It’s the twenty-third day of Lent today. I’m not Catholic, but you have to vow to give something up, right? But what? Chocolate and sex are the usual suspects, but there’s no hope of me giving up one and I’m not getting any of the other so they’re both pointless. Then I got an email from Flylady that suggested giving up procrastination for Lent. Every day, pick something from your big to-do list and just get on with it.
What a good idea! Something that’s very relevant to me and ties in with my wish to get organised. So I did. And I’ve been doing pretty well on it – I kind of lost track in the middle of last week for a couple of days when I honestly cannot remember what I did, but the rest of the time I’ve managed to do something every day. It’s good to look back at my diary and see that I’ve made progress. So far I’ve done things like:
- reorganised pantry (and thrown out an awful lot of expired food)
- rearranged Bianca’s room and culled the outgrown clothes
- cleaned the leather couch in the TV room (WELL overdue)
- made Bianca’s 2-year checkup appointment
- worked on catching up with accounts
- started tax prep for the year before last.
- began mending zip on skirt (ooh, better work out how to use sewing machine to finish that one)
- decluttered spare room a bit
Not everything is earth shattering and it’s hard to see why I’ve been putting most of them off. The 2-year-old appointment, for example, that wasn’t hard! But, I needed to find the phone number to call and then arrange an appointment but the Maternal and Child Health Nurse is always busy so you have to ring well in advance and I’m only available on Wednesdays and Fridays so I anticipated it being a difficult conversation (and I kept forgetting to write the number down). But in the end I just phoned in and ended up getting an appointment right on Bianca’s birthday. Perfect.
I suppose that’s the crux of my procrastination problem – they’re all lots of little tasks that either have multiple steps which makes them seem more complicated, or they’re nice to haves which are never quite important enough to get on the radar. Yesterday, for example, all I did was find the Pokoyo DVD we’ve had out from Quickflix for about four months and stick it in an envelope to post back. See? A tiny thing, barely worth mentioning, but it’s been hanging over me for ages. And maybe they’ll reward me with another Medium DVD.
Slowly I’m making progress on things. And one day I’ll get that damn tax information done!
I was sick a couple of weeks ago with bronchitis which meant I got a whole week off work. I spent a lot of time sleeping and then more time lolling on the (filthy) couch watching TiVoed episodes of Hoarders. I don’t know why I love that show so much, but it really makes me feel better about myself, knowing that only a couple of rooms in my house look that bad, and it inspires me to get up and chuck stuff out. I am not good at decluttering. I want to be; I want a nice clear simple home where everything has its place, but too often I’ve thrown stuff out only to regret it so I want to keep things just in case. And it’s hardly frugal, is it? I mean, what if I throw out those 50 oddly small envelopes and then one day I want to post invites to Bianca’s birthday party? Or I look at our bookshelves and think yeah, there are a lot of books in there I’ll probably never want to read again but they’re all contained in that one area, so what does it matter?
Ten minutes into Hoarders and I’m all, right if it’s not nailed down put it in the bin!
I’m enjoying myself, though it feels like I’m not making enough progress. So then I do weird things, like I removed all the songs off my ipod and am slowly adding them back on album by album. There’s a lot of crap in my iTunes library that I really don’t care for, so why keep it? I did the same with my email. The entire contents of my Sent folder – gone! Same with all the emails to do with my dad’s estate. It’s settled now, why keep them to remind me of a bad time?
And, if you’re really observant (and care) you might notice I did the same with all the old entries here. This blog’s been stumbling along for nearly three years now. I wanted a fresh start without moving, so I changed themes to something nice and pared back and removed the old posts. Turns out they weren’t all as awful as I thought they were so I’ll probably add them back in again at some point but for now it feels all nice and fresh and clean.
Maybe one of my upcoming anti-procrastination tasks will be to finish that damn banner I started ages ago too. Yeah, straight after I catch up with all our tax.