Sunday, March 8, 2015

How to Get Things Done - My Personal Response to Stress

Yesterday I received the following email:


I am sure you are busy working a sweat in your workshop. IF you get a chance this weekend, can you blog about advice on getting things done in life? Especially getting things done despite every muscle in your body and every thought telling you to stay in bed otherwise.

Your new blog fan

Well first let me say, thank you so much for reading my blog!  Oh and thank you so much for being you!  I don't know if you know just how great of a person you are. (For all of you who are wondering the author of this email is my amazingly awesome intern that I mentioned in this post. Oh and yes I will HAVE to write at some point about how exactly she has become a reader of my blog!)

Okay, so to your question:

This is honestly a very tough question that I have come to understand really has no easy answers and I highly doubt that I will be able to give even a good answer within one blog post.  Thus I have been pondering making this topic be one of some regularity here.  Hmm.....?????? Maybe????????

So maybe today's post should be about stress.  What is it that gets me up and out of bed and kicks me in my booty to get things done?  Stress.  

Take this morning for example.  I have a ginormous list of things to get done.  Well actually I have three lists of things.  One is for work, the second is for the house, and the third is for myself.  So that I don't drive myself bonkers attempting to remember all of this stuff, and in the process inevitably forgetting most of it and then feeling worse, whenever I am feeling super overwhelmed I write these lists out.  If I already have the lists written, which I do most of the time, then I will review the lists and edit them if necessary.  Point being, I try to be aware as possible of everything I am expecting myself to accomplish.

So then back to this morning, I woke up and could tell from the amount of light in my room what time it was.  And then I felt stressed because with the time change I knew that I was already behind.  Part of me really wanted to just stay in bed and not think about it all, but I knew what that would do, just allow more time to pass and to make me feel more stressed out because then I would feel even further behind.  So.... I closed my eyes, took a deep breath, and got out of bed.

I started off my day the way I do almost every day, I went and walked my dog.  This gives me a great start to the day.  Getting out, exercising, observing the world around me, and watching my dog run in the fields next to the road helps to center me to what is important in life.  And I also had some time to contemplate what on my list is stressing me out the most.

I know that each and every day I cannot possibly accomplish everything that is on my lists, I need to make sure that I prioritize and accomplish the things that are causing me the most stress.  For me, I understand that things that cause the most stress are the things that I really care about getting done.  If I can prioritize my day and get the most stressful things done, then tonight I will be able to sit on the couch, veg-out for a bit and actually feel relaxed.

For me, I know that the most relaxing thing is trying to make my lists as small as possible.  And those lists will only get smaller by me getting up and getting shit done.

Okay, so what really motivates me and gets me out of bed?  Stress.  And the truly relaxing feeling of getting shit done.  

Oh and I suppose one last thought would be, deal with your stress by getting things done, but also be aware of balance.  I tend to work hard for a bit, say an hour or so and then take a small break and do something fun and mindless, like pinning nice outfits on Pintrest.  Today I am working my little butt off around the house and on work stuff, but yesterday I was not hard at work in my shop, it was a fun day of dressing up, getting out of the house, going to Bakersfield, getting my nails done, and enjoying the world.

Face your stress, get shit done, but make sure to allow yourself to have fun and do some things that make your happy.

That's it for today.  I hope I have been able to help in some small way.

It's never easy, but the journey is worth the effort.

We are always worth our own effort,

Love you all!


  1. They do say that idle hands are the devil's play things. I have been working hard since I was a kid. I always had an after school job and then worked my way through HS< College and grad school. Even in my professional life I often worked very long weeks with lots of weekend work.
    Around the house I like to get things done. I am not particular as to what I do from shoveling snow to cutting veggies, to whatever. Since I have a job that does not often show signes of mission accomplished I like to look at a driveway or walk cleared of snow or a pile of cut up food simply to reinforce that the job was done.

    1. Thanks Pat. I just love the feeling of getting things done and hate the feeling of having tons of things to get done! It is funny, I think, because I think the very thing that motivates me is what stops others. Human responses are so fascinating to me.