Motivation is doing.

 

My mom always had this three word phrase taped above her kitchen sink. Every time I washed my hands I would read it. It never really resonated until years later… I cannot tell you how true this is. So many of us WAIT for the motivation to get started on whatever it is we need to get done. Have you ever noticed that once you begin (with or without the motivation) you start to FEEL motivated!? This is a very simple concept yet a difficult one to apply. A tried and true method that I’ve used with my family for several years is the 5-minute clean up. We identify the space that needs tidying, set the timer and MOVE. The limited time provides the motivation because we all know there’s an end! Oftentimes, however, once we see how quickly we were able to declutter and PUT BACK, we finish up the loose ends after the timer goes off. That said- the rule is- everyone can stop after five if they want to. The next time you’re feeling unmotivated, remind yourself that DOING might just be the necessary step to get you going. Try it. And, if that’s not enough to nudge you toward action, set the timer ; )

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Morning routines

Do you have one? If so, do you stick to it? Have you been living reactively vs. proactively? Unfortunately I am in the former category. I know we all have to wake up, get dressed, eat breakfast (DRINK COFFEE), brush our teeth, and gear up to leave, however I have yet to sit down and truly create a routine. Some mornings we literally have two hours (my kids wake up early!)  to prepare for the day and yet STILL leave the house with one minute to spare… if that ;/ The challenge is having kids at different stages that are CONSTANTLY evolving. As they grow older we count on them to be more independent, but this can also mean it takes longer to get out the door. My family and I have started having family “meetings” on Sunday nights to discuss what’s working, what’s not… and are (clearly) still ironing out this part of our day. My daughter suggested we create a list of the things that need to be done every morning before we leave for school. (Sheesh. Why do I have such a blindspot for the obvious? I’ve only been hearing this since my first baby was born ten years ago) Alas, we set it out during breakfast as a (gentle, and hopefully more peaceful than me repeating myself over and over) reminder each morning. The kids really respond to having a visual to keep them on task. For the pre-readers images work well, so I hear. I think the lesson here is to take a look at your day and really examine its pace. Sometimes it’s easier just to go along with the status quo because it doesn’t feel like there’s sufficient time to truly problem solve. Rather than approach this in a perfectionistic, there’s only one way approach – just begin. Identify the bumps in your day (at least the predictable ones) and begin to identify new ways to navigate them. Release some of the control and invite your family to help you create new solutions in the interest of a more peaceful home. When given the chance my kids can bring it! I bet yours will too. There’s nothing like a new perspective. Here’s to problem solving, working together and remembering to be more “loveable”💕 at the breakfast table.

It bears repeating. Take. Five.

I’ve decided that having organized storage is everything. My drawer of containers is a hot mess and something that I wrestle with regularly. I am OVER it.  This drawer is never completely empty which means I’m never actually using ALL of my storage containers. It’s always a hard call, because you know the minute they’re gone I’ll need them… but I am donating and recycling what I don’t use and am confident I will find a solution and move on. Here’s the result. Sexy, right?  ; )

Find the pocket(s) in your day.

The space under my sink drives me nuts every time I need something. And yet, it’s been disorganized for months. Why do we do this to ourselves!? We live with things a certain way when they could be easily (and swiftly) remedied in just five minutes. Today I decided to test this theory and find a pocket in my day to see if I could eliminate this daily stressor, once and for all!

Update: I did it! Successfully… and it is going to make my day to day So. Much. BETTER! Yes, I can take it one step further and spruce up the space but organizing had to happen first. Five minutes = Done! (Ps: I found a clip from a pack of Command clips that I bought for my daughter’s room. I think it might just be the perfect solution to hold my rubber gloves ; )

The minimalistish amount of storage in my midcentury kitchen ;)

Do you ever open your pantry/cupboards and realize that you have nothing for dinner? I honestly ask myself how it’s possible that my pantry is spilling over and yet we’ll probably need to order in…. Pathetic. Today I vow to take back the very little space that I have to begin with! It might mean a few marshmallow curry casseroles to get through what I’ve got, but I. Am. Cleaning House! Here’s to going to the grocery store with a plan and saying no to shopping the shelves with a hungry belly. Yes, I’ve been doing this for years. Yes, I should have it figured out by now. No, I haven’t. Thankfully, today’s a new day. Try and try again? Stay tuned…..

Update: Done. Nothing major except now I know what I have… and what I need… AND something to prepare for dinner tonight! Hooray! #itsthelittlethings

How do you prioritize?

How and when do you find the time to “declutter”, “organize”, “minimize”, etc… Are you tired of thinking about these things!? It can truly be exhausting if you don’t tackle it mindfully and with intention. Like I previously mentioned, I love setting the timer to keep me in check… but what happens when the timer goes off? It’s never a perfect science. Something important to keep in mind is to bite off only as much as you can chew (obvious I know, but worth the reminder). When you take on a new project, whether it be the sock drawer, the kids’ art supplies, your pile of paper, etc. be sure to set clear limits prior to beginning so that you are realistic about what you have time for. We’ve all been pulled away from a project that we were mid-way through and then left with a pile of – whatever –  to trip over for the next several days. That feels worse than the disorganized drawer!! I’d love to hear how and when you find the time so that you don’t feel like your pursuit for a more minimal life is actually monopolizing your life!