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Miscellaneous thoughts and ramblings
Monday, August 08, 2005
How I Got to Blogging – Part 4.7
(I’m skipping some important stuff about my online life. I may get back and write about it, or not.)

About three weeks ago I enrolled in a program called Strategic Coach, a coaching program for entrepreneurs. My brother-in-law recommended it to me. My brother in law is one of the kindest most thoughtful people I know. I have called him with both business and personal problems for as long as I’ve known him and his advice has always been wise. Oh, and he also owns a Fortune 500 company. So I tend to pay attention to his recommendations.

The Strategic Coach is all about placing boundaries between work and life so that free time can be truly rejuvenating, and work time can be incredibly productive. It’s only been three weeks but I’ve already reorganized my life in ways that are making my wife and kids happy. I don’t want to sound like some kind of wide-eyed zealot that just found a new cult, but so far, I’m very pleased with the results.

Because my evenings have been freer, I’ve been able to take Stretch to and from his swim lessons.

Stretch after swimming
I’ve also realized that I almost never get a chance to spend time alone with each child, and that I wouldn’t unless I scheduled it. So I’ve been scheduling time with each child and letting them pick what they’d like to do with me. (Stretch decided on the marathon bike ride we did two weeks ago. The baby tagged along, but there was still plenty of Dad-Stretch time.)

This evening was time for The Diva (our 7 year-old girl) to decide what she’d like to do with me. She wanted to draw a picture with me.
A budding Rembrandt
I expect calls from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art in the morning.

The other thing I’ve learned is that I was using my time on the web as a way to avoid work, especially boring work that had no specific deadline (paperwork, going through faxes, yuck). For the last three weeks I haven’t opened a web browser at work except to look up labs on the hospital website. I’ve been much more focused, and much more disciplined. Interestingly, my motivation to post has nearly vanished. I expect that I’ll be posting much less frequently. Two weeks ago I briefly considered resigning from the Coffeehouse entirely, but there’s no need to do that. I’ll just post when I want, and when it is a truly pleasurable diversion, not a mechanism of avoiding something boring or something anxiety-provoking.

The Diva wanted to tell you a few things, so everything in red is from her, and she actually typed a lot of it herself.

I like the idea of my daddy spending time with me. I like to color, play, type and go on rides with my dad.

The drawing was mostly made by me. My daddy drew a tree and a tire swing, and I drew birds, a nest with birds, and a house, and some other things.

Back to Part I
Very nice drawing, although the tree and the swing could use a little work. I feel the danger of life's bulkheads being breached, until work dilutes my home time, and home's problems dilute work, and everything is just a general combination of all my life's responsibilities, all the time. Good luck fighting that.
That's a great idea, scheduling time with each kid. I've always found it a challenge to pay attention to each kid specifically. Mostly they like to do things together anyway, so it's hard to break them up.

I've been spending a lot of time with Fudge for reasons that are obvious on my blog, and certainly the PT commands much attention.

D2 gets time with me since I take her to piano lessons and play games with her.

The boys are more challenging. They're like a pack, and would rather play computer games with each other than hang out with me.

I'm glad you're not "closing shop". When people make a big production out of it, I de-blogroll them. Then surprise surprise they're back after a few days.

It's wise to keep things separate. It certainly is addicting.
Gotta feel sorry about the name of this Strategic Coach.
Gavriel: Everyone's a critic. I'd like to see your tree and swing.

You're right about boundaries being porous and, if we're not careful, making a mess of both work and family. The great thing is that Shabbat came up with a key of the Strategic Coach about 3,000 years before the Strategic Coach. The lousy thing is that, because I'm a doctor, I've allowed my profession to be an excuse for me to sneak work into Shabbat also. Strategic Coach is giving me the opportunity to realize that and to start to clean up the messes.

Psychotoddler: If the boys don't want to spend time alone with you, that's OK, but you might be surprised. Set aside a few hours on one of your free days, ask Mrs Balabusta if she can watch the other kids, and ask one son privately many days ahead of time that on such-and-such a date you've scheduled some free time and if he wants to, the two of you can do anything he wants. No pressure, if he doesn't want to, that's OK. I bet he'll jump at it.

As to closing shop, it's not my shop. I could resign, but the other Coffeehousers would still be here. As it is, I'm just dropping to part-time status.

Ralphie: I see you've been poking around the website. I never looked at the various coaches, since, obviously, I only care about the coach assigned to my group. That is an unfortunate name.

"Ve vill march and salute oonteel ve get eet right!"
"OK, coach…"
"Here eez ze strategy: first ve vill invade Poland. Zen a secret treaty viz Russia."
"I don't know, coach..."
I've been wondering where you were. Sounds like you're headed in a good direction. Good luck!
Ayelet: Thanks!
This explains quite a lot.
Jack: I don't understand what you mean.
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