Friday, November 5, 2010

Change One Thing 2.0

Yesterday I changed something about the house that has the effect of changing my comfort level. It's a good start but the whole 'change one thing' idea is more about changing me, my outlook and my physical health. Perhaps not entirely, as changing things in my environment can also serve to help improve life in general for the family as well as me. What's most important is making changes, a little at a time, that have a positive effect.

Rules. Hmmm... not sure it's a good idea to set actual rules. Silly as it sounds, that's an almost instant guarantee that I'll pressure myself right out of doing anything after only a few days.

Guidelines. Yeah, guidelines could work.

As for the house, changing one thing can be anything from doing an avoided large chore I can do on my own to simply rearranging a shelf. It doesn't have to be every single day just yet as it's important not to take on more than I can physically handle and end up stressing myself into overdoing it. For now, I'll limit household changes to anything I can do in less than half and hour. This does not count the day to day responsibilities of being mom/wife/grandma.

The personal changes seem small to me right now and I'm determined to stop judging myself so harshly. If it's small, it's small. We all know how quickly small stuff adds up so I'm setting, well, I guess it is a rule that I can't ever tell myself a change isn't enough. If it's made, then darn it, it's enough.

I could list all the things that immediately jump to mind as far as needing change but again... I'm trying to do this without overwhelming myself and shooting myself in the foot at the start... so no list.

What I will do is explain each change. In all those DID recovery years, the why of things was pretty darned important. It gave clarity and helped fix the point of whatever was being dealt with at the time.

So, today I'm stepping out of my comfort zone and spending 15 minutes sitting downstairs in the living room. That time will be spent reading, knitting or talking with the kids. It will not involve reminding kids about chores, homework, behavior or any other 'orders'. It will not involve me doing any household-y work of any kind. I won't distract myself from the discomfort of hanging out in a room that's not my bedroom. I'll do this each day until it stops being something I have to consciously decide to do. When that happens, I can extend the time and use it for more productive purposes. For now, it's about getting out of my room for no other reason than to do it.

Oh, and to keep myself accountable, I plan to chronicle the effort. Even if I don't post more than a sentence, I'll post something daily. I need this outlet, this medium and I'll never get back to it if I keep telling myself there's no point unless I have something 'important' to say. pbfft. That's got to be one of my lamest excuses for avoiding something yet.

So there it is. Today I'll greet the kids as they come in from school instead of expecting them to come upstairs and say hi.

And it is enough.

*EDIT*
Managed the 15 minutes... but they weren't all at once. Rachel unexpectedly brought over a friend (STRANGERS!) and Krys brought over boxes of baby clothes to sort. Still, I did manage to just hang out. Took an hour and a half to accumulate 15 minutes but it happened. Overall, an hour and a half downstairs and my head didn't explode and I didn't totally panic. I'd say that's a good start.