Very interesting comments over the past few days – thanks for all your support and encouragement. I think that a lot of people get overwhelmed with things they think they ‘should’ do and also with clutter in their lives. It does feel like a constant struggle and I think that it’s OK to admit that it is! As long as I buy things, I will have to be vigilant about clutter. As long as I live in this house (and are maid-free) I will struggle with mess. 

One of my problems is that I grew up in a very clean and ordered house and I always wanted the same for my own home…but it’s not like my mother didn’t work at it! If we left a mess, she cleaned it up. She made it look effortless but I know it wasn’t – it came at great personal cost to her. Almost every night was spent working – preparing and cooking dinner, making lunches, cleaning up, washing up – she did everything. And worked. And the entire time I was growing up I thought “that’s not what I want my life to be about.” I never wanted to have no time to myself and I never wanted to exist just to serve other people.

I think that’s the reason I have resisted doing things I don’t want to my whole life. I know I have to do certain things – basic things that people do every day without thinking about it – but I fight them. I always have. And I really want to get over that now.

I know too that I am hard on myself and something Jadey wrote made me really think about this. I have known I am too hard on myself – but I never considered the impact it had on me. When I read “Honey you obviously have no idea about the powerful lady that lives within you. Honestly. I have met her and she is just dying to come out” I stopped and thought. I know I am a strong person – but could my guilt and remorse (fueled by not being “good enough”) be so damaging to me that my true strength and potential cannot be released? If I stopped the guilt and the judging and looked realistically at what I expect from myself – would I be able to achieve what I actually want to in life? I have always assumed that if you don’t push yourself you get nowhere. But where have I got by pushing myself? Not far! With the debt we were in – I spent literally YEARS pushing hard to get it paid off and it never worked. We couldn’t live on the money I thought we should be able to, and the credit card debt just kept going up and up and up. When we finally snapped and decided we would take a year to pay it off it worked. We have now paid off $19,005 and are very close to saying goodbye to credit card debt forever. What if I took that approach to everything I wanted to get done?

When Nola wrote “Just keep breaking it all down into small chunks…that’s all you can do.” I was determined to do that. I am taking the house cleaning one room at a time (for those not in too terrible a state.) For something as bomb site-like as my office – it’s one surface at a time. It’s too easy to become overwhelmed.

Another thing I don’t do is take time for myself to do things I enjoy. I too often dismiss things I really love because they take up too much time – and I should be doing something else! I should be cleaning! Or throwing things out! But on the weekend I went to my Uncle’s house and he has a great garden…lots of lovely plants and a veggie patch. You can tell he has spent a lot of time and energy on it (like my Pa did) and he has got so much out of it. Well – that’s what I want! I love plants and gardening, and I rarely spend time in the garden. Today – that’s pretty much all I did. And I feel calm and happy.

So the plan for the rest of the holidays is do what I want for 90% of the time. I need to give myself a break.

 know wh I am not normally this down in the dumps but things have just got on top of me this year.

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