Cindy’s Weekly Wisdom ~ Follow Through

Cindy’s Weekly Wisdom

Recently I was so pleased with myself. I had done a great job tidying my desk, and I had sorted through all of Clara’s clothes, culling those that were to be saved for her younger sister and those that could go to the thrift shop. I did a great job and was pleased with myself, that is, until I looked at what I had left behind. 

 

Oh a big slap on the forehead! Yes, I had processed bills, permission slips, etc. And yes, I had sorted and folded a big ol’ stack of clothes, but that’s where I stopped. The clothes were still sitting in Clara’s room, and the overflow from my desk project was still sitting in a pile. How embarrassing!

Back in the bad old days of too much clutter, I never finished a project to completion: 90% done was 100% good enough for me, and once again, I had fallen back on my lazy ways. I had broken the rules of happy household living as defined by American advice columnist Ann Landers.

If you open it, close it.
If you turn it on, turn it off.
If you unlock it, lock it up.
If you break it, admit it.
If you can’t fix it, call in someone who can.
If you borrow it, return it.
If you value it, take care of it.
If you make a mess, clean it up.
If you move it, put it back.
If it belongs to someone else and you want to use it, get permission.
If you don’t know how to operate it, leave it alone.
If it’s none of your business, don’t ask questions.
If it will brighten someone’s day, say it.
If it will tarnish someone’s reputation, keep it to yourself. 

And my addition: If you leave it half done, you’re not finished.

Today’s Mini Mission

Ask a family member if they have anything you have given them that they really don’t want but keep because it was a gift from you. Give them permission to declutter it.

Today’s Declutter Item

I don’t need these two watches because I haven’t worn a watch in years so out they go. They have been donated to the thrift store.

Two watches I no longer use

“In daily life we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy.” Brother David Steindl-Rast

It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow


Continue reading with these posts:

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  • Cindy’s Weekly Wisdom – Procrastination Cindy's Weekly Wisdom My mother is a famous procrastinator, at least according to my father. He once bought her a t-shirt with a letter printed on it that said, "Ken, I promise to stop […]
  • Cindy’s Weekly Wisdom ~ Don’t Over Buy (revisited) This post first appeared in September 2012. Since I am in the thick of plowing through the Lost and Found and checking the cleanliness of all the uniforms from the uniform exchange […]

Comments

  1. Cindy, I really like that list. I know what you mean about being all proud of yourself and then seeing what was left behind. I’m there right now. I’m trying to get some things off my desk and done. I find I get interrupted too often and so leave some small piles. It means I need to prioitize my time better so that interruptions are fewer. How! Work on these projects in the evening when there are seldom any interruptions so I can get a project done? Plan for quick trips to the store or doctor appointments better? I’m going to be working on that.

    • Deb J, My personal plan for when I know I’ll lose interest quickly or be interupted frequently is to do each job, no matter how small, to completion. I know that general cleaning and decluttering wisdom says not to leave the room until you’re all the way done, then put away the misplaced items you’ve collected back in their right places, but I don’t think that’s always the best way. Sometimes the best thing to do is pay the bill, make the copy, and shred the receipt (or whatever) prior to moving to the next bill.

      • Cindy, that’s what I try to do too. My problem is that I have a small pile of all these little things and I want them done and gone. Things like a bill from a doctor that has to be disputed, an insurance request for more information from the doctor (& the doctor’s office doesn’t take care of it so I have to bug them about it), and on and on. Each one is a seperate little thing but all of them create a small pile that I want rid of. It can take forever to just deal with one because of phone calls and long waits on the phone. It’s the things like that that frustrate me. I also get frustrated by the time it takes to go to a doctor appointment, the little trips to the store because Mom forgot something, etc.

        • I have a to-do list for exactly those little things. it contains stuff like: do the laundry, make dentist appointment, check due date of library books, write email to professor, pay back your friend, use the last squash for dinner tonight etc etc etc. you get the picture.
          I have a friend who laughed at me for writing down: check opening times recycling center, but first of all, I really do forget that, second of all, there is nothing more satisfying like scribbling out a task once you are done. So the list can actually stay wherever you need it, and all the other piles can go into one folder or basket or whatever solution you have and then just do when you sit on your list. I work with my list at least 3 times a day, but thats another little obsession that might not work with everyone.

  2. Wow, Cindy, again a challenging post.
    It’s spot-on as usual.

    I’ll try my best.

  3. my kitchen decluttering is not completely done…on the to-do list for this week. and btw, i really love your profile pic. great shot!

  4. I so know what you mean. you decide on a rule for yourself how to handle certain things and suddenly you catch yourself in old habits, that you wanted to break… isnt it strange how habits and ways of thinking are coming back if you lose focus just once?
    I am trying at the moment to keep my desk clean at all times. only items allowed are: laptop, pens, folder/papers I work with, lamp and bottle of water with glass (I need to drink more water during the day, having a bottle there helps). I try to clean off the table at evening, so I can start fresh in the morning. its not working everyday, but I am getting there. just remind yourself once in a while.

    I had a surprise visit from my brother today, which is very nice, because he was here for work and we dont meet that often. I seized the chance and asked him to help me with my gardentable, because I didnt have the required tools, and he always has the big tool box in his car. We not only got the table done, but we also made some sort of pinboard for me to hang my work related things on it. and went out to get cake and coffe afterwards. I always laughed at my mum, when she abused visitors for different jobs around the house that she cant do alone, before she gave them a cup of coffee. I totally get it now. 🙂

    • Bad habits can be like a groove in a record, and your personal needle just wants to fall back into them.

      Sounds like the visit with your brother was wonderful. Way to ask for (and received) help when you needed it.

  5. It is nice to know that none of us are perfect and that we can learn from our own experiences as well as from others. What matters is that you realized it and took care of it – don’t beat yourself up! You did a great job.

  6. No perfect, just striving.

  7. I like the last line: If you leave it half done, you’re not finished. I got a few of those type projects myself that I’ve been pretending to be done with. Think I might need to get a move on with those things now.

  8. Great post Cindy,

    Oh man seeing all that gear heading out the door was enough to remind me to empty my car of a few bags of shoes (cough cough 17 of them!!!) Remember when Colleen did the shoe survey, well my girlfriends are definitely shoe fiends, and I was unaware coz I don’t rummage their closets, cupboards, WIR’s, BUT I WILL FROM NOW ON!!!!! 17 bags cleared out of my GF’s house (yes house, they were everywhere in the house) 17 BIG bags, I was so shocked that I agreed to load them in my car and get them to the Charity shop. I just haven’t been able to drop them off yet, I rang and warned them I have a bootload of boots etc on the way! Friday is the day, they have men there to help unload stuff, I am so looking forward to seeing their faces when I explain they aren’t mine!!! Seriously I reckon they are gonna make a fortune with this lot.

    Thanks for the reminder that if it’s not finished it just isn’t finished!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • Dizzy, really? 17 BAGS of shoes? I dont even own 17 pairs of shoes. impressive. and a WELL DONE for you to take care of your girlfriends mess and the good news for the charity shop.