Bam! Life Happens!

Hi Mama! Tell me if you can relate to this:

I was plugging along really great! I was focused on my “School Year’s Resolutions” and making great progress. My to-do list at home was under control. Regular routines were in place. My house was (relatively) clean. We were making it to all our scheduled activities and even making it on time. Lunches were made, breakfasts eaten, laundry done. Then bam! Something happened that threw it all out of whack.
In my case, it was a car accident – rear ended in a three-car hit-and-run accident. Fortunately we (my son and I) are fine. Beyond whiplash we have no major injuries. I am very grateful. But now there are doctor’s visits, endless phone calls with insurance agents, a rental car to arrange, a new car to shop for, negotiations to make, a nagging headache and shoulder pain… And suddenly the house is a mess, there are papers piling up on the counter, I forget about a meeting at my son’s school, my dog eats one of our passports and my checkbook, my step-son informs me that he and all his room mates have scabies (don’t get me started on how grossed out I am – I’m not sure if he is allowed to come home for Christmas!), a Halloween costume must get made, and the weekend is obliterated with soccer games and a Cub Scout camp-out. How can it all get out of balance so quickly? And the more behind I get the more I just want to curl up in my sweats and watch mindless TV.
Please tell me you can relate to this. Surely I’m not the only one who gets dismally sidetracked.
So how do you get back on track? By doing one thing. Dispose of one piece of junk mail. Empty one overflowing garbage can. Wash one dish. Make your bed. Pay one bill. It doesn’t matter what you start with. Just do one thing.
There are those who will tell you that you need to take stock of what needs doing. Make a list and prioritize it. Then start with the most pressing task. It’s true. Prioritizing a list is helpful. Clearly, paying your water bill before the city shuts it off is more important than sorting through the junk mail piling up in the front entrance. But sometimes it’s overwhelming to look at the big picture. Sometimes you just need to start – anywhere – and build some momentum before you can see what is most important. This is a strategy I used when writing papers in grad school. Start in the middle. I could stare at a blank paper (or screen) forever trying to figure out how to start. So instead I would skip the beginning and start somewhere in the middle. I would pick something I knew I wanted to include in the essay and write it down. Then later, when I had a better idea of how it was shaping up, I could go back to the beginning.
So, I did a load of laundry and swept the floor. I could see it needed doing. The rest will come. I know it will. I’ll just keep plugging away one thing at a time.
I know this article isn’t the one I promised you about modeling values for your children – but it’s better than staring at a blank screen. You gotta start where you’re at!
PS. If you are looking for more strategies to get things done, accomplish a goal or develop a habit, consider joining the next G.o. B.i.g. class. Connect with others who can cheer you on and hold you accountable. Click here for more information.

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