I’ve never seen a woman who can work more than my mother. In fact, if she has any fault, it would be that she doesn’t know how to take a break. However, she taught me not to put things off and since I have had more and more children, I’ve realized the value of doing things right away. Sometimes it means hanging up my clothes when I take them off (which I still can’t seem to do) and sometimes it means starting a 2 hour long project when you only have 15 minutes to work with.
It is often said that we don’t know how long we have here on earth and to use what time we have as best we can. I’d like to boil it down to something more simple: As a mother, I don’t know exactly how many more minutes I’m going to have to clean out the diaper bag before a disaster strikes, so I better make the most of it.
Lately, I’ve been working on another part of avoiding procrastination. Work before play. Mother used to tell me that if I was too sick to go to school, I was too sick to play afterwards. This can also apply to motherhood. Since in a lot of ways I am my own boss, it’s easy to decide that I can go play even though there are things around the house that need to be done. Now don’t get me wrong, I could work all day, all week, and all night long and there would still be things that need to get done, but I’m talking about the essentials. This week I’ve been focusing on dishes, laundry, and the living room. That means if I’m going to take a break, I try to make sure that the dishes are washed, the living room is relatively tidy, and the laundry is caught up. In the long run I know that having these things done makes me more relaxed and more prepared for those “surprise” situations that happen every day.
I remember doing lots of spontaneous things with my family growing up. Everything wasn’t always picture perfect at our house, but my mother did try to stay on top of the dishes, laundry, and the orderliness of the main family room. I think it paid off in how we were able to drop what we were doing and “go and do”. Sometimes it was for someone else, sometimes it was just a fun opportunity that came along, but always it was easier to manage if the essentials were covered.
The other place I have noticed that avoiding procrastination helps is in the evenings. If I just take a few minutes and prepare for the next morning, it helps that morning go MUCH better. My brain doesn’t operate in the morning unfortunately, so if I use it in the evening when it does work to plan out what needs to happen the next day, all of us are better off.
So, here’s to not putting off till tomorrow what I can do today!