Friday, January 29, 2010

How to FLY, Day "I have no idea"

Okay, so I have to admit that I have no idea what day I am on with my baby steps. I guess I could go back to my calendar and back track but that doesn't really make sense since I haven't actually been following the baby steps like I should be. In my own neurotic way, without even knowing, I have forged ahead and tried to jump headfirst into a bedtime and morning routine. Maybe the Flylady wasn't clear enough about the first 30 days or maybe I just chose to "read-over" that part.

Apparently, I am only suppose to follow the baby steps for the first 30 days. That's it and nothing more. I tell you this so you won't make the same mistake as I did. The point of doing things this way is to get comfortable adding one new habit a day while reinforcing the habits established in days past. Out of these first 30 days, your routines will develop and you won't feel overwhelmed adding too much at once. Of course I missed the whole point of this, found the page that outlines the Flylady's routines and tried to emulate them. And yes, I was more than overwhelmed. While I have never been diagnosed with it, I am completely confident that I have some form of ADD. I cannot, no matter how hard I try, stay in one place for a long time. And this translates to the Flylady website as well. I was so excited about what she had to say that I think I have read every page 3 times. There-in lies my demise.

So now I must decide if I go back to the beginning and do it the right way or forge ahead with where I am. The good news is that every two weeks I get a free day and a re-set of sorts. That is the day that my cleaning company comes. Every other Friday I am as giddy as my kids are on Christmas Eve thinking about coming home after work to my clean and picked up house. So today might be a good day to start back on Day 1 and slowly build my routine. If I only I can restrain myself...

I do want to add that while I haven't been FLYing long and I have apparently been doing it all wrong, I am very encouraged by the results so far. It is helpful to start to put a method behind my madness. And if nothing else, I feel like I have a huge support system of other women who struggle with the same things I do. I love the emails! They keep me going and offer small tips of what others have found to be successful. My husband thinks I am nuts, but he is slowly seeing the benefits of FLYing and even agrees it might be helpful to teach our kids a few ways to keep mom happy. Good luck on your journey!

Monday, January 18, 2010

How to FLY, Day 6 - Mayday! Mayday!

Okay, so I should have called this blog post "How to Crash and Burn." Let me first start by telling you that these past 2 weeks have been the first time in two and a half years that I have worked all 5 work week days in the office. While I love my new job, my "work from home in my sweats while grocery shopping on my lunch break and folding laundry while making calls" is sorely missed. It's been more than a challenge for me to try to get everything done in my precious few hours before bed at night or before work in the morning. All of the laundry, dishes and messes have started to pile up along with the stress and make me one grumpy momma.

Now I must admit that I have not followed the baby steps as I should have. On Monday (day 6), after my revelation that my family should have kicked me out for my terrible rants over the past weekend, I looked at my missed baby step on day 5. I am not sure how the Flylady knew that I would lose my shit on day 5, but she did. She even had some advice on how to ease the tension I would feel on this day, but I chose to ignore her. Had I listened, my day might have gone much differently. Her day 5 baby step reads, "Are you hearing any of those nagging negative voices popping into your head? I want you to take a piece of paper and write down what you hear then I want you to turn those ugly words around and say something nice to yourself to negate the ugly words that they said." Instead of relying on myself to say nice things when I needed, I expected my family to - except I never told them that. I guess I just assumed they would know that I needed some support the way a mom and wife always knows. But alas, life is not that easy. Luckily, I am smart enough to recognize my mistakes and beg my husband for forgiveness. I also explained to him that I may need a little extra "room" in the next couple weeks and if he could bite his tongue and offer a hug instead of giving it back to me, it would be most helpful.

Day 6 was much better after that. Sometimes it just takes a conscious decision to be happier and let go of the small stuff. I even took my bedtime routine to the next level and enjoyed a nice relaxing bubble bath, something I haven't done in over a year. Day 6 was also the first time I have worked out a long time which helped those endorphins work their magic on my mood.

