Lately I must admit that I have had my cranky boots on. I've been wandering around my house cranky at the mess, cranky because I don't have enough time to do all the things I want to on my website, cranky because the kids ignore me and I have to repeat myself over and over, or threaten to take privilages away if they dont do what I ask, and cranky because where I live gets cold in summer when I am so used to constant warm weather.
Even though I have half heartedly tried to talk myself out of this crankiness, it was the words of my darling husband that turned me around.
He said, quite simply the other day when I was whingeing, "But that's reality babe. That's how it is. There will always be mess to clean up. There will always be housework to do and 10 loads of washing a week to wash, dry and put away. The kids will always be doing one thing or another that will be frustrating, so why get so upset about it. This is reality".
It's funny how I could've said those exact words to myself, but sometimes it just doesn't have the affect that it does when it comes from someone else's mouth. It really made me wake up and realise that he was right.
There will always be something that I have to do that perhaps I don't really want to, so I have the choice to either walk around being constantly cranky, or I can just accept it and go about it in the best way I can.
After Steve made this very logical comment, I started to observe just how often I was wandering about the house doing my thing with a permanent scowl on my face. I even laughed at myself at one point and said "Look at me grizzling away in my head getting annoyed by all this mess and all the things I've got to do. What's the point? I have to do it anyway, so why not do it with a smile on my face."
Another strange thing that happens when you start to put your attention on the solutions and changing your approach to things, is the answers that start to appear around you.
My mum came to visit last weekend, and she said to me (in her most non-offensive way), "I'm not picking on your house, but if you live with clutter around you all the time, you become cluttered in your head."
I didn't take offense to that, as I know that she was coming from a helpful place, and as I looked around my small three bedroom house, I really started to see how cluttered it really was. Now I spend a lot of time in my house, so this clutter probably is largely contributing to my frustrations.
After my mum said that, I spoke to Steve about all the plans I had for my website and how I was pressed for time and he suggested that his parents take the kids for a few days in January to help me get on top of everything.
Feeling armed with a plan to declutter my house and time manage my work schedule a bit better, I felt empowered.
On Saturday I cleaned the back deck, caught up on the 10 loads of washing, plus folded and put them away and cleaned out the kids toy room/spare room. I came out with 4 garbage bags of give aways and 4.5 garbage bags of rubbish - from one room!
On Sunday I relaxed a bit, but went on a big tidying spree later on so that I could wake up to a clean and tidy start to my week today.
This morning the boys had had their breakfast, got dressed, had their shoes on and their teeth brushed and ready, half an hour before we had to leave!
Over the last few weeks I have been reminded that sometimes we just need to start looking at the solutions to our problems, rather than getting stuck in them and that when we start to come out of our stressful thoughts that are in conflict with reality and we start to look around, there are loads of ways that we can change what is causing the problem.
I now have a plan for how I'm going to de-clutter the rest of the house, still work on my website, keep the house tidy and hang out with the kids and hubby. I can do this because I have stopped looking at what's going wrong and what I'm not getting and have started to do something about it.
I wanted to share this story with you for two reasons:
1. Because I wanted to show you that even though I teach self help to mums, I still need to be reminded to get my head out of those frustrated unproductive thoughts that are in conflict with reality and shift my thoughts to aligning with reality and thinking about how I can change the situation.
2. Because, knowing that I need reminding of this, I wanted to be the one to remind you of these important steps so that you start to become aware of your unproductive thoughts to and change them to start searching for the solution too.
Time Management is often a big issue for mums. That's why in The Happy Mum Handbook I help you to create a schedule that will include everything that you want in it - all housework, quality time with the kids, quality time for yourself and with your husband, work and anything else you consider important.
Have a great day and I hope your mind starts to feels as uncluttered as mine right now!