For as long as I can remember, I've been a person who hates to say no. Still am.
I'm sure no one wants to let someone (or their self) down but I have it in my brain that if I say no to a project or to helping someone with something, I've really let that person and/or myself down.
In high school and college, I was always working on a project....multiple projects (at once) actually. I would push myself to go above and beyond and not only accept when people asked me to help but to offer myself to help. Because I've been doing this, people know me in this way. This means they'll often come to me and ask for that help. Of course, I say yes. I not only say yes but I say yes when I likely have too many things going on to begin with.
Now, don't get me wrong, I don't say yes just for the hell of it. I say yes because I want to help. I love being busy, working on something, and to be there for other people. These projects are often beneficial for me as well. It means I get to be in a show, a scene, or being a player in their plan and it means that I'm (hopefully) making someone's situation better and easier for them.
Senior year of high school, my typical day began at 6 am. I'd head to school, go to all my classes, head to my after school theatre program where I'd take another class, then head to rehearsal afterwards. This would be rehearsal for a show at that theatre or a show with an adult theatre company in town. After all this, I'd be home around 10:30/11:00 pm and get ready to do it all again the next day.
Yeah, I'd be working on two shows at once on top of my class load.
And I lived for it. I was obsessed with being involved with so many things.
This followed me to college. Freshman year we had a project at the end of the year were we had to direct a short scene. We were also called upon by classmates to be in theirs. Typically you'd be in maybe one or two others on top of the one you directed. I was in six. Yep, six. And again, lived for it. Honestly, I would have been in more if I had been asked. Other people around me however, realized that I was in a bit too deep. I did too but I honestly I just brushed it off and kept trucking.
So how am I doing with this today? Whelp, I'm currently working three part time jobs and am rehearsing for two MN Fringe Shows. Has much changed? Yes and no. (!)
I'm still doing a bunch of projects at once. Still wanting to be involved with anything and everything but now that I'm not in school, things are a little easier to manage. I'm saying yes to things but they're all in my control now, if that makes sense. I really enjoyed being in school but that was a "requirement". I was taking some classes because I had to to get that degree. Now my schedule is filled with things I specifically sought out.
I'm still spending an hour here and there with my planner puzzle piecing together my upcoming month.
I love my planner.
I'm happy. I still get the occasional 'come on Chloé' look from my friends. They do it out of love and safety of my sanity. But, hey, this is me. Maybe one day, I'll only be working on one project at a time but all of the things I have going on keeps life interesting and always moving. I'm not overwhelmed...yet. And I'm sure there will be a point again where I am but it's all a part of it. If that overwhelming/stressed feeling pays of in the end, then it's worth it. If I get to be a part of amazing projects and meet great people, that's all I could ask for. And I hope that people continue to feel that they can come to me and ask for help or ask me to be involved with their projects. Maybe I'll just take a touch more time to consider it in the grand scheme.
I'm still figuring it all out. Five projects at a time. :)