I have discovered the primary factor that determines whether I enjoy housework or detest it on any given day.
And the secret ingredient is…TIME.
When I get up really early in the morning, I have hours to spend before my 9am or 10am piano student arrives. I teach a lot of adults and homeschoolers, so I usually start my day with a lesson (or three).
It’s a quite simple formula really:
early start=good day;
late start=bad day.
In the very beginning of each day, I try to cross as many things as possible off of my to-do list. When I finish my morning routine, I choose from any number of other pleasant things to do: play the piano, write a bit, read and comment on blogs, clean the house.
Yes, I just categorized cleaning the house under “pleasant things to do.” Generally, I’ll read a homemaking book or a cookbook while I relax during breakfast.
This usually kicks off my day and makes me feel like being productive. After that, I’ll throw open the windows, turn up some music, and just meander around the house. Start a load of laundry, tidy up, find something new to organize, clean a bathroom or two, make the bed. Whatever strikes my fancy.
I certainly don’t do everything every day, and I’ll be honest – there are some things that I never do. For instance, I never remember to wipe down switchplates or dust ceiling fans, lol. But the things that do get done add up to make a homey atmosphere, one that my family and I are happy to inhabit.
When I have hours stretching out before me, I never feel like I am wasting it. I don’t have to hurry. I can walk into the bedroom to put away the sheets and pillowcases, and stop to make the bed while I’m there without having to worry about forgetting to put away the rest of the laundry. I’ll get to it when I get to it. For the moment, I am relaxed and enjoying myself.
When I have time, I can allow myself to get sidetracked by any number of little details.
It’s something we all want, but we never seem to have enough of it. And yet, how much of our time do we give away to television, Facebook, the interwebs?
How does one go about making time?
Start by going to bed early. Stop eating and drinking several hours before trying to sleep, and when you lay down, relax and know that you can think, worry, plan in the morning. If you pray before you fall asleep, stop if you can. Give the Lord a better part of your day, and give yourself the freedom to fall asleep without feeling the need to get through your wish-list. If you do need to talk to Him right then, treat Him like a real person and not Santa Clause. Tell Him about your day, ask Him for help, get your sins or your problems off your chest, worship, be thankful, but do not engage in list-making. Go to sleep.
Get up early every single day, even if you didn’t get enough sleep the night before. Sleeping in will only make it harder to go to bed next time. It’s a vicious cycle, and the only way to correct it is to get up early all the time.
Finish by cutting out life-draining, mind-numbing habits and activities. If you watch a movie or jump on Facebook for a few minutes, be intentional. Check your notifications, watch one episode of your favorite series, and then GET BACK TO LIVING YOUR LIFE.
How do TV and movie producers portray a pathetically boring lifestyle? By showing their character chowing down in front of the TV. Ironic isn’t it?