What will day 7 have in store? Who knows. But I am finally buying into to the whole baby steps thing - one day at a time, 15 minutes at a time - however you choose to look at it.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

How to FLY, Day 2

Okay, so yesterday was my first full day of FLYing. I think I did pretty well. My sink was shiny and I was dressed to the shoes. I was even overly ambitious and tried my own bedtime routine. I must admit that again, I did pretty well. I had a clean kitchen, I took about 10 minutes to pick up the house, my laundry had been changed and my dishwasher was set to run while I was snoozing. I took the time to wash my face, figure out what I was going to wear the next day and even cleaned the sinks in my bathroom with Clorox wipes. In fact, what I realized was that my family actually already had their bedtime routine which we named the 8:30 rule. Every night at 8:30 we pause whatever we are doing and get everything ready for the morning. My boys are responsible for making sure their backpacks are ready by the back door, their clothes are laid out, their breakfasts are waiting from them on the table and even their lunches and snacks are all packed. I went to sleep ready to face tomorrow.

And then tomorrow came.

All the problems started with the darn snooze button. Or maybe it was the fact that I hit it like 5 times. Either way, I woke up already behind. My problem is that I alwauy think I have more time than I do. And when the clock told me it was time to leave, my morning routine was a complete disaster. My laundry was where I left it before bed, my dishwasher was only half empty and my sink was definitely not shiny. And as I sit here now, things are pretty much right where I left them this morning. But I am okay with it, at least for the moment. I love to blog, it's like therapy for me. And I am spending time with my family which speaks for itself. One important lesson the Flylady teaches is that if we have a bad day, it's okay. Just start again tomorrow. So here's to day tomorrow and day three of FLYing.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

2010 is my year to FLY

Okay, so every year my resolutions are the same old thing - eat healthy, exercise, lose weight, blah blah blah. So I have decided that this year, I will learn to FLY. And by FLY I mean "Finally Love Yourself." And no, I don't mean offering daily affirmations in the mirror each morning about great I am and how much I love myself. I simply want to be at peace with what I have accomplished each day and what I have not.

Let me explain.

I came upon today where the first thing I read was "The more clutter you get rid of the more peace you are going to find in your clutter free home!" This is without a doubt my motto, like she was a fly on the wall in my life. In fact, I must say this to my family at least 5 times a day. Of course, they think I am insane and unfortunately do not share my passion for organization and cleanliness (which could be because I am the one who is responsible for knowing where everything fact, my stepson said to me just this morning, "I know it is not yours and is not your responsibility to know but do you know where my sweatshirt is?" Sound like I have complained a time or two?...but I digress). Obviously I knew in one second this site was for me. The big difference this site offers is direction and it does so in what they call beginner babysteps. In fact, Marla Cilley (aka the Flylady) tells you that is took her 9 months to de-clutter and organize her house. That number at first scared the heck out of me since I am all about instant gratification. But I continued to read and what I found was something I have needed all along.

The perpetual problem I have is that I have loftier amitions than I have time, energy or even resources. I want it all and I want it now, which coincidently Flylady says we all suffer from. I get home at night from work and the mess I left (meaning I did not have a chance to pick up my family's mess before I headed to the office) is still there staring at me. Instead of being happy that I am home, I have two reactions - stressed that my house is a terrible sight and stressed at the prospect of taking what should be my down time to clean it. My family has homework and practice and a two year old to attend to so most of what needs to be done falls on my shoulders. Isn't my house suppose to be my sanctuary? Yeah right!

Enter the Flylady and her quest to help all of us escape CHAOS (Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome). The plan she asks us to follow starts simply enough with shining your sink. The idea goes that if this becomes your focus everyday, and your sink is always clean and shiny it will become contagious around your kitchen and hopefully around your house. I have to admit that when my kitchen is a mess and dirty dishes are piled high, my stress levels tend to be just as high. I am not sure if a shiny sink will fix all my problems, but I guess I am willing to give it a try. There is even a video that I recommend you take a look at I guarantee it will look familiar.

From there she asks us to take one little baby step each day for 31 days over which time you will have created some good habits.

Also, by signing up I will start to get helpful emails each day (up to 10 per day) that offer helpful hints, things to do each day and testimonials from others who have embarked upon this journey as well. Now you may be saying that is a bit excessive, but I was excited by this prospect. I love getting emails that are helpful and meaning to me and the initial messages have proved to be both.

Okay, so I have read how to get started and I think I am ready to go. My sink has been shined! I plan on writing a little blog each night on my new "babystep" and my success and failures I experienced that day. I invite you to come along on my journey for 2010 and maybe embark on your own journey as well.