I recently experienced a revelation. To some of you this will sound more “No duh!” than “Oh, wow!” but I share with confidence that someone out there can relate. Here’s the revelation: chores I tackle the moment I notice them are easier than chores I avoid for a while before addressing them. Your mind is blown, right?
Although this may seem obvious, it took a while to click for me. I fell prey to a shortsighted logic that told me, “This mess is not that bad; you can deal with it later.” That seems to make sense.
But here’s another way of saying the same thing: “You should deal with this mess only when it grows to a size and severity you can’t ignore.” That’s nonsense.
I was using the fact that any given mess was small and manageable as an excuse to put off dealing with it. What I could have done instead—what I am working on doing on a daily basis now that I realized procrastination has caused me undue stress—is to recognize that small, manageable messes are far less stressful to eliminate than long-ignored, overwhelming messes.
But I still don’t like doing dishes. What’s your dreaded chore? How do you motivate yourself to complete it?