My hectic schedule is winding down and into a much calmer summer.

Except that I’ve got so much on my list of summer resolutions this year, I don’t know where to begin!

These past few days I’ve been remembering the simple, amazing, reassuring words of Forrest Church, pastor of All Souls Unitarian Church here in New York City until his death last September:

Do what you can.

Want what you have.

Be who you are.

There’s something so basic and affirming in these three little sentences. I especially love that feeling of permission, that it’s OK to just go ahead and do my best and be who I am.

Lately I’ve been combining Dr. Church’s first line, Do what you can, with Therese Borchard’s advice about sleep.

To paraphrase Therese: Good sleep hygiene involves going to bed for eight hours every night, at the same time, on the same pillow, in the same bed.

Besides the good rest which makes me feel better, I like having this solid rule to define my day, to limit what I try to accomplish. Otherwise I’m one of those people who starts ten million tasks and runs around in circles frantically and doesn’t know when to STOP for the day.

These days, at 11PM, I stop. I then take an hour for quiet reading and winding-down time (no electronics!), and at midnight it’s lights out.

No more trying to get one more little task accomplished, one more e-mail out.

I do what I can.

And then I sleep.

And then I get up in the morning and do what I can for another day.

Tiffany Window at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC