Saturday, February 9, 2013

Becoming a Do-er

This past week has been peculiarly ideal and I'm a bit confused as to exactly why.  "Ideal" in that the house is very very clean and orderly.  It might have started with me moving all our bookshelves together into what is now officially "the study", thus making it a little clearer what the purpose is of each room, so I've been able to shuffle and sort and weed out the clutter better.  I've also been doing a little bit more of the things I want to do, in my ideal "vision of my family life" world, such as making the heart wreath, doing the little valentine advent, I've even had "read aloud time" with Abi and "quiet time" after that per Large Family Logistics' recommendation, that was really nice for the chi of the house. 

I've also had my "morning routine" mapped out in my head and that's helped me start off each day on the right foot (and go to bed on time so I can get up and face it) ~ I've gotten up everyday this week at 6:00 for some personal scripture and study time.  I did that while we were in Chile and it was great, but our life was so simple then, in a small apartment and living with very little material possessions.  Still, I think it's helped me be on track spiritually during the day.  Anyway, not sure what it's been, but Corey and I and the kids have all been amazed and scratching our heads a bit as to what's made the difference.  I don't think I've made the kids work much harder, although I do think I've been more focused, but it hasn't felt draining and I haven't felt overwhelmed.

I'm wishing I really knew for sure what the key was so that I could share it and help someone else who is drowning, as I was last week and the week before that.  But reading with the kids, doing a craft, little things like that I've always pushed back until after I've finished cleaning the kitchen or doing laundry, I've done them this week cause they've been on the schedule.  I read this last night in "Dare, Dream, Do" by Whitney Johnson, and think that it might hold part of the answer - page 35...
Haven't many of us said "I'll start dreaming once I wrap up with X, Y and Z project."  At the same time, we are asking ourselves, "Why do I keep putting things off?  There's so much to do but I can't get anything done."  Perhaps we have it backwards.  Perhaps having goals for ourselves is not something to do after we've wrapped up X, Y and Z projects.  Perhaps daring to dream is a goal we need to pursue now, because it's key to getting those X, Y and Z projects done.

Psychologist Timothy Pychyl writes in an article titles "Teenagers, Identity Crisis, and Procrastination" that if we can't answer the questions "Who am I" and "What am I?" we're more likely to procrastinate.  In other words, the more people know who they are, the less likely they are to procrastinate.  (I am a mom!  I am a homemaker, and I want to be good at it, I can be good at it!)  Pychyl explains the interconnectedness between identity and agency as follows: "Identity is that knowledge of who we are... Agency is the belief that we are in control of our decisions and responsible for our outcomes... it means we make a difference, we make things happen, we act on the world.  Thus, being an active agent depends on identity, or knowing who we are."

Perhaps, then, the best thing we can do it to put our busyness to the side, and instead focus on our identity and our dreams - or "Focus on your To-Be List, before the To-Do List."  When we return to that to do list we might just find we're actually beginning to get things done.

Our vision of what we want our family to be has helped, and then starting to plan, schedule, and DO the things we dream about, I'm amazed that I'm actually finally beginning to get things done.  Hope next week is more of the same!  :)

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