Want Success? Think Small!
Want Success? Think Small!
Success is usually linked with "thinking big", but today I want to challenge that and encourage you to "think small"!
I had an enlightening moment and I just had to share it with you!!!!!
I am not a good house keeper. Let me explain.
There is always a pile of papers on my island. Well, by always, I mean 99% of the time, until we have company when they are whisked away to a hidden location. Lol. I don't dust regularly. The windows get washed only when the finger prints become very obvious. ? There are often dishes in the sink and yes, they are dirty. I hate cleaning the bathroom. The end.
**Now, so that this doesn't reflect on my mom or my upbringing, let me just say, it's not her fault. She taught me well, I just like to do other things more, so I've been putting those things at a higher priority than cleaning the house.**
What my mom did pass onto me though, was that during my growing up years, when we had company, she'd do this frantic deep clean of the house and the stress level of everyone would skyrocket. When someone came to visit unexpectedly, it was especially stress producing. Mommy was definitely a perfectionist.
I began to see the same anxiety in myself when friends dropped by unexpectedly. I remember one time friends dropped by on their way home and I was so embarrassed about my house that we stood in our entryway and visited. ? I should probably apologize for that.
After that, I decided I needed to let go of that anxiety and let go of the need for a perfect house when friends came over. If friendship was important to me, and it was and is, I needed to either maintain my home in such a way that didn't lead to anxiety when someone dropped by or just not worry about the mess! I definitely wanted friends to feel comfortable to drop by!
So, I decided I needed to work on maintaining our home better!
What would happen is that I'd decide "I'm going to keep my house super neat and clean" and I'd do it for about...2 days. ? Well, maybe longer than 2 days but not by much and that was before kids!! ?
Then I tried setting a schedule for cleaning. Monday - Clean the Bathroom, Tuesday - Girl's room and entry way, Wednesday - Vacuum and Island, Thursday - Clean the master bedroom and Kitchen, Friday - Bathroom and general clean up. What would happen with this plan was I'd get off a day or two when something would come up and then I'd get flustered and try to figure out how to fit it back in. The struggle was all in my head I'm sure, but the schedule just didn't work.
So, keeping my house neat and clean has been this perpetual frustration, embarrassment and stressor.
Now enter my ah-ha moment!!!
I finally decided to only focus on two things: the kitchen/island and a quick "pick-up" of the house after dinner each night! I informed Daddy O of my new intention and he's been wonderful about helping me achieve this!
The two main areas of my kitchen are the island and the sink area. So, now I make sure there are no dirty dishes and the counters are clean. The biggest issue with the island was mail. If you farm, you know there is TONS of mail that comes in everyday!
So I finally came up with this strategy for the mail...
I have a "Read It" pocket for all those wonderful ag publications we get! The middle pocket is the "File It" pocket for the loads of farm mail we get. The bottom pocket says "Pay It" and is for all the monthly bills. When the pockets get full, I take them into our office and file it all. I do that about once a month. I love this system, so had to share it with you! These pockets are from Thirty-one. I get them from a sweet momma in town! You can check out her link here!
Ok, Back on track. ☺️
I will admit that focusing on just those 2 things is not a 100% fix. The island and kitchen doesn't always stay picked up and clean. Sometimes the quick pick up after dinner doesn't occur, but remember I'm trying to avoid the peril of perfectionism.
Essentially what I did was take a huge goal, which was having my house always neat and clean, and break it down into small more manageable goals! Then I focused on those instead of the big daunting goal I had failed at so many times!!
Turns out I was onto something!! Do you get Darren Daily texts? These daily texts are from Darren Hardy who is an author, speaker and the publisher of SUCCESS magazine. They are filled with wonderful advice! Just the other day he shared this. He said by focusing on the big looming goal, people fall into "productive paralysis", loose focus and become even more susceptible to distraction. That's exactly what has happened to me in the past!!
If you are focusing so small, how will this help you meet the larger, long term goal?
Having a neat and clean home continues to be my long term goal. I plan to continue to add small goals on as the previous ones become second nature. For example, the next small goal I will be adding on to my kitchen/island and quick after dinner pick up is, completing 1 load of laundry from hamper to put away everyday!
So, just keep taking that next step and before you know it, that big goal will be met!
Have you succumbed to "productive paralysis" and been susceptible to distraction"? Do you know how to break down one of your large intimidating goals into manageable smaller steps?
If you want some help, comment with your goal in the comments below! I'd love to help you out!!