Friday, July 8, 2011

Be More Efficient

We have a busy life, everyone we know has a busy life, and so I try and do things the most efficient way I can. While having this busy life we also want family time and relaxing time, all that, basically having our cake and eating it too. We also do a lot of things to impress others or make ourselves seem like them so we are not different and fit in, but life is hard enough as it is without all that.

How can we do it all? We need balance in our life or we burn out, we still need to do the work that needs to done but we also need to take regular breaks, and we don’t need to do it all. Having breaks doesn’t mean the going away on a world trip type of break (though that would be nice) but having enough time every day that is down time, where you get to breath, otherwise, heart attack here you come.

So how do we do it all and get to rest? Well, I am going to give you my theory on it, I was thinking on it at 4am this morning when I woke up and couldn’t go back to sleep.

We need to make our lives more efficient and less complicated in all areas of our life and we need to decide what is important and what isn’t, what is worth worrying about and what isn’t. If you do things the easy way or differently to others it doesn’t make you lazy, it is just doing it the best and most efficient way for you and for your life, live your life the way you want, not the way others think you should.

Here is my list of some of what I do.

• Plant a low maintenance garden including the edible bit
• Plant the garden in one area and not all over the place (hard to water)
• Put in irrigation and have hoses everywhere so it all reaches
• Put more than one thing into the oven at once
• Cook large batches of meals and freeze the rest for tired nights
• It is OK to have toast for dinner every now and again
• Don’t buy clothes that require ironing
• Buy only good shoes and only have a few, same goes for clothes, really, how many clothes can you wear at once, easy for decision making
• Don’t vacuum everyday
• If things are a little messy that is OK
• Spend 15 min per room cleaning and tidying no more
• Delegate, don’t hog all the jobs for yourself
• Lower your standards a little, not the hygiene bit, but get your kids to hang the washing out and when they do it differently to you (and weirdly) don’t worry, it is hung out and that is all that matters
• If the dishes are done and the beds are made all is well, actually I am going to scrap the beds bit, now my partner in crime and life is on night shift the bed doesn’t get made as there is always someone sleeping in it, so I’ll just run with the dishes. Nothing worse than not having enough teaspoons for your cuppa teas, so as long as you don’t have four days worth of dishes piled up your good.
• It is OK to have stuff, it is what makes your house a home, as long as you love it and you aren’t falling over it, there is no problem, ignore other people. Being a minimalist is fine if that is what you choose and having different stuff and hobbies to other people is fine too.
• If you go out and everything is not away it is OK, do it when you come home, it is not the end of the world.

Just remember, when you are 100years old, what are you going to regret? Not doing the dishes before you went out that time, or sweeping the floor before visitors arrived? Or will you regret going on that picnic, going to that museum exhibition and painting that scene that moved you? Everything doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be you, you don’t have to please others only yourself, so sometimes just let it all go and do it tomorrow, and I bet you won’t regret it later.

We can have it all, often a lot of us have help to have it all (childcare, pay someone to clean the house once a week) and those who don’t run themselves ragged trying to keep up with it all and burn out, so we need to do things more efficiently. So, as Gunnie in Heartbreak Ridge said “well, you have your boots on, you’re good to go” or something along those lines,sometimes that is all you need and don’t worry about the rest, at least not today :D


  1. So true, and another important thing is to enjoy your kids when they are little - they grow up so fast. In my younger days I used to have a plaque on the wall which read "there will be years for cleaning and cooking, because children grow up while you're not looking" Sometimes in our quest for perfection we forget to live!

  2. You are so right AfricanAussie :)