What's your mantra or slogan?? Share your words of wisdom.

tre3April 9, 2007

Is there something you mutter under your breath to help you declutter, organize or keep you on track?

In a previous post I mentioned "Just because you can doesn't mean you should." This SOMETIMES keeps me from taking on additional projects and reminds me to delegate.

Looking for more words of wisdom. TIA

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western_pa_luann

I have two:

"Don't put it down; put it away"

and

"Clean as you go"

And both have been drummed into my kids' heads since they were young. It really eliminates the clutter, and makes cleaning easier!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 1:45PM
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stephanie_in_ga

I tell my kids (and sometimes I have to tell myself) "Don't put it down, put it away." And I tell them "Leave no evidence," but I really stole that from Talley Sue.

But the one I use most often, enough that friends quote me, is "Lower your standards, but not your values. And know the difference!" I really believe that living with that statement can keep my life more peaceful.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 2:55PM
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teacats

Ditto on: Clean As You Go -- this is simple and it really honestly works every single time!

Also: Complete The Task -- I tend to do too many at the same time -- and leave tasks uncompleted -- which causes a "speed bump" in the day

Also: Think Through The Whole Process -- this means thinking about the entire job (like "The Daily Mail") -- from start to finish and consider each step -- and how it can help OR hurt the whole process of getting it done! ((from my days writing about business and industrial stories .....))

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 3:06PM
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Lena M

"Why shouldn't you be surrounded, in your home, only by things you love?"
(from Kingston's Clear your Clutter with Feng Shui)

and for life in general:
"Everything is JUST FINE."

-Lena

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 4:08PM
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adellabedella_usa

"It's already paid the rent."

DH and I got this off a tv home improvement show a few years back. Someone was doing some landscaping and was removing some bushes because they no longer looked nice. Anyway, we say this whenever we have something that isn't functioning for us the way it did when we got it. It's our way of saying it needs to be tossed, donated, or remade into something usable.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 4:09PM
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jannie

Progress, not perfection. I got that from another website. I'd like to do a crosstitch of it as a reminder to myself.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 6:24PM
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tre3

My MIL has had this one posted on her fridge for years: THE MESS YOU NEVER MAKE IS THE MESS YOU'LL NEVER HAVE TO CLEAN UP". This is the one that reminds me to clean as I go.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 7:09PM
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claire_de_luna

DonÂt agonize. Organize.
By Florence R. Kennedy

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 9:39PM
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claire_de_luna

Organized people are just too lazy to look for things.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 9:53PM
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alisande

Ooooh, I like these!

The one-word mantra that has encouraged/pushed/forced me to dispose of stuff is RUTHLESS. I've muttered it under my breath countless times.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 10:22PM
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kim0201

Whenever my perfectionism was getting in the way of progress, my grandmother always told me what her mother told her "no one will ever notice it while riding by on a galloping horse" and sometimes she said Granny would add "in the dark" if something was really out of sort. My grandmother's over 90 years of age and if I'm fortunate enough to carry her genes for longevity, I'm sure those things that bothered me so much in my younger days may seem pretty insignificant at that point. Gosh, I love that woman!! :-)

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 11:02PM
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southernsurfergirl

My father told me:

"Always be quick, but never be in a hurry."

My dad and I are big into sports, so we know the importance of quickness, but being in a hurry is different. If I'm running late it usually means I lost my keys or my scene designs I needed for class. If I use my time wisely, I can gather my things earlier and not rush around.

Whenever I cook, I gather all my ingredients first, then cook. That way I won't be ten minutes into it and find out I needed something I don't have and run around panicking.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 2:37AM
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tre3

"FOCUS" helped me today in my two favorite types of stores; hardware and fabric.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 5:55PM
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Bumblebeez SC Zone 7

You can't take it with you.

And for my whole life:

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus."

    Bookmark   April 10, 2007 at 6:52PM
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celticmoon

"If you're born to hang, you'll never drown. So let the big cat jump."

(I find it oddly liberating and inspiring.)

    Bookmark   April 11, 2007 at 12:09AM
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talley_sue_nyc

"First, do no harm"

This one keeps me from even buying stuff to bring home.

