alpharaposa: (tiger)
We have the Flylady calendar. It's huge. It's about the size of a regular wall calendar, but instead of having some cute or inspirational picture, the top and bottom is used for dates.

This means I can note down lots of things on it. Currently I have bills noted down on the day they're due (along with the amount due). Trash day is noted. Birthdays. Things important for feminine tracking. And now, I'm marking down when I exercise.

This way, when I make a goal, I'll be able to see how well I'm sticking to it.
alpharaposa: (Default)
There are parts of FlyLady's program that are very tough. There are a few very strict rules. One such rule: No Whining!

It's a pretty hard rule. It sounds so mean. I'm depressed; it's hard for me to do things. Other people are crippled or diabetic or arthritic. They deal with pain and tiredness and all sorts of other problems that go with their illnesses.

And what is the response? That it doesn't matter. You are not your disease. All those things add up to a giant list of I Can'ts, and those I Can'ts keep us from doing anything. Not even the simplest thing. Not even 15 minutes of picking up pieces of paper and throwing them away. Not even 10 minutes. Not even 5. We never get started, because we know we won't be able to do it all.

Also, focusing on the disease means we miss all the good and wonderful things in our lives. Even if we are lame, God gave us wings. And when we are so battered and tired that we can't use those, God carries us. He'll even help along those who are traveling with us. And if all you can see is the broken wings, you miss the fact that you're still flying.

Every other email from the FlyLady has this message: I'm So Proud of You! Even if all you do is 5 minutes of cleaning, you cleaned! It doesn't have to be perfect. It doesn't even have to be a lot. You got up and put away all the I Can'ts and did something to bless yourself and your family. That's important.

God loved us when we were yet sinners. He loves us now even though we're not perfect. Why can't we try to be more like Him?
alpharaposa: (god)
I'm to level 4 with my Chore Wars character, now. Yesterday, just before [livejournal.com profile] anher was on his way home, I was filling in some minor task I'd finished and looked at the list of things I'd finished that day.

I was amazed. I did all that? Granted, most of them were small chores worth 5 xp or so, but there were a couple of big ones in there, too. And it wasn't a short list.

One of the things in the FlyLady beginner's babysteps is to recognize negative thoughts and to change them. Negative thoughts that are fairly common include things like "I don't do enough around here" or "I'll never get it all done." Last week, after doing some minor cleaning in the bathroom, I was surprised at how much cleaner and nicer that little bit of scrubbing had made the room. The "I'll never get it all done" became a much better "Look at all that progress."

This week, with the help of the Chore Wars showing just how much I do every day, the "I don't do enough around here" is replaced with "Gee, I do a lot more than I thought I did." I do things. I can see the progress around me, and I can see a list of accomplishments for the day on the Chore Wars website.

This month is paper clutter month according to FlyLady. It's a monster. I think I'll invest in a +5 paper shredder and see what I can do to tear it down to size.
alpharaposa: (otaku)
Earning XP through daily household tasks

So, anybody want to set up an adventuring party to see how far we can get? It occurred to me that we don't have to live in the same house to compare progress and cheer each other on.

This is quite possibly the geekiest method I can think of to get people to do chores... but hey, whatever works, right?

EDIT: I went ahead and created an account. It's free. Now, I can either join a party, or I can create one for others to join.
alpharaposa: (Default)
I was happy with the progress in the bathroom last week. This week, the zone is the master bedroom. *shudder*

Our bedroom isn't too full to get around or anything like that, but it's still not a nice, happy place for lounging around before bedtime, either. It's messy. And it's hard to know what to do or where to start.

Still, nothing ventured... at least I can make progress. If I don't do anything at all, no progress will be made. If I do something, then that's a positive.

So, I took a trash bag in there and picked up trash. I cleared off some of my night stand and some of the dresser. It's an improvement. It's not the full mission given, but it's better than it was.

The biggest thing to discourage me is the cat smell. Our bedroom was Percy's favorite place to go spray when he was stressed out, and, even though I've cleaned up some of it, there's still some lingering patches. Cleaning up the trash and the clothes here and there means disturbing pockets of old cat smell. Ew.

Next task will be to gather up all the clothes on the floor and wash them. That'll probably help a lot, right there.
alpharaposa: (Default)
Today's mission from FlyLady was to shine the bathroom sink. Unfortunately, mine is still covered with things.

So, in the interest of finding more space, I went to Wal-Mart and picked up a shower caddy and a new shower curtain. I looked a long time at some of the simple shelving they have in there, but didn't find anything I was willing to buy.

I came home, put up the shower caddy, and it just holds everything that was sitting on the edge of the bathtub. Instead of sighing over not finding a place for the stuff on the sink, I took the opportunity to scrub the now clear parts of the bathtub. Afterwards, I replaced the shower liner and took down the cloth curtain to get washed. It's in the washer right now.

I'm overheated from working in that tight space with hot water, but the tub looks a lot cleaner than it did. I didn't get to the mission for today, but I accomplished something!

