I’m a little hard-headed. I’ll admit that. Sometimes I hear wisdom and it takes a while for it to penetrate my thick skull and seep down into my heart, the part of me that will actually at least try to put wisdom into practice.
I don’t know when I first heard the concept of working on a large project for fifteen focused minutes, but my guess it was in my twenties, when I had three small children and no idea how to keep up with the clutter of our household. Not that I implemented that wisdom then. Oh no. Heaven forbid I should have tried something that might have helped!
Fast forward through the years. Now I’m an empty-nester trying to write and to keep up with the clutter of two adults–a task I never imagined would be so difficult! But from those early years of chaos, I’ve come to a place of enjoying order in my world. Not cleanliness, mind you. I can live with dirty. But I have a hard time living with clutter, whether out in the open or behind cabinet or closet doors.
Because of that, I have an ongoing “project” in my task manager app. It’s called Home Organization. And none of the tasks have been accomplished in over a year. I knew that in 2015 that needed to change or I’d go crazy! After being reminded of this concept during an episode of The Productive Woman podcast, I decided to give it a shot. So last week I tackled my most visibly cluttered area–the desk in my laundry room (which doesn’t really function as a desk but as a catch-all for miscellaneous stuff!). I worked on clearing the top and cleaning out the drawers for fifteen focused minutes a day. Just fifteen. Had it written just like that on my to do list and had it set to repeat every day until the task was finished and I could mark it complete.
How long did it take? Five days. All done.
It meant learning to be okay with not finishing it all at once. And that was hard for me. But it feels so good to look at my desk now. And it gives me the impetus to set myself the same fifteen focused minutes a day to work on the next task listed in my Home Organization project.
At this rate, I might be finished organizing my house by summer! And to think, it only took twenty or so years to finally put this particular bit of wisdom into practice.