. Organized For A Monster

It snowed recently.  It was a big, silent “monster” storm that left some eight inches of snow and was quietly gone before light.  We woke up to a good three hours of shoveling work and when we got outside, we didn’t know quite where to begin.

Isn’t that how it is with all our challenges, especially the big monsters?  Where do you begin, how do you proceed?  What kind of stamina will be needed to finish?  When do you rest, regroup, and then start again?

Today I learned several principles about organization.

1)  Have a “short” plan. We decided to start at the corner of the garage and make  “snow shovel wide” pathways to the front door, down the driveway, around to the garage can, and over to the mailbox.  Then if our energy or time gave out, we could at least minimally function.

2)  Have a “medium” plan. When we got the pathways dug out, we decided to clear part of the driveway so we could get the vehicles on the street for errands, meetings, and work.  This focused our energies on clearing a “vehicle wide” pathway so my husband could be off and gone.

3)  Take a break (very important when shoveling snow and especially important when tackling anything too big to easily comprehend).  We admired our work and spoke of new, more glorious tactics:  the sidewalk and front porch completely cleared, the pathway to the garbage can wide enough to get it to the street, and a new, smaller path down our front sidewalks to our property lines.

4)  Go back to work. Yes, the muscles were tender and sore, the problem still seemed overwhelming, but work we must if we were to make progress.  This is usually the hardest part for me.  But when I put my head down and begin to sing, I’m going to be all right.  Push, lift, swing, and down again with the shovel.

5)  Have a “long” plan. In our case, we took a second break, got some breakfast, and then returned with renewed energy and a lighter attitude because “the necessities” were done.  The job wasn’t yet quite complete to our satisfaction, but surprisingly, the warmth of the sidewalk was melting some remaining snow wherever we had shoveled and so we were being helped on our way.

6)  Keep at it until you are done, done, done. It is always easier to do it right the first time when to try and return to chisel off the permafrost.  So we finished (at least good enough to get our company here, get the mail, put out our garbage can, and run errands).  It will be enough until the next snowstorm!

Good luck this week and remember:  “short” plan, take a break, “medium” plan, take another break, “long” plan, AND keep at it until you are done (or at least at a good stopping point).  May the snowstorms in your life not get you down, keep you there, or stop you from making pathways to success!

Find more helpful ideas in my House of Order Handbook.

Photo from sxc.hu. Used with permission.


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