Today we welcome the FlyLady, online coach and mentor to millions who are trying to get their home and life in order. Her guest post is about getting your ducks in a row, just in time for our world-record setting event.
This morning I started to think about how this is our perfectionism creeping in once again. We don't seem to be able to do anything, until we get all of our ducks in a row. As my son's paternal grandmother used to say, "You milk your ducks and I'll milk mine." That was her way of telling us to mind our own business. She was so right. I don't know what this has to do with anything, but I loved her and she taught me a lot.
Our ducks tend to run into other people's yards. Until we are able to take care of our ducks, we should not even try to tend to others. Have you ever watched a mother duck with her babies in a row behind her? They follow directly behind her. She is setting the example and she keeps them close to her. She cannot force her family to follow her; if she tried to line them all up it would be a big mass of confusion. As it is, she sets the pace and they toddle right behind her.
I know how you think. With our ability to hyper-focus and our perfection thrown in to boot, we have a tendency to want every thing perfect before we even start. How about that control journal of yours? You want it absolutely perfect before you begin to even think about establishing your routines. This is another excuse for not getting started. Do you hear me on this one? If the control journal is not perfect in your eyes, then you have already failed.
Well I am here to tell you, you are wrong. The control journal is just a notebook to hold your routines. Now listen closely to me. Routines can be established by using post-it notes or simple lists put in a notebook. We are not a publishing a book. It is a tool to guide you through your day; it holds your routines, important phone numbers, grocery list and menus. This is such a simple tool, but it doesn't have to be completely finished before you start to use it.
Your baby steps will help you establish your routines one item at a time. You can do this, but don't obsess about it. So if you have said to yourself, "I'll establish my routines, but first I have to get my control journal made," then you are deceiving yourself once again. It is not the control journal that establishes your routines; it is you. You do the work; you focus on the problem and tackle it with your eyes wide open.
Here is the order that your ducks should be in. You can not force them, you just start the process and it will all fall into place behind you.
- Shine your sink
- Get dressed to shoes, fix your hair and face
- Lay out your clothes for tomorrow
- De-clutter 15 minutes a day
After you have established this small morning and before bed routine, you can begin to add more things. It is not that you even have to think about adding them, it is a natural progression. As you get good at something, you don't have to think about it any longer. You will also have more time to accomplish things and you will be looking for ways to fill this precious time. I know you don't believe me, but it will happen if you will let it and and not think about it too much. Let the system guide you. Babysteps!!!! Plan you menus on your Cozi Calendar. We have added our zones and daily missions to our Cozi/FlyLady calendar. You can use your Cozi calendar to help you get your "Ducks in a Row!"
- Menu planning
- Laundry routines
- Basic weekly plan
These will all fall right into place, when you get the basics out of the way.
Are your ducks almost ready to FLY?
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