Sunday, January 8, 2012

UN-Procrastination Day

One evening earlier this week, while sitting in front of the fire trying to compile my to-do list for the next day, I spotted a magazine that I had brought home from the library.  "I'll just read for a bit," I thought as I picked up the magazine and started to read.  I read about how to make a good first impression, some yummy rice recipes, and how to shortcut my spring cleaning (yes, I know it's only January, but I'm still working on my spring cleaning from 2008).  Then I came to an article entitled:  "This Is Your Brain on Procrastination".  Yawning, I thought, "I'll read that tomorrow" -- yep, that was my immediate reaction!  After having a good laugh at myself, and deciding that I might be able to use a few pointers, I settled in to read the article right away.

It turns out that procrastination is a biological thing ... no wait, it's a chemical thing within the body ... hmm, I'm not sure I got that right either ... it's a science thing -- hey, I was an English major, what do I know?  Anyway, the article claimed that procrastinating is something that most people do, but that the trick to overcoming it is to outsmart your brain.  It then suggested 7 ways to curb your procrastinating habit.  The first suggestion was to do the most dreaded job first (a.k.a. eat your frog first).  Wow, this actually relates to what I am working on this week!  (Does that mean that I can call it research instead of procrastination -- that's logical, right?)  Suggestions 2 through 6 were equally interesting, but the 7th suggestion was to have an UN-procrastination day -- a day where you make a list of all the things that you have been putting off and plow through as many of them as possible.  "That's IT!"  I thought, "That's exactly what we need to do!"

So Saturday was named "UN-Procrastination Day" (by the way, I Googled "UN-procrastination Day" while writing this post and have read 3 articles -- just call it more research!).  In the hopes of covering the most ground, we made 2 lists; one for me and one for Paul.  The article talked about a list full of errand-type tasks (things outside the house) but our procrastination lists were very home based, so we decided to tweek the idea a little bit and tackle our house lists.

My list looked something like this:
Christmas Thank yous -- I don't know why, but I have been avoiding this like the plague!
De-Christmas-ify the house -- it's always such a sad day when the tree comes down
Make a blogging schedule for the week -- I need a way to get back on track
Pants and Socks -- I have a pile that is approaching mountain status that need fixing in some way

Paul's list looked like this:
New door for the shed
Bathroom -- patch
                -- sanding
                -- paint trim
Install baseboards in hall
Put down transition strips

The lists don't look lengthy, but once we took into account the time required for each job, plus the fact that we would have 4 little helpers around who would still require some attention and feeding (they are funny that way), we thought it better not to get over ambitious.

By the end of the day, we were very pleased with the results and although we didn't get to everything on the lists, it was a very productive day.  Projects completed:  Christmas thank yous, all Christmas decorations put away (I even fixed anything that needed it before putting it away and took out anything that I hadn't used in the last couple of years!).  The weather didn't co-operate for making a new shed door, but Paul got the bathroom patched and sanded, and we now have baseboards and transition strips in the hall.  I guess that the pants and socks will be my project for the week.

 All in all a great success!  It is such a great feeling to be able to cross chores off our list, but even better is that they were tasks that have been on there for way too long.  Now to celebrate, but first ... just kidding!

1 comment:

  1. Your pants and socks can't beat my sock pile, er, laundry basket full! I swear we have a monster that eats only one sock of the pair! As for procrastination, I should be emptying the dishwasher right now while the boys are outside playing, instead, I'm on here :) What an inspiration you are! I'm off to do my tasks.


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