Monday, October 23, 2006

Retraining myself

So when I was younger and living at home, I did a lot of house work. Felt like I did all the housework, but I know that can't possibly be right. It's just my child-size memory. So when I lived away from home, I did as little as possible. Lived in cafeteria dorms, cleaned only when necessary--and often had roommates who would clean before I got there. When I got married, we were so busy with school and jobs and then children and school and jobs that the household tasks got put off for later. And then that became a habit.

Now I am basically a SAHM. My website is slow to nothing, so I don't have to worry about inventory or shipping very often. I teach classes at Stampin Cat once or twice a month, so while I do have to work creating and prepping the class, it's not nearly the workload graduate school while working while dealing with an infant is. Yet I still put everything off, and then try to do as much as I can in a mad rush before DH gets home.

I've been getting the Fly Lady emails for years now, and usually I just delete most of them 'cause I'm not really following her "zones" or "missions", just trying to come up with a daily routine I can stick to. One thing I have had success with is her use of a timer, with the mantra, "I can do anything for 15 minutes!" She feels like we can make ourselves do even the most distasteful tasks for 15 minutes and then we are at least that much more ahead. My average time unloading the dishwasher: 6 minutes. Loading it? Another 6 or so. Yet I can leave the sink full of dishes ALL DAY LONG!

So for now into the holidays, I am retraining myself. I've gotten pretty good at emptying the sink and running the dishwasher before I go to bed at night, and doing a couple of loads of laundry each day--leaving the washing machine empty and ready for a new load in the morning. And our bathrooms are being cleaned weekly. The kitchen floor is swept and swiffered regularly as well. And I do like my purple FlyLady feather duster and I use it weekly as well. The thing is, I'm still putting these chores off until the last minute. With the exception of the laundry, I usually do these things late at night right before I go to bed, and I fret all day about needing to get them done. My goal: do them first. Do the dishes right after we are done eating, if I can. Sweep and Dust and Vacuum in the mornings. Give myself play time w/o the guilt. Retraining those habits of putting it off until later.

Another thing I like about Flylady? Her belief that "you are never behind." You just keep going. Start right where you are, and don't beat yourself up over what you messed up on. So even if I am not successful at this right away, it doesn't matter if I keep trying and making the effort. At least things will be neater around here--improving my peace of mind.

And that's the other side.

1 comment:

Cami said...

I'm the same way...procrastinator big time! but with my daughter in school this year, at the end of Sept. I took on some day care kids. I have a 9 month old infant full time and a 5 yr old half time. I'm finding I have more time to get stuff done tho because I can't just lock myself in my scrap room. I have to watching them but I can pick up and clean and load that dishwasher! lol
Good luck with your goals :P)
My motto is always, "I do what I can...if it's not good enough go get a better wife/mom...I dare ya!"