Attitude: “Not Today” is OK

In which I recount my third attitude from a blog challenge by the lovely Katie W.

I have been working on Katie’s blog challenge. Let me recap: Katie challenged me to “Decide on an attitude (or four) that you want and believe you can change.” I’ve interpreted this challenge in the realm of my big five, and did really well on week one, “This will help.” My second attitude “Awesome is as awesome does” took a bit more work, and continues to take a bit of focus. But I turned my attention to my next major goal: to have routines that support but not restrict me.

I’ve been working on hitting that balance for a few weeks now, and I honestly have some trouble. On some days, it really just feels like one more thing, and these days I’m feeling like one more thing might break my sanity. (Makes you really want to hang out with me in blog-space, right?) So I’ve been focusing on the idea that choosing not to do something is as productive as deciding on regular routines in the first place. It feels very wrong, but I need the regular routines just as much as I need the ability to blow them off to prevent myself from getting too stressed.

Here are a few of the things I’ve been working on:

I started with some routines that I’ve already been working on over my 101. I’ve been exercising in the mornings, and making the bed first thing.

daily cleaning cardsI’ve re-written my daily cleaning cards to be more realistic than my old arrangement used to be. Look at all that! Now it says something more like one specific load of laundry, two specific small jobs in a room. Just enough to help me keep ahead of the rest of the mess, but isn’t going to feel like a big deal, no matter if I’m completing the chores or blowing them off.

fa open faced sandwichesI am trying to make one new food-adventure meal each week. I’ve really completed this goal, just haven’t gotten around to posting about it. I like the challenge of making something new. It makes me think more about dinner, and encourages us to eat at the table and talk to each other rather than ending up in front of the TV, watching something that neither of us care about.

Related to the two strategies above, I’ve also been making a weekly meal plan and identifying a few things that we want to tackle around the house each week, and a larger chore that we’ll each take care of. It gives us a bit of flexibility as to when we do the work, but gets things done. I like that we each are responsible for something — it helps me not to feel like I’m the only one working around the house.

I’ve been trying to get back to blogging and enjoying it. I have a bunch of goals that I’ve worked on, but blogging that progress has too often felt like such a chore, rather than a supporting part of my routine. I’ve always written this blog for myself, and counted my interaction with the few people who read it as a bonus. I’m going to make more of an effort to be present here, because it is one more way that I can fight the funk.

The big attitude adjustment comes with giving myself a pass for a day, for a week, whatever I need. I am challenging myself more, but not beating myself up if I can’t meet my own goals. It’s a hard balance to hit, between being reasonable about things and still giving myself enough work to make a difference in my surroundings. I know that visual clutter brings my mood down, but some days I just want to crash with a book or a new TV show. I know that blogging helps me focus on my progress and feel like I’m improving myself, but some nights I just can’t stand one more minute in front of the computer.

I haven’t fixed my attitude on this yet, but it’s better. And hey, it’s ok that I haven’t gotten everything figured out for today.