Through learned behavior from different, well um, negative "life experiences" I believed that everything I did was just not good enough rather than baby steps forward. I could encourage anyone and everyone that they should be proud of each and every achievement no matter how small it may seem, yet if my own action was small I would berate myself for not doing it better. While I never used the word "failure" for myself it was always tossing around in my mind, sometimes a quiet but constant little whisper that was just enough to keep grabbing my attention away from whatever task was being attempted; upon distraction that whisper would become a screaming, screeching voice bringing a pain so deep I was at times reduced to tears.
Lists were, to me, evidence of all the things I didn't do. While all "the experts" (many I truly admire, including my oldest daughter) kept insisting successful people make lists, my answer was always "yea, but..." or "they just don't work for me!" I could not get past those things that didn't get crossed off and the thought of carrying those items forward--adding them to the next day's already full record--was not only failing but also impossible and overwhelming!
I stumbled across another book, about a week into this jambalaya of techniques I'm implementing, called Organizing for Your Brain Type: Finding Your Own Solution to Managing Time, Paper, and Stuff , by Lanna Nakone . After only reading the first few paragraphs I thought, "She knows ME!" The descriptions of my brain type(s) seemed tailored just for me. Being able to connect accurately and directly to a specific "type" allowed me to further break free of the hard barriers I had built in my mind against organization, and left me with an empowered feeling with the knowledge that I can't possibly be alone in this if there is a published book! "Number of times a piece of paper is moved before it is tossed or filed: 8", writes Ms. Nakone. Reading her analyses and suggestions was like reading something in a language I hadn't realized was my native tongue. Everything made sense and filled me with a sense of calmness in attitude I have never experienced in my life.
I am still a work in progress, I still have far to go. Last week I added several new post-it notes to the top of my calendar. Not every post-it was making it to the calendar day and I was starting to feel discouraged. Rather than scrap the entire project (as I would have in the past), I looked those post-its straight in the--well, okay, I looked straight at those still up top and said, "it is OKAY, I'll move you a different day!" And you know what? It really was okay, because still that calendar day box was filled with completed tasks! Realizing a couple of the notes were too broad or had more than one task on them, I began to erase certain things. My initial self-reaction was negative and punishing; I felt my throat begin to tighten and burn with the urge to cry making an attempt to surface. NO! I was not going to, and did not, allow that stinkin' thinkin' to have its way with me, I'm no longer that kind of girl!
I erased and edited. An example: one sticky note had "tighten legs of living room table" and "clean living room table". I erased the first part and changed "clean" to "straighten". Clean is a perfection word in my book (no, it's not written just yet...lol!), but straighten is kinder and more flexible. I went to write the "tightening" on the next day in my planner but had the brilliant idea to write it 3 days further into the week, knowing that I still have a tendency (inexplicable--though it is attributed to my brain type!) to avoid something written down. I tricked my own brain into tightening the table the next day! Ron commented on my previous post how good rewards are; it may seem silly to need rewards at my YOUNG age yet perhaps by considering it "silly" was another way I was being far too harsh with myself. The journey continues...join with me!
There's a website for Ms. Nakone's book! Organized World Website