snake, this is me shedding out of my skin, in a way.

My life is so unorganized that I've even been slacking on hygiene.

Let me break it down. I have classes Monday through Thursday. Monday/Wednesday classes are morning classes. Tuesday/Thursday classes are evening classes. I work four days a week so far, and it's often the closing shift that goes until midnight. Usually they schedule me to work after class on Tues/Thurs, which means I'm out of the house for at least ten hours. I also usually have to work Saturday and Sunday, and doing the closing shift two days in a row is hell.
When I come home from work that late, I am exhausted and starving, but there's usually nothing healthy and good to eat at that hour, so I'll usually just give up and eat whatever is available then fall asleep at 2 in the morning to the TV. I'll eat in bed while watching TV, and 9 times out of 10 I'll be so exhausted that I won't even force myself to get up to brush my teeth after eating. I am disgusted with myself, and I wake up feeling disgusting.
Tues/Thurs I purposefully got evening classes so I could sleep in, but my parents of course decided to force me to take my brothers to school in the morning on those days. (That's another story, but I take them to and from school for the majority of the week and they don't even pay for my gas. But they pay my grandma for two weeks worth of gas just to pick them up for one day each week.)
After coming home from taking them to school Tues/Thurs, that's usually the time that I do any homework I need to do.
I'm always super behind in my homework because of the way my work schedule is in relation to my classes, (when I have to work right after class, I can't go home and do my homework right away like I used to) so I'm obviously constantly stressed.

I used to have a set shower schedule as well, but now I don't even know when I'm supposed to shower. Like that's how lost I am. I can't just shower everyday because my hair reacts super badly to that. But if I try to shower every other day, sometimes it'll fall on a day that I just don't have time.
Don't even get me started on working out. I hate myself the most for letting this one go. I was making such amazing progress and now it's all gone, because I've been so tired and stressed and low on time to do anything. Not to mention my brother took the weights I was using. I'm so sick of trying to start working out again, only to be too tired and skip it for days on end.
And food has been an issue in my house for as long as I can remember. We buy maybe two healthy foods: tuna and eggs. Trust me, I ate the fuck out of those two foods, tried experimenting to keep things interesting. And it still, obviously, got boring and gross to eat the same things over and over. Other than that, and the rare fruits and vegetables they might buy, we have nothing that I don't feel disgusting eating. I can't remember the last time we ate a dinner that didn't come from a box in the freezer.

Here's what I want...
-a clean, organized room (which will take a month)
-a set weekly schedule of school and work (work changes every week)
-set study/homework time
-a set shower time
-sleep schedule
(which will be impossible considering my ever changing schedule)
-a set routine for working out (but will be hard to stick to because of my unpredictable sleep and work schedule)
-meal prep (which won't happen for a few months, because i want to save up money and do research and plan weeks ahead so that i don't waste money on starting something i won't stick to)

Basically just a time for everything. Does that sound attainable or is it too much? Like I said, I'm not used to being organized, but it's necessary at this point.
I honestly have no idea where to start though. So much of this is connected to each other, and since so many things on that list could change due to things like exhaustion, extra homework/work shifts, etc. I'm afraid it might not even be possible to organize my life right now.
But at the same time, I'm so sick of constantly being confused, stressed, upset, depressed, and tired that there's no way I can continue going on the way I'm going.
This was basically just a really long way of saying I need help.
What can I do?

i don't know what i'm supposed to do
haunted by the ghost of you
  (#2 (permalink)) Old
cynefin Offline

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Re: Creating a schedule/routine with an unstable life? - October 13th 2017, 01:16 PM

It's a lot to work on but it definitely sounds attainable over time. Would it help for you to organize one or two parts of your life, and then try to organize a few more once you form new habits? For instance, you could work on your sleep and shower schedule first and then work towards organizing your room.

I know that everyone is different but I reorganized different aspects of my life slowly and that helped me. I did my sleep schedule first, and then did a few other things.

Maybe you could try giving yourself a nighttime routine. Even if you eat late, you could eat in front of the TV and then get ready for bed. It can sometimes be difficult if you're really tired, but if you think about wanting routine it may help push you to get back up. If you do things in the same order each time you'll adapt enough to add another thing you want to work on. You can even break it up. For instance, while you're waiting for your food to cook you could wash your face and change into comfortable clothing. Then, after you eat you can brush your teeth and do anything else you need to do. Is there anything that helps you feel calm or sleepy? Listening to noise makers or using a hand lotion could help.

You said you can't shower daily because of your hair and it's hard to get the time to shower every other day. What time are your morning classes? Could you get up a little earlier and shower before them? Showering could help wake you up as well if you're not a morning person. If you ever wanted to shower daily, you could get a cap to keep your hair dry.

Are your classes one after another or do you have any time between them? If you have time between them, maybe you could go to the library or find a quiet place on your campus to work on your homework. Do your instructors give you time during class to work on things? Some will do that and if they do it might reduce stress to do the homework before you leave your class.

As for working out, you might be able to do small things in the meantime while you're working on everything else. For example, you could do a few floor exercises in the morning and some calming stretches at night before you have to go to sleep. You could do small things in your daily life, such as parking farther away from your destination or taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

You said you don't know where to start. What aspects are most important to you, or would be easiest to tackle first?

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