There are of course some of the many irresponsible distractions skulking about, too. I just went on a 5 - 10 minute facebook diversion, followed by a 5 minute music decisioning bit (I actually call that more of a neutral player as I think we can all agree that now and then life is no good without the appropriate soundtrack). There is of course blogging this post, too, but it's a necessary sacrifice of inertia as I haven't been blogging much of anything lately. It might even focus me some.
One tricky thing, though, is despite this rare urge to confront things like mounds of paperwork & filing, tidying & cleaning, workouts & self grooming, and such, it's kind of a listless sort of urge at this point. Almost a restlessness--a responsible restlessness, but still. I should, methinks, make a lil' to-do list.
To curtail committing a hyperbole and a half ("clean all the things!"), it should be relatively short but realistic. 3 to 5ish achievable things, something so I can feel a sense of doability (that's half formula for motivation, afterall) but also one of achievement. Otherwise I'll either never do it because it's too over-comprehensive or I'll over-exert this thing-doing urge without adequate reward and avoid it in the future.
Mhm, mhm. I'll get to that after I finish this post. What's nice, though, is I feel like I've been feeling this kind of "let's do things I need to be doing" and with it actually kinda wanting to--specifically, less out of guilt than it just feeling right. Like the other day--before I left work I made a short to-do list of things I wanted to get accomplished that evening; I promised myself I'd accomplish at least 3 of the 5 things, and I did. I did my laundry and I stripped & remade my bed and polished my work shoes and made a couple of calls--all terribly, awfully, unimaginably overdue.
And you know something? It felt good. It felt normal. It felt like what I could imagine you guys feel with your evidently more manageable lives (or simply better managed) and you're taking care of things like chores and errands. That subtle bit of satisfaction and relief--"Well, that takes care of that!". And, most importantly, it was laughably effortless and easy compared with the time and energy I'd wasted unconsciously avoiding these things and consoling the shame of not taking care of them. It turns out it's not so impossible. My life may not have to be so self-pitiably haphazard anymore.
So today there are lots of things I could do. I will pick as many as 5, as few as 3. If I finish all of them, awesome, maybe I can do some extras or maybe I'll just rest up for tonight's overnight floorset at American Eagle. The only potentially tricksy part is some of these things aren't as simple, familiarly processed as laundry; it may have several steps and some moving parts, but I don't even need to break it all out in my brain--sort, wash, dry, fold, put away--to know how do it.
Some of today's things are a bit more frayed and complicated--like sorting and filing all my papers into my filing cabinet. I don't know if anyone else sees how, for a scatterbrained, not-occasionally sentimental, secretly OCD nutter like me, that could get complicated/overwhelming, and fast. It's not something I'm exactly used to--I don't know if I have some comfort zone, some max-per-hour capacity I can handle, or some process that can be broken down and simplified as needed. Like, with laundry, if there's a lot and I can't commit too much time, I'll just do the whites or just do essentials like underwear and socks. This could become so easy to overcomplicate for a guy like me, so easy to make "impossible". I mean, I'm sure I'll be able to figure out this filing thing, but it still gives my limbic system a twinge or few of worry--and, here, I haven't even started. It's not that these things are ever actually themselves that hard as it is far too easy for my funny little brain to make them hard.
Thankfully there are other things I can also take care of today. I could start off with doing my taxes or making some phone calls to get me started. And frankly, if I really need to, I can break down the "harder" stuff into ludicrously simple steps. Get folders. Find marker. Choose major categories. Locate papers. Try out some sorting. Heck, it may even help to set goals--something like "file papers from desk by the end of the week"--then simply work on one or two of those steps along the way to them at a time each day. If nothing else, I can console myself that I can put this responsibility urge to good use by taking care of any of these bits, even individually.
And, knowing me, once I get going, I'll probably end up blasting through the whole lot of them in no time at all; all I need to bypass my idiot mind are those very reassurances--that I can stop at any point, that I am moving in some happy direction, that there are roughly intrinsic limits in each step, that doing anything is better than doing nothing. That's how laundry and bed remaking are; that's how most obstacles in my life seem to work out, probably since they're usually of my own making. Each time, I begin so fearful, unsure, and somehow I end up with everything taken care of--just by starting.
And, with that, I think I'll get started on something(s).