And maybe I'll manage some decluttering in the bathroom today so that the next time I need to wash down the sink, I'll be able to do it. 10 or 15 minutes of sorting towels and toiletries would probably help.
alpharaposa: (Default)
Since I'm cleaning bits of the house with FlyLady, I decided to take a look at my inbox. I've deleted or moved over 90 old emails, and still have around 300 sitting there.

Whew.

One of today's missions was to clean the bathroom trash can. After you empty it, you fill it with hot water and some cleaner you have sitting around to soak. While it was soaking, I decided to use the hot cleaner water inside to scrub some of the scum off my bathtub.

Even if you just do the little missions, each one gives you opportunities to notice and tidy up something nearby. So long as you don't wear yourself out, it can be very gratifying to do a little extra.
alpharaposa: (Default)
I signed up on the flylady mailing list. Emails, ahoy!

I am also trying to apply a little of what she says about cleaning to the panic I feel about going job hunting.

There are a couple of problems that she addresses. The first, of course, is that of having no idea where or how to start- you just get overwhelmed by the immensity of the task. The FlyLady constantly exhorts, "Baby steps, baby steps." Do one thing to get started. Then do the next.

The second problem is that once we start, we want it all to be done as soon as possible. We'll plunge in and work as hard as we can, and then burn out and give up and let things slide until they're worse than before. I recognize that feeling. I want to be able to just rush out, fill out an application or go through an interview, and have the job. I want it over with.

It's an odd kind of patience to develop. No rushing. Just one step at a time. Not too many steps at once, either. Pace yourself, but make sure to do a little something each day.

With that in mind, once I got over my first feeling of being overwhelmed, I sat down and thought about what I need to do to find a job. This is my list of things I need to have ready while hunting:

1. An updated resume.
2. A list of references. Three to five names, with addresses and phone numbers.
3. A list of where I've lived for the last five years. (Much easier than in the past! I've lived here and also across the street over the last five years.)
4. A pen for filling out forms.

So, tomorrow, I will sit down with a book we have that has step-by-step instructions to writing a good resume. That's my baby step for tomorrow. In the meantime, if anybody who knows me personally wants to volunteer to be a reference, I'd appreciate the help. ;)

Also, if I forgot anything on the list, please let me know.
alpharaposa: (god)
That my house is cleaner than it was. No matter how much progress has been made, I still look around and only see what's dirty and in the way. For all that's been done, there is still a lot of work left to do. It's easy to feel as if nothing has actually been accomplished.

FlyLady frequently warns against being a perfectionist. Imperfect cleaning is still cleaning, she says. Baby steps. It didn't get dirty in a day; it's not going to get clean in a day. If you try to get it all clean in a day, you'll just wear out and break, and then nothing will get done at all because you're broken.

Oddly enough, this post reminds me of [livejournal.com profile] prester_scott. What's true for the physical is true for the spiritual.
alpharaposa: (tiger)
I'm finally shining my sink today. First, I had to get the garbage disposal fixed. Then, today, I went out and bought a stopper for that side of the sink so I could fill it with water. Wal-Mart only had one left. I'm glad it was there.

Shiny Sink 101, the directions I'm following. Right now, I'm waiting through the hour-long soak of the second sink basin. After that soak, the first basin has a whiteness that astonishes. I can't imagine what it'll be like after I scrub 'em.

Since I couldn't shine my sink first, I did the day two thing first- getting in the habit of getting dressed to my shoes as soon as I get up for the day. I've been doing that for several days now. I already knew the difference shoes makes in your attitude. Thoroughly brushing my hair in the morning has been very nice, though. I've often skipped that because I have so much hair and it doesn't snarl much, but it feels good to brush it and it looks nice afterwards.

(I have straight-as-a-board hair. It's not even a little bit wavy like my dad's hair.)

EDIT: Sink shiny. The faucet fixture looks like new. The sink itself is a little banged up, but is very white now.

Hmmm

Aug. 26th, 2007 11:42 pm
alpharaposa: (Default)
I've read a lot of the book, and looked over the website. I think I'll try joining the FlyLady group and following the emails.

After we get back from Cancun.

After all, it's pointless to start a bunch of new habits, only to interrupt the whole thing for a week. Until then, I'll do some little things. Get up and get dressed first thing in the morning. Get my sink repaired so I can shine it. (The garbage disposal ist kaput.) Do a little decluttering where I can.

Then, when we get back, I'll sign onto the mailing list.

Friday we leave home. Things that need to get done before then: pay windows, get garbage disposal fixed/replaced, pack, find out who's taking care of the kitties. Packing includes finding out the current regulations on what you can take on a plane, making sure the right clothes are clean, and making sure the luggage is clean.
alpharaposa: (Default)
[livejournal.com profile] anher and I agreed to do some cleaning in the computer room today. We exhumed a corner and a whole shelf on one of the bookcases back there.

Then, we sat down and went through some mail sitting in the front room. It was terribly old mail. Most of it was just thrown away. That got me to go out and get today's mail.

Which is why today is when I finally opened up the FlyLady book my mom bought me.

I read the chapters she marked first, then went back and read the first three. Tomorrow, I'll get up and get dressed, then start in on some baby steps.

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