I often blame my chaotic home, scatter-brainedness, lack of ability to organize paper clutter, etc. etc. etc. on my creativity.
I’m probably flattering myself, but I’ve decided to be okay with that delusion.
I love getting in the creative “zone.” Ideas start flying and everything else disappears as my focus zeroes in on whatever project I’m working on.
Of course, the problem is that the “everything else” that disappears includes any focus whatsoever on things like . . . the house, cooking supper, or whatever else can wait in the name of jumping on this moment of creativity.
The other aspect of being creative is that I love the “moment of inspiration.” I’ve told people before that I have to wait for this moment to come. That it can’t be forced.
I really believed it when I said it, and I still generally think that way.
But I’m wrong. I know I’m wrong because these moments come, and I make something of them, when I have a real/true/not-just-rolling-around-in-my-head goal, and a plan for achieving that goal.
I think about how I’d love to decorate some certain area, but I rarely have a true moment of inspiration until I know that I’m hosting a party in a week. I love to take pictures of my kids, but I rarely dress them in complementary outfits and take them out into nature for a photo-shoot until it’s time to give Grandma a gift or make a calendar for all the relatives.
I love to write, but I generally don’t write a script until I have an actual project that needs a script. Of course, that’s one of the reasons I love blogging. I’m “forced” to write everyday which keeps the creative juices flowing.
So what’s the point?
I used to depend on inspiration to do housework. And since the inspiration didn’t happen much until I either had people coming over, or suddenly looked up to see that the house was a wreck, it really wasn’t a good housekeeping plan.
For example, this morning brought us back into the routine. The boys had a half-day last Thursday and were off of school on Friday. I’ve had two weeks of two different shows going on. The house has fallen down, down, and further down on my priority list. And so, as of last night, it was officially in the “total disaster” state.
This is nothing new to me. I’ve been here many times. And the main problem in the past has been that I depended on inspiration. The house would be in such a terrible state overall that I wouldn’t know where to start. And in my frustration, one foot sticking to the kitchen floor would inspire me to mop. And of course, this would mean finding the mop, a bucket, clearing all the random stuff off of the floor, etc. And I would often lose focus in the middle of all of it, and by the end of the day my kitchen floor might or might not be mopped, but either way, the house wouldn’t look much different from the way it was when the day started.
Today, I wasn’t feeling inspired. I didn’t wake up with some kind of special energy to get the house cleaned up. In fact I got up four minutes before I needed to get the kids up.
But I didn’t fret about the lack of inspiration. I just started doing what I knew I was supposed to do. What was on the plan.
I emptied the dishwasher. Even though I only had four minutes, I got started anyway. And by the time I needed to go wake up the boys, I was almost done.
Then I started gathering up laundry. It’s Monday after all. Still no inspiration, but I kept chugging. I sorted. I started a load.
After taking the boys to school, I did my Bible Study, and then worked on the kitchen. Yes, my foot stuck to the floor a bit here and there, but today is laundry day. I’ll mop on Thursday if the inspiration doesn’t strike before then. Because Thursday is Mopping Day.
And then I started with the picking up. Shoes have a spot, so I took them there. Mail and newspapers had piled up on the dining room table, so I sorted them. Easter baskets were emptied and put away. Easter grass (horrible stuff) was thrown away. Candy was consolidated and put in the candy spot.
Floors need to be vacuumed and bathrooms need to be cleaned. But I didn’t stress about it because their day will come later in the week. I just did what was on the plan for today.
So, even though I have very little energy today and am definitely not feeling inspired, my house looks pretty decent. At first glance, you probably wouldn’t know I’ve been neglecting it for a week.
It’s so nice to have a plan, so the house looks nicer and feels more comfortable.
And when it looks nicer and feels better . . . it’s inspiring.