So far, 2020 has been a wild ride. A ride I’m hoping will end soon.

I had big plans for 2020, as I’m sure a lot of people did. Then a pandemic was thrust upon us and my confidence in the future took a huge hit.

Events I had hoped to attend this year have been canceled. Jobs that would have brought in income have evaporated. On top of all that, someone stole my identity and an individual has been sending me messages to my author email account professing his undying love and calling me his ‘beloved wife.’

I’ve never met the man. And it’s obvious he’s never met me, otherwise I’m sure he would never use the word ‘beloved.’

Despite all this, I decided I was going to use Arizona’s stay-at-home orders to my advantage and finish some big projects. By the end of April, I had published my fourth novel, compiled my first three novels into a special-edition box set, made major changes to my website, and built the Millennium Falcon out of LEGOs.

That last one wasn’t on any to-do list, but I’m still counting it as a major accomplishment.

Unfortunately, May was not as productive as April. I lost my momentum. I lost my focus. Anxiety, and a tad bit of depression, had set in.

I haven’t been able to check off one single item on my May/June to-do list. The list that seemed attainable in April now feels like fantasy—a wish that has little hope of coming true.

(Hmmm…sounds like a pity party to me.)

Upon further reflection of May, it wasn’t all that bad. I may not have crossed anything off my list, but it wasn’t a complete waste of time.

I had Zoom meetings with a couple of friends, trying to flesh out an idea for a podcast. And I worked with some wonderful people on a three-day, on-site project. Most importantly, I spent a lot of quality time with my son. These things weren’t on my list, but they all meant a great deal to me.

It also makes me realize that instead of trying to work on my fifth novel, which requires a lot of solitary time, what I need right now is to be working with other people. It may be through Zoom or WebEx, but it helps to be communicating and collaborating with others while we wait for things to return to normal (or whatever the “new” normal may be).

So, the first week of June will be spent connecting with friends and colleagues, discovering how we can help each other in this odd and difficult time.

And then, I plan to put my project management skills to use. I mean, I am a certified project manager, after all. I should be able to come up with a reasonable plan to get most of the items on my to-do list done by the end of June.

Which raises the question: Why is it so much easier to do these things for other people? What makes their projects so much more important than mine?

For one thing, managing projects for others pays better.

Or rather, they pay. Period.

But while my projects may not add funds to my bank account (at least not right away), they do add to my self-confidence and my self-worth.

And right now, those things are priceless.