Friday, October 5, 2007

Procrastination and Accountability

So, my mother is coming for a visit, YAY. She'll be here for Meg's birthday. Meg is excited.

I am a procrastinator. I had a week and a half to clean. I haven't.

I'm posting before photos, and will post again as progress ensues. If you wish to aid in motivating me, check back, feel free to comment, to tell me to stop posting in the fora, and get back to work, UNLESS I can post evidence that the room is done.

I may post more before shots.

Help me be accountable?


The guest room at noon Friday.

Meg's room at noon Friday. She comes by it honestly, as you can see.

My bathroom at noon Friday. Not the highest priority, because I can close my bedroom door.


the jewelry :ninja! said...

make meg clean her own room. she's old enough for a big girl bed, she's old enough to clean her own room.

there, that's 1 less room you need to worry about!

geelizzie said...

Ha, those pictures look like you snuck into my daughter's room when she was little. Come to think of it, she's still that messy and she's 32 now.
And I used to be a neat freak but am starting to become almost as messy as your pictures!
Just stuff everything into big garbage bags and hide them in the garage or somewhere.

Darlene said...

That's what MY apartment looked like before!

Anonymous said...

I don't have a blogger account. But I hope this helps.

My mom let our place look like that when I was a kid. It kind of bothered me, but mostly didn't... until I grew older.

When I was old enough to want my girlfriends over, they said things that hurt (but they were TRUE) when they saw the mess. Sometimes, kids who had no problem with it, had parents who did. Some of those parents politely made sure their child never came to my house again.

The worst? I couldn't have birthday parties, have a friend in for lunch, or even have gilfriends spend the night often, like other kids did. The one time I had a birthday sleep-over, we held it as a campout in my neighbor's backyard. Why the neighbor's? Because the kids would need to use the bathroom and such at my house, and it was a mess. The neighbor's wasn't. I was so excited to have a party, but afraid the kids would start asking me why we were in the neighbor's yard, or that they would somehow find out how messy our place was, and then as a group they'd all say something. That was the last birthday party I ever had. :( Having parties at other venues to get around it, wasn't the answer. I wanted to have an occasional get-to-gehter at my house, but my mom could not get her act together.

By teen age, I had to stop inviting people over altogether, because teens are more aware. Thanks, mom. She even asked me repeatedly (in numerous kind ways) if I was bothered by the mess, and I always fibbed and said no. When she asked if I was fibbing, I still said no. My room was a mess too, so don't take that as a sign that your daughter is okay with it, you know?

When I moved out at 19, I learned it was a struggle for me to keep my own apt. clean. I was jealous that it was so easy for all my friends.

The older I got, the more problems it caused me. I had to make constant excuses. Upsetting in itself, and sometimes people figured out something was up after the 3rd excuse. Co-workers couldn't come in, when they needed to stop by. People who popped by to give me a simple gift, had to be headed off at the door, and this confused them and seemed rude. Many of my dates were turned off when they saw my floor covered in junk. I later married a guy who was okay with it, but with time, he no longer was. Why? Because his friends, coworkers and family couldn't even come by either! He begged, and I tried repeatedly to clean up. But because I had no good guidance with it while growing up, I just struggled. constant arguments ensued. He began throwing bits of things out here and there (on the sly and in desperation), and in doing so, accidently threw out my yearbooks, letters from my long-dead grandparents, school photos, etc. I was upset, but I couldn't blame him.

It was my late 30's before I realized how to take control. That's many years of uneeded stress, prior to that! For your daughter's sake, help her learn now, because it will probably affect her many times in the future. Even if doesn't affect YOU, your daughter is not you and she won't be 20 years from now either.

Take control, because you are not living alone. You have a child to teach.

Lynn - aka PinkPolkaDotPoodle said...

Responding to anonymous...

ARgh... to the anonymous poster... I thank you for the time it took to type all of that. You assume a bit much, though. My home, 90% of it, is beautiful, well-kept, and clean.

My 5 y/o daughter has a messy room. My bathroom is messy right now, because I recently reorganized the closet, and didn't finish.

The guest room is the catch all room. Stuff is in there that was gone through several months ago, but never finished its way out the door to be sold, given away, or freecycled.

My children have friends over all the time. We are not neighborhood pariahs. My kids are well adjusted, as am I.

I'm sorry you grew up in such a troubled situation, but let me assure you, that is not the situation here.

I'm not sure whether to leave the comment up, or to delete it. I know your intentions were good, but they are extremely off the mark.

Anonymous said...

"I am a slob, I suppose."

Sounds a bit like you're not even sure, or that you don't want to commit and own up to the fact. You ARE a slob. (not meant mean at all).

Here are things that help:

1.) Unplug the computer. You can get by with checking convos only oncer per day. Put a quick message in your shop, if need be. Unplugging the computer, will make it harder for you to not plunk down constantly to do unecessary things on Etsy. Unplug your mouse & keyboard if need be.

2.) Do only 1 room at a time until you finish it. Being scattered and moving between rooms without finishing one, breaks your concentration too much.

3.) Lay out 3, separated towels in each room you're working in. Place a piece of paper in front of each, stating the following 3:

A.) Keep Pile
B.) A yardsale/Ebay pile
C.) THROW OUT pile.

4.) Most importantly, time yourself! If you don't ahve a goal in mind, and you're already a procrastinator, you're just asking for trouble. Give yourself 2 hours to complete each room at MOST. Set a goal like, "Anything not picked up and put on a pile within 2 hours, needs to be trashed or given to charity. No exceptions.

5.) Be realistic with yourself about the amount of storage space you have in your house. If you find yourself with hardly anything in the junk or Ebay pile, look at the "keep pile" and tell yourself you will throw out 50% (or whatever) of what's in the keep pile, if you weren't honest with yourself, within the 2 hour time limit you gave yourself.

6.) Remind yourself that if the item is really important, it deserves respect. the fibers in clothes on the floor get broken down over time, from stepping on them, and from laying in a crumpled state for months, or even weeks. If you can't handle keeping them hung up, or in a dresser, then you don't get to buy more things till you learn to control th problem. Not just clothes, but anything.

7.) Dustmites. Even if you think your place is clean, it's not. It's full of dustmites and they are not healthy. They are in and on everything that's laying around. Don't fool yourself. Bacteria is a factor too.

8.) When you find yoursel trying to watch tv, phoning friends, computer, store, whatever - do what you need to do to stop yourself. Unplug everything.

9.) Get your daughter to help with her OWN room, even if she's a toddler. You must show her how important this clean up lesson is. No need to be a slave driver and wear her out or anything, but she does need to begin learning immediately. Not allowing her to be part of the cleaning process this weekend, could confuse her later. Also, having her work on her room, will help you focus on what you need to be doing in the rest of the house.

10.) Once you get your place cleaned up, make sure you have enough organizatonal stuff to put things in. Not having any, contributes to slobbiness and procrastination. This does not mean you should have 30 boxes filled with junk lying around your house. Just things inside cabinets, to put on shelves, etc.

11.) maybe invite a friend over to help you? They can be a lot more objective about what is junk and what isn't, than someone who obviously has trouble in the first place. If you're embarrassed, tell them you are, and that you desperately need help. If you feel it necessary, offer to babysit in exchange, drive their kids for a week, something anything to help them in return.

12.) When you have too many things (or too much of the wrong thing), a sign of that is a horribly messy home. Learning which things in your life are necessary and unecessary, will help you keep a cleaner home, much, much easier.

13.) When you let your home become this bad, remember you're going to find yourself in an emergency (such as your mom telling you a week ago she was coming), again.

14.) Best of luck. :) Turn off everything! :)

Anonymous said...

I'm the person who commented about my mom. No offense intended at all. :(

You asked for advice, I gave it as you requested. If it doesn't fit you, that's fine. Do not take it personally.

You asked for motivation, that's what I was trying to give. Nothing more.

But the long comment back from you (whether it took 1 minute, 2 minutes or 5 minutes), shows that you could be cleaning, rather than writing out long comments. In fact, don't reply to us at all. Just clean.

You asked for help, don't take it personally. It's just help, even if you think it doesn't fit, or it really does not fit. I promise. :)

Michele said...

I thought I was looking at my own house, except yours is neater! you have distinguishable piles. I have avalanches......I have tried kinda hokey at first, but it works for me.......