Sunday, January 9, 2011


Today's focus in "Secrets of Simplicity: Learn to Live Better with Less" by Mary Carlomagno, focuses on the excuses we make for why we hold onto things or habits...  Interesting.  She says that, "most, if not all excuses revolved around four major areas: time, motivation, emotion, and energy."  If you can, "get control of one of these areas... you hold the keys to your escape plan.  In simple terms, clutter and unhelpful habits can be eliminated when:
**Time is devoted.
**A commitment is made.
**Emotion is released.
**Everyday action is taken."

I totally relate to this!  Last week, I was really getting down on myself.  It had been a quiet week work-wise and socially, but I was feeling exhausted everyday from the moment I woke up until the moment I tried to go to sleep... and then couldn't sleep because my mind wouldn't stop racing!  Then, finally one morning as I was going downstairs for breakfast, I noticed all the stuff laying around the house - dirty dishes, dog toys, a messy kitchen counter and dishes in the sink, muddy shoes that made muddy floors...  I just felt like crawling back into bed and avoiding the day.  But I managed to get out the door for work - and felt exhausted.

Then I came home in the afternoon...  to more dirty dishes.  Another pair of dirty shoes on my dirtier floor.  Coats on the banister.  Christmas presents that still hadn't been put away because we hadn't found a home for them yet.  A stain on the floor that hadn't been cleaned up...  I wanted to go straight to bed.  Too tired to deal with so much.

So Friday, I spent the day cleaning and organizing.  And when the hubby came home, I simply said, "Can you do me a huge favor?  I really need your help in maintaining my sanity...  Can we work together on this?  Can you help me keep this house clean?  Put things away when we're done with them?  Rinse dishes and put them in the dishwasher?  Take off your shoes in the garage?  Can we do this together?  For the sake of my sanity and energy levels?"

He laughed at me.  Then he smiled and said, "sure."  And it's making all the difference!  We did some major cleaning this weekend - taking down Christmas stuff, cleaning and organizing all the cabinets and drawers in the kitchen, and we're in the midst of installing a closet organizing system in our under-the-stairs closet (for camping, hiking, and backpacking gear).  I'm already feeling a HUGE wieght lifted from my shoulders getting these tasks done!

And it all started with recognizing that my fatigue and lack of motivation were symptoms of being overwhelmed by clutter and mess. 

(Time = feeling like I had to do it all by myself.  Motivation = none after a busy day and little sleep.  Emotion = resentment creeping in and a sense of being overwhelmed.  Energy = I had none!)

Most of the time my excuses fall into the catagory of "I'm too tired" or "I have other things to do first."  But geesh.  I feel so much better if I just tackle the project and get it done!

And now... since I'm not watching TV in the mornings any more... there's more time in my day to get annoying projects out of the way, right?  No more excuses!

Things I am thankful for today:

1.  Hugs.
2.  Tommy asking for another skiing day.  Love him.
3.  Getting a nice check for expenses.  Woo-hoo!
4.  Hearing people's stories of giving - so fun!
5.  A 2 hour nap.  Much needed!
6.  Helping the hubby install the shelving system in our closet - we work well together!
7.  Our dog...  Always wanting to be a part of whatever we are doing!
(This closest is barely big enough for Mike and I to maneuver - must you be in the middle of everything?

(Let's play a little game of "Where's Bailey?")

(There she is!  She was quite content to make a nest in Daddy's sleeping bags...)

8.  Our new pizza stone - our homemade pizza has gone to another level!
9.  Finishing the book, "29 Gifts" - love the idea behind it!
10.  A fire in the fireplace ot curl up next to.
11.  The hubby's heart-felt "thank yous" for helping him out when he didn't feel good today.  So sweet.

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