Column 42 – I Don’t Have Time by The FlyLady, Marla Cilley

When you hear yourself utter these words, “I don’t have time!” either in your head or out loud to your family I want you to stop in your tracks. This is just another form of whining. Yes you heard me right.

We all have 24 hours in a day. In our perfectionism there will never be enough hours to do what we need to do, because the job will never be finished. Now in our defense we were taught by well meaning people who were taught by another generation of well-meaning people that if you can’t do it right then don’t do it at all! So why shouldn’t we procrastinate; in our minds we don’t have enough time to do it right so why even start!

I am determined to put an end to this stinkin’ thinkin’ once and for all! Our perfectionism will not allow us to do just a little. We have to hyper-focus till the job is done! Well I don’t know about you but in my home there are things that don’t ever get finished: Dishes, laundry and hot spots. It is a continual battle but here is the difference. I don’t look at it as a battle, it is a blessing. Yes you got that right. Dirty dishes are a blessing, because when they are put away I am blessing my family. Laundry is the same way. I am no longer chained to a chore but I have been given a chance to show my sweet darling that I care for him. After all, nothing says I love you, like clean underwear.

So when we have a change in our attitude from feeling martyred to finding joy in blessing our family, we will have time to do just a little. In the south we call that “hit a lick at a snake”. This is why we love our timer so much. We can accomplish more than we think if we will just set our timer for 15 minutes and jump in. So maybe you don’t think you have 15 minutes; well quit whining and do 5 minutes.

I just realized something about myself. I am more apt to do something for Robert than I am for myself. Just this morning as he was going down to get the newspaper he asked if I wanted him to build me a cup of coffee. (we have one of those one cup machines) I told him that would be lovely and as soon as my cup finished I got right up and fixed him one before he got back from the mailbox (we have a long driveway). So we blessed each other with a simple cup of coffee. We could have made them for ourselves but what fun is that.

Perfectionism is a nasty habit that we have to remove to make room for peace. I hate the word perfect. It steals our joy and causes us to hyper-focus and procrastinate. When we eliminate this word and the action or inaction that comes from its pressure we will be a happier people!

Perfectionism has so many layers just like our clutter! I still catch myself falling under its spell, but I am getting good at not being victimized by it for very long. Now I have learned to laugh at it and keep right on FLYing!

I have three rules that I live by.

Don’t sweat the small stuff; what doesn’t matter, just doesn’t matter.

To laugh every day; even if it is at myself.

And to love like there is no tomorrow!

Are you ready to FLY with me? Let go of that perfectionism that has been holding you down and soar higher than you ever dreamed!

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