And I also have been sayng, "Don't put it down, put it away."

And, "Put it AWAY away." (as in, put it in its REAL home, not just some place you can stash it in for now.)

    Bookmark   April 11, 2007 at 9:20AM
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steve_o

"Reduce, reuse, recycle."

As a bit of a counterpoint: "I did not want my tombstone to read, 'She kept a really clean house." (former Texas governor Ann Richards). It's a reminder that there are/should be higher priorities than housework. :-)

For the rest of life: "God, please help me understand that this problem has already been solved for me." I find it a healthy way to look at a world that often does not make sense of the moment.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2007 at 9:31AM
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Plow_In

The one I've been using the last couple of years is, of course, "plow in". I figured the house was such a mess that it didn't matter what I did - I should just do SOMETHING!
Pick a spot and begin.

Kim's Granny reminded me of what my grandmother and mother used to say: "Will it matter in a hundred years?" This has pulled me up short many times when I get in a panic about something really trivial. Now, of course, there are things which DO matter in our immediate life, but this has helped me pause and think.

    Bookmark   April 11, 2007 at 11:17PM
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drjinx

For decluttering:

"When in doubt, throw it OUT."

For many other things in life:

"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting to get different results."

Jean Marie

    Bookmark   April 12, 2007 at 12:24PM
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caroline94535

"Don't put it down; put it away."

"I can do anything for 15 minutes."

"It doesn't have to be perfect; it just has to be finished."

"This is the day which the LORD hath made; I will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalms 118:24 This one got me through USAF basic training like a breeze.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2007 at 2:06AM
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TommeCA

One of our guiding mantras is (slight variation of Steve O'S):

"Reuse, restore, recycle"

The other that I mutter to myself (whether shopping or cleaning) is "Do I need it or do I want it?" It keeps a lot of junk from finding its way into the house.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2007 at 4:40PM
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teacats

Forgot to add my sister's fav slogan:

"Rotate and Re-organize"

"Rotate" collectibles, artworks, photos etc. throughout your home to keep the whole house looking and feeling "fresh" to the eye. Never feel that you HAVE to put out everything. Choose some things -- and put the rest away. And discard (which means sell or donate) the rest.

Also consider changing things for the latest season -- or for a reason like a party. Move things to a fresh spot -- like switch out lamps, artworks from room-to-room. A fast way to a new look!

"Re-organize" is exactly what this forum means -- take a look at the available storage around your home (or office!) -- and decide which systems/storage work -- and where the problems (speed-bumps) lie! Solutions start with clearing and then move on to storage.

    Bookmark   April 15, 2007 at 12:26PM
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quiltglo

My 7 yo ds says, "When you are done with it, deal with it." Mine was posted on another thread. "I need a place to live my life, not store my life."

My Flylady favorite I really needed was "You can't organize clutter. You can only get rid of it." When I found myself repeatedly moving something around, I realized it was clutter.

My personal favorites:

Unless it's a heart attack, you can time your time and think it over.

Think for yourself. Speak for yourself. Act for yourself. Imitation is suicide.--Marva Collins, educator

Gloria

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 3:39AM
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jannie

A place for everything, and everything in its place. If I can't find a place for something, get rid of it. If it's good, donate it. If its bad,throw it away.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 9:02AM
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jannie

There are no rewards or punishments, only consequences.

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 10:18AM
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postum

Along with "a place for everything..." my mantra would be "every little bit helps."

    Bookmark   April 16, 2007 at 5:35PM
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lionors

"When in doubt, throw it out."

and

"The longest journey begins with a single step."

Both of these helped me when I cleaned out my father's house twice. First, two years after my mother died, and then after the pipes burst while he was away and all the ceilings came down.

Poor Dad. The first day I was there, he thought it was great and wanted me to call my husband and tell him I was going to stay longer. By the third day he was telling people that I was holding him hostage! Also, I got to the point where I would say, "Do you want to keep this? Too late!" and throw it out. They had five copies of their marriage certificate, so I don't think I was particularly ruthless in tossing three of