As I’m closing in on the completion of the 31 day challenge of committing to change, I must confess that my posts are less and less about areas that I’ve identified that need change and more about things I’m learning along the way or techniques that I use to help me with the commitment. Today is a mixed bag of ideas and thoughts that have been floating around my mind for the past 23 days.
Opportunity Cost | I took a microeconomics class in college and while I don’t remember much, the one thing I do remember is the idea of opportunity cost. When I told you about making household items from scratch, I realize I’m saving dollars, but there is an opportunity cost in the form of my time. Even though my time is a little more abundant these days, I still have to be mindful of not wasting it. I need to remember that there is always a cost or price for everything. Doesn’t mean that it’s not worth paying, but it does mean that I need to be aware of the cost.
Working smarter | There is a real danger is flitting away the hours of a day. I do my best to come up with a rough schedule everyday of things I must do, things I want to do and things I’d like to do. There are commonalities to every day, like walking the dogs, exercise, meals, reading, housework, but the rest of the time spent on my to do list in order of importance. This is where pure, unadulterated discipline comes into play. I was just introduced to an e-book called “21 Days to a More Disciplined Life” by Crystal Paine through the Frugal Girl. I’m 75% of the way through and it’s excellent. I feel like we’re kindred spirits. And you can get the e-book for 99 cents until Thursday, Oct 25th. Click on the book link above if you’re interested.
Changing my methods | As you know I’m a collector :-). I collect ideas, have for years. Any magazine I would look through ended up as a shadow of its former self because of all the articles/pictures/craft ideas I tore from its binding. Or while reading my crafty blogs, I would find ideas and print them off on my printer. I would take these ideas and glue them into 5-subject college-ruled notebooks for future reference. And each notebook held a single topic like ‘home ideas’, ‘crafts’, ‘gardens’, etc. I have a couple of shelves in my craft room devoted to these notebooks. About a decade ago, I switched to a plastic sheet protector/3-ring binder system and they join my notebooks on the shelf. Then about a year ago I discovered Pinterest. If you are aware of Pinterest then I don’t have to say much more, but I will. I LOVE PINTEREST. It’s my notebooks; just much neater and requiring less space/paper/ink. Now when I find an idea, I pin it to one of my boards and wait for the day when I need to retrieve it. With the billions of ideas floating around the webosphere these days and the ability to corral those ideas into the organizational marvel that is Pinterest… well I’ve changed my method of saving ideas! Here are pictures of projects from some Pinterest parties I’ve been to.
Time | Time is constant, but there are moments when it appears like it’s flashing by or slugging along. We’ve all experienced that: the days before the vacation seem to drag on and the actual vacation is over before you know it. I’ve been thinking about time these days in terms of how I work best. As I’ve been writing this blog and have outlined areas that I want to commit to lasting change, I’ve realized that I don’t actually have enough time in the day to devote to all those areas. I can’t walk dogs/exercise/declutter/read/sort out yarn/menu plan/do housework/yard work every day because there just isn’t the hours. I can, however, devote small chunks of time to the areas I want to focus on and whittle away at the mountain of yarn until the job is done. OR I can decide to just knuckle down and block at huge sections of time to just get the job done. Some activities are going to be part of my days every day for the rest of my life, like exercise and eating. But organizing my craft room is a one time activity. Maintaining the organization will become a daily activity, but the initial organization is a one time gig.
I know these seem a little haphazard, but it’s a little how I feel these days. Life is starting to take shape, but there are still areas that are a little fuzzy. Fuzzy’s okay, but being someone who loves structure and purpose, fuzzy’s not my best place. So I’m going to keep on decluttering, blogging, cleaning, cooking, walking and working on my commitments to lasting change.
“What’s wrong with devoting every minute of every day to us? We do that for you.“