Friday, June 27, 2008

Midday Organization Vacation Review

I'm in the process of my organization vacation day, but I thought I'd take a break to record what has occurred as this was provided as one of my goals and also a reward for good progress.

The day got off to a bit of a slow stop. Trajan stayed home from school yesterday due to an eczema (at least that's the "likely" diagnosis) outbreak that we wanted to get under control. It looked like it was really headed the right way last night, but I wanted to take the time this morning to really check it out, give him a treatment bath, etc. And then I for some reason was compelled to go to Original Pancake House and have a Dutch Baby and read the newspaper. As I've responded well to advance-rewards since at least early elementary, I indulged this fancy. Then, there was a friend actually at the house when I got here, so it took me till after 9:30 to even be in a position to start.

While I was in a position to start, I just didn't want to. And instead of getting frustrated, angry or just going along with the momentum and quitting, I popped open a document and made some notes. They were as follows:

· Start by 10
· Change into sports bra/shorts combo
· Start with the bar including getting audio book playing as first step
· Organize full bags and take to their location, replacing with a new one
To accomplish:
· Get midspaces so it can be photoed, if extra time, dining room first, then kitchen, then living room, then bath, then stairs.
· Also, clean up the mess of the cleaning caddy
· Ensure path for new machines
· Clean out car
· Keep atonement audio book playing
· But include some of the organization audios at natural breaks
· Consider getting getting things done and adding that to phone
· 5-8 minute wii fit breaks allowed following an identifiable completed task/area – basically,
just needs to be something I can put specific words to

This worked to get me going. It gave me a clear structure to operate within including a time frame, gave me some ideas of specific things to do so I wasn't just puttering around and reminded me of things that would make it more pleasurable and things I could offer myself as a reward for good progress.

I did start right at 10:00, despite some iTunes difficulties that had the potential to delay me, but while I had gotten myself to the point of moving, my heart just wasn't in it. But in another startling brilliant and self-aware move, I recognized this status and dealt with it by setting an 18 minute timer and promising myself a reward break at the end of it.

During these 18 minutes, I cleaned off the new clutter that had developed in the midspaces area, prepped a couple of letters that needed to be sent and generally got all my organizing systems and tools in order. I should confess that I did look at the timer once; the time left was 2:56. After the alarm went off, I promptly took a break and went upstairs and put a different pair of socks on while planning first my immediate course of action and then what I would do for my break (check my email and google reader).

My plan was to deal with the organization within the refrigerator and then assuming that went well, the freezer and the pantry. While this deviated from the "to accomplish" list I'd made before, it definitely was within my larger goals and as it was something that sounded interesting to me, it was the right decision. Well, I flew into this project and completely organized, cleaned and refilled all three of these locations including even cleaning out the ice machine tray thing! I definitely need to make this at least a quarterly task and I really think I should do it to a minor degree weekly (just removing visibly bad things, not checking dates). Three contractor bags later, all of which I had trouble lifting and one that actually left me with some muscle soreness, and I feel quite accomplished.

Now it's 12:30 and I need to really dig into it for the second half of the day. My plan now is to empty the sink completely first. Then, I'm going to deal with the surfaces of the kitchen. However, I must promise myself that I will not attempt to deal with any of the cabinets or cleaning any of the appliances in anyway at this time. I'm not trying to underscore their importance. It's just not what is in the works for the day.

Following that, I'm going to head out into the garage and first deal with the mess that occurred from a fluke drop of a yogurt smoothie drink into the cleaning supplies area. After that, I'm off to organize and empty my car. Then, I'll take it over to the car wash and get it cleaned before we head out for the weekend. If time remains after that, I can choose between one of two options. First, I can clean the surfaces that I cleared last weekend both because some stuff has accumulated over the week and since their initial status was so bad that it really justifies an additional clean. Alternatively, I can begin the clutter sorting work within the living room.

My alternate activity that I propose for myself at any time if I find myself just not tolerating continuing what I'm doing is to go to the vacuum store and get more bags. Also, it would be nice if I would drop off dry cleaning on the way to get Trajan.

Summary: sink, kitchen surfaces, cleaning supplies area, car. Other possibilities: midspace cleaning, living room clutter. Errands: carwash, vacuum bags, dry cleaning.

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