Spring Fling — It Out!

A lovely season – charming weather, charming sounds in the trees, and so many things to do. Who could possibly stay indoors? Well, silly me – I asked you to stop in your tracks and take a good hard look at where in your life you needed to do a little springtime sprucing – literally or figuratively. This week’s Kuhnspiration challenge was: Where in your home, your schedule, your priorities, do you need a little spring cleaning and how will you go about tending to this during the next few months?

I’m curious to know: how did you do with that scary challenge?

I thought more about it myself and came to the conclusion that I need far too much to handle in one blog, but perhaps there were a few places I can focus on — for now. What I need will probably require professional therapy so instead I will focus on what I can do to help myself find a little peace of mind – to help me in my work, in my home and in my serenity of spirit. Even just one area a piece will do wonders for my sanity, I’m sure of it.

WORK –

Expenses/Mileage/Tax Documents for 2012 – I’ve worked for myself for 3 tax years now and am in my fourth. Though I have a wonderful system in place for tracking everything, I make the mistake EVERY YEAR of waiting until far too late into the year or in some cases THE NEXT YEAR to actually sift through these piles of paper and enter the digits into this great system. Yes, I agree. That does defeat the purpose. So I’m vowing to get my first four months of 2012 organized by end of this month (April) for tax purposes and do so with the next four months at the end of August and hopefully the final four in December (but most likely that will be February or March of the next year). At least I won’t be trying to think back to LAST January in March, a year later!

HOME –

My closet. Ugh.

I can’t even leave the door open if someone walks into our bedroom. It is completely overrun with what I like to call the many sizes of Chris. I have a difficult time parting with old clothes – sometimes I tell myself it’s for economic reasons. I’ve seen my weight fluctuate so many times that I anticipate needing that size again (I know, I know, I doom myself before I ever even get where I want to be). Sigh. There are clothes hanging that I don’t even like, can’t wear (because they’re too something in either size direction) and some I have absolutely no intention of EVER wearing again.

Yet I keep them. They’re in there. Hanging. Well, some of them. The sad part is the shirts or pants I do wear more often tend to fall off their hangers onto the floor because of lack of room, but those horrid outfits I never ever want to see on me again persevere without ever touching the ground. Like stoic soldiers that refuse to leave their post. Strange.

I must, I must, I MUST sift through this salvage yard that is my clothes closet. And make the “donate” and “toss” piles like I’ve read and heard countless times. But this time, I MUST do it. I know that every time I conquer a pile-o-crap somewhere in my life, I always relish the quiet and sweet empty space later. It is clean, uncluttered and clear, and my head and heart do cartwheels. So I completely know just how delighted this action can make me, yet I don’t make the time to do it. Why??? Will I have to face the realization that some of these clothes represent an old me, a past that I won’t go back to (in some cases, don’t want to)? Is that why I’ve saved and even continue to wear (in the house only) my raggy, hole-covered floral nightmare that I’ve named my “death shirt” because it was the shirt I was wearing when I survived my last car accident after being hit and pushed forward, barrelling hoodfirst toward an electric pole, only to miss it by a few feet? Why DO  I keep the death shirt? It’s not like I can wear it anywhere.

I told you that therapy would probably be necessary.

It’s time to tackle you, Ms. Closet, my friend,  my keeper of these lost “treasures” and freakish mementos, oh honey, oh pal of mine. We are getting a stripping this month, and that is that.

LIFE –

Hmm.  This one’s the hardest of all. The others are fairly straight-forward – business systems in a shambles? Easy, gather papers and organize now before you’re even more overwhelmed. Closet out of space? No problem, edit and delete, and make room. But life — where to organize better? I’ve managed to come up with a calendar system that works pretty good for me,  a monthly and weekly “to do” technique that I’ve mastered, and even some little tricks along the way using my cell phone timer and other tools to keep me plugging along and monitoring my time, something necessary in my line of work as a freelancer.

So what can I do and where do I need help the most? I have been allocating myself – on paper – a ME day every month since February and haven’t taken one yet. That’s not to say that I don’t enjoy my share of fun lunches and outings along the way but even on those days when I do allow myself a little downtime it’s usually preceded by hours and hours of working to the wire prior to it, so by the time I get to the “downtime” activity, I’m too wired to appreciate it.  Already, my “me” day for April has been erased on the calendar and replaced with some recently assigned work projects.

Sigh. Do you get where I’m going with this?

As part of my “spring cleaning effort,” I’ve got to allow myself time – even just one day each month for just me – not doing things for my spouse or family or friends, and certanly not for my clients, and yet, I haven’t been able to allow myself to do this. Yet.

After I hit send on this blog, I am pulling out that calendar again and I am changing one of those days to a me day. Maybe I’ll go walk a few parks like the old days, maybe I’ll hit the beach at Honeymoon Island State Park again (lovely place) or finally make my way down to Safety Harbor Resort and Spa like I’ve been talking about for so long. (Or take the cheaper route and head to our community pool and down the street for a cheap manicure or something similar…) I just feel that if I add this into my routine to give those little hamsters in my head, a break from cycling, I’ll come back much stronger, more clear-headed and energized. And preventing the trashing of a good habit I’m trying to start each month is one form of “spring cleaning” of my schedule that’s sorely needed!

So… tell me about your own spring cleaning adventures. How can you get to the root of your cluttered mind, house or schedule?

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