Thursday, May 16, 2013

Life: Take it one little piece at a time

I have such a hard time remembering this. But if you have a daunting prospect in life, any big project, skip the big overwhelming picture and break it down into small, manageable portions, a little bit at a time and it will get done.

Maybe not today. Not tomorrow. But eventually it will get done.

Some life events that might require this approach:
  • Packing to move. 
  • Packing for vacation. 
  • Getting married. 
  • Getting divorced. 
  • Finding a job. 
  • Cleaning your house. 
  • Removing clutter. 
  • Unpacking. 
  • Establishing yourself in a new town. 
  • Getting your yard in shape. 
  • Weight loss. 
  • Changing a habit. 
  • Finishing college.
  • In our case, getting through the school year!
If you do a little bit every day, you will get there. You really will.

One section at a time. One piece at a time. One box at a time. One room at a time. One window at a time. One day at a time. Whatever it is you want to do, break into one-at-a-times.

I've learned after many moves over the years how to do this. Start with one box, then another, and do maybe five a day. In a couple of weeks you're done.

When I had to clean a 1500-square-foot house to sell, I took it one room, one day at a time. In two weeks I was done. When I moved here to Kansas, I had an entire room full of boxes. I did one a day. In a few weeks, it was done and I didn't stress too much. But I made a point to do that one box every single day.

Right now it's the garden. Hoe-ing is hard work. I likened parenting to gardening the other day and as I chopped and smoothed, chopped and smoothed, and was exhausted, with a blister or two, I thought, whew, that really was a good analogy.

But you can see in these photos I started with one spot. Over the course of a couple days, with help from Brady and Jase, it got done. A little section at a time. One at a time.

Now I'm working on a larger parcel a block away. Whew. Did some today. Will do some tomorrow. And Friday. And over the weekend. It'll get done. But I'll take it in bite-size portions to keep my stress level down.

As a parent, I fight to take it one day at a time. I may have a larger goal, but I have to think only about today. Deal with today's successes and failures. Try again tomorrow. If I don't do it this way, I get overwhelmed and drained.

Whatever you're dealing with in life, trying the piecemeal idea and see if it works for you. Here was our progress:

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