Before Flylady, housekeeping was a pendulum of extremes. I often thought I was lazy (because I never got anything done) or incompetent (because I made so many mistakes when I did attempt anything).
It took Flywashing to understand – the extremes are neither laziness nor incompetence. Perfection/Procrastination is ALWAYS fear, not laziness. The greater the fear, the more I think instead of act. Crisis is ALWAYS stress, not incompetence. The greater the stress, the more I act instead of think.
I am afraid of the failure and frustration of finding myself less than perfect, so I procrastinate starting anything. Because I procrastinate, it is only crisis that can push me to action. By the time crisis arrives, I am so stressed and overwhelmed that there is no time for stopping to weigh a decision. My actions are rushed and without thought. In crisis, I make reckless mistakes. When the crisis ends, I use the mistakes to justify why I really do need to spend a lot of time thinking before acting.
Perfection Plus Procrastination Equals Crisis. This cycle wasn’t just in housekeeping. It was my approach to my whole life. I either study the map all day but never get in the car, or drive off a cliff because I am going too fast and miss the danger sign.
FlyLady has reversed my thinking. I know it’s not about laziness or incompetence.
If it’s perfection/procrastination, it’s fear. I have to stop thinking. I can take a babystep. Babysteps are never about the finish line, making it easy to start. I can use the timer. 15 minutes of anything propels me forward.
If it’s crisis, it’s stress. I have to stop acting and think. Relax. I can make a plan.
Staring at the map or speeding off the edge of the cliff…neither approach reaches any destination. I am Flying, when I understand what is really happening, when I know what to do.