Saturday, September 6, 2008

Simplifying, Saving, Losing, Gaining

My plan after the high school graduation in June was to STOP THE MADNESS, slow down, and reorganize. Well, I didn't get to choose my start date; there had to be a bit more summer craziness and a lot more mind training before that could happen. So, as of September 1 - I'm just a week into it - I'm on my trek to reformatting my daily choices.

1. Simplifying: STAY HOME! DO YOUR WORK! GET RID OF ALL YOUR EXCESS GARBAGE (clutter/papers/magazines)! That's my mantra always, making myself do so is difficult. However, I am drowning in my bright ideas and supplies and office equipment, etc. I had to remind myself several times this week that I didn't need to go out and do that "errand" (translate - get some Diet Coke, look at fabric, go to the grocery and look at magazines). I have a notebook in my purse, and I can write down what I must have and then on a designated shopping day, I can decide if it is a worthy cause.

2. Saving: Well, doing the above should save about 80% of what I spend on the items and bright ideas that are drowning me! I haven't seen the effect of that yet, but I know it's coming if I stick with it. Part of this plan is eating at home, too. I LOVE to eat on the road (cheeseburgers and Mexican food). I love to cook, but I really love to eat out. So, I've worked on that all week and adding a good breakfast to my morning, which actually does lessen the craving for a quick run to Wendy's.

In this category, I can celebrate one success, though, and only my closest friends and family will know what a feat this is. Since August 1, I have "Quit Diet Coke Consumption in the House!" So, you do not have to have a cold stash of 12-ounce cans of DC waiting on me when I arrive. Now that's not to say I don't have DC everyday but just when I'm on the road, and there have actually been a couple of days that I haven't had any, though I did miss my bubbly.

I have been working toward this for quite a while. Mostly because obviously drinking something like DC so often throughout the day is not healthy. I'm 44 next month. I don't want to be fat and 50 and that's my path right now. I don't think DC necessarily makes one fat, but, if you long for something to distraction, no matter what it is, that could be lesson #1. Number 2, I do listen to what I hear, and I have to think that the researchers and doctors who say that all the artificial sweetner screws up the message to our digestive systems and then we might think we are hungry or want a sweet when we don't, yada, yada. The DC all day for me just can't have been that good.

More important than all the personal and published reasons to quit DC for me is my 16-year-old who has wanted me to stop drinking it fanatically for years. She said recently, "Mom, it's just a drink." And, of course, it is just a drink. Why would I continue to do something so ridiculous just because I want to (love to, crave) when I want my daughter to be better than me in all health issues in her life? When she put it out there like that - it's just a drink - what better example can I be than to say, "Absolutely. I'm done." So, stopping purchasing it for home consumption was a big thing, and now she watching me out on the road, too!

Thanks to Jody at JavaJem who let me use her "NO DC" button. She has a great little blog. She is an awesome crafter and knitter dying yarns and sewing. You'll have to read why she quit DC sometime.

3. Losing. Not only body weight but clutter weight. You know all about that, so I won't go on. One thing that really keeps my goals in mind on both fronts is I have friends that take good care of their bodies and their homes. On the clutter-housekeeping subject, this has never been one of my skills. I can work with someone cleaning; it's just carrying on alone that is hard for me. I see the whole huge job and try to think of ways to delegate. My husband, on the other hand, takes things task by task and gets anything done fast. I note that my friends with the loveliest, freshly-cleaned homes also view their work that way. Just get started and get done. Friends who are more like me, well, we struggle with wishing to get to something else, another bright idea on the horizon, and, look, here's that magazine I haven't read yet. I'd better read it now before putting it away ... I have made no success on this front this week, however, I have called, e-mailed, and begged my most organized friend with availability to come take care of my office and papers this month and will compensate her appropriately, too, so she gets something out of this as well. Once this monkey is off my back, I might start doing better.

Oh, and there is FlyLady. I've read that off and on for years. I have the plan printed out to follow.

One more losing success - I've been exercising with a friend on and off by walking and going to exercise class. I'm adding more of that to the schedule.

4. Gaining. Masting all the loss above will be my gain. Simplifying frees up time and energy to take care of myself and family. Saving money is obvious. Saving my health by exercising, not depending on DC everyday, and eating at home. Keeping a clutter-free home and business will be invaluable. Saving my sanity and making good decisions personally and financially by being better organized and managing my time better will be good for EVERYONE.

I understand that it takes 21 days to make a new habit. Well, I'm giving myself 30 days of September to "get started" and then reevaluate into October. Hopefully, though, by working toward all the above and feeling success, it will be obvious to me that there is no need to change the path but to plow foward. I just have to keep reminding myself ....


The Blonde Duck said...

Good luck! You'll do great!

Anna said...

#3 sounds just like me! Queen of Distraction is what I am often called - anything that can distract me, will distract me! This list kinda motivates me - Good Luck! I look forward to hearing how it is going.

Nanette Merrill said...

We could all do with a little or a lot of these items Michele. Good for you. I'm not as motivated as you. But I should be! Thanks for setting a good example.

jacquie said...

good for you. my doc convinced me to get off of diet coke. no soda in this house any longer. i'm cheering you on!

Jody said...

You can totally do it!! Keep at it! Soon you won't even miss it.