saturday upsides: even chores have silver linings

Happy Saturday! I can’t believe how quickly this Thanksgiving weekend is flying by. We’re having a wonderful time visiting Mike’s family, and it’s been a nice mix of productive work time, relaxing lazy time, Christmas shopping time, family time, and of course eating yummy food time! I need to do a bit more grading before we head back to school on Monday … I tend to put grading at the bottom of my to-do list {maybe because I really dislike giving bad grades and sometimes I simply have to.} The great students more than make up for it, though. Which brings me to my topic for today’s Saturday Upside, linked up with Bonnie at Recipes Happen:

even chores have silver linings

We all have those chores we don’t like to do, those small tasks that we procrastinate on. For me it’s grading and cleaning the bathroom. Mike really dislikes doing laundry. Another friend of mine hates doing the dishes.

But the thing I’ve learned about procrastinating is that it just makes the dreaded chore bigger than it needs to be. It gives it power by letting it take up your brain space. The dread of what needs to be done later taints the present time, which is time spent doing other things you do enjoy. And then, when you finally do get around to completing whatever it was you were procrastinating on, don’t you often think, I guess that wasn’t so bad/didn’t take so long/wasn’t as difficult as I was expecting? It happens to me a lot. It would be so much better if I would just bite the bullet and complete the chore before the procrastination lethargy settles in!

Something that helps me is to try to find the silver lining even in life’s chores. Maybe that means putting on my favorite new CD or Pandora playlist and dancing while I clean the bathroom. Mike folds laundry while watching one of his favorite TV shows. Even washing the dishes could be time spent daydreaming about your dream vacation or mentally plotting out your Christmas list or listening to an intriguing podcast or audiobook. Hate to exercise? Call a friend and have a catch-up chat while you walk around the neighborhood. Or power-walk around the mall while you window-shop!

“Silver linings” can also be mini-rewards you give yourself. Like I said, I have lots of terrific students, and I often save the papers from my best students for the end of my grading stack, as a little reward for me at the end. {It always makes me so happy and proud to see my students trying their best and shining with their work!} Maybe you could break chores up with little treats: a good cup of coffee or tea, a chapter of the great book you’re reading, a square of dark chocolate, a game of fetch with your dog, a phone call to a friend. It also helps me to think about the end goal of whatever I’m doing: the students I hope I am helping become better writers, for example; or how important it is to keep the bathroom clean and wiped down to stay healthy, especially during the winter cold/flu season!

And sometimes it helps to get down to the basics: if I feel annoyed at having to clean my apartment, I’ll remind myself how lucky I am to have a place to call my own. On those days I don’t feel like getting up and going to work, I think instead about all the people who are trying so hard to find work, and how lucky I am to have a job to get up and go to!

What could be the silver linings in some of your least favorite chores or tasks?

4 thoughts on “saturday upsides: even chores have silver linings

  1. Pingback: Saturday Upsides: The Holiday Season | Recipes Happen

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