Finding Some Tools

slumber party

Image by theogeo via Flickr

Tonight I will have a houseful of girls ranging in ages from 6.8-10 years of age.  There will be 7 of them.  They will be here for almost 12 hours. I planned this little side trip in my journey. I made lists –

  • of guests,
  • of crafts,
  • of supplies,
  • of things I need to get done around the house.

I made timelines –

Getting Things Done: The Inbox
  • for the party,
  • for the house cleaning,
  • for my work week  so that I could turn off the computer on time at the end of the day,
  • for craft prep,
  • for baking cupcakes.

I am now down to 5 hours before the party starts and everything has fallen apart.

  • The cupcakes did not rise when baking.
  • The clutter in the playroom is not put away.
  • The clutter in the living room is still piled around.
  • The clutter in the kitchen and the kitchen table has multiplied.
  • I still need to go to the grocery store.
  • I forgot my wonderful husband is in an all day meeting today and is not around for me to rely on for those last-minute details.

This, unfortunately is not an unusual situation for me.  I start out with terrific intentions, but then somewhere along the line I end up on some unforeseen detour that never seems to get me back on the right road.  It is extremely frustrating.  What makes it worse is that my husband and I do not seem to have the same  destination in mind as we start out on our little jaunts.  We talk about the goals.  We agree about what needs to be done. But somewhere along the line his idea of getting things done and my idea diverge, neve r to be connected again.    After over 20 years of marriage (I got married when I was 8 – that’s my story and I am sticking to it!) one would think that I would no longer be irritated by this.  Whoever one is, one would be very wrong! Today, procrastinating and reading Unclutterer, I think I finally realized part of the problem.   In the 3 part series by  guest author Alex Fayle,  he addresses 3 “monsters” of that prevent people from getting things accomplished.   They are entitled Getting Started Monster,  No Momentum Monster, and Flattening the Never Finishing Monster.  I read the articles avidly, trying to figure out why I seem perpetually cursed to never get something done on time.    There were some things in each article that really sparked for me.  Things like,  just making the lists does not count  – I actually have to follow through on the lists.  But the entire Flattening the Never Finishing Monster is really what illuminated my path.  You see, the reason that my husband and I never get anywhere when we attempt to do decluttering projects together is because he is ok with the Never Finished Monster, and I am not.  I want to do it right from start to FINISH.  He is ok saying that it will get finished sometime and leave some things sitting around or stashed in a drawer where those items undergo some bizarre form of clutter mitosis and soon there is an overgrowth of clutter again.OK – now I have the source of the trouble.  But the problem is how do we co-declutter?  He helps me get past the Starting Monster and pushes me through the lair of the No Momentum Monster.   But I don’t know how to help him fight the Never Finishing Monster.  Man, a professional organizer would make this so much easier!  But I know that my girls need to see me overcome these challenges.  They need to see me face personal issues.  They need to see hubby and I work together to get things done.   So, for now, I am off to slay the Never Finishing Monster on my own with my trusty laundry basket (for things that need to find their true homes), trash bag (for those items that need to go to that big clutter pile in the sky), and my dust cloth which I hope will help with all those pesky dust allergies!  I will report in on Monday and let you all know if I was able to slay this particular monster!


3 responses to “Finding Some Tools

  1. LOL! First off – dump the parties. Have 2 or at most 3 friends have a sleepover or go to a movie or bowling. No party. Have junk food for them to eat. Have a cake of the girls choice. Let her pick what is for dinner. Roll with that.

    As fun as the crafts and stuff are — most kids now just want to decompress. The smaller the group the better.

    Give it a try and see if all of you don’t have a much better time.

    As far as hubs… clue. Most men are hunters — hunt it and kill it — apparently he missed the kill it gene. LOL!

  2. Sounds like Autumn has done this before! LOL
    I hope things went well at the party – man, oh man are you a brave, brave lady.

  3. I love Unclutterer. Great site. Can’t think of a better place to find inspiration and advice in this process.

    As for the finishing, maybe take a clue from Fly Lady – set a timer for 15 minutes and do some decluttering. Don’t take on a huge project, just one pile or drawer. There is something inspiring about knowing you get to stop at 15 minutes that makes me quite productive. If that little project doesn’t quite get finished this time, make that the top priority for the next time you declutter. As long as you keep doing 15 minutes, those little bits that didn’t get finished will eventually get addressed. You’ll still be making forward progress.

    Best of luck to you in this process. I’ve been making some great progress against the same battle in our house but I’ve gotten stumped by 2 big boxes that are a mixture of household paperwork and kiddy papers and art projects. I need to set a timer and just get started on them.

    Hope the birthday girl enjoyed her time regardless of the other stuff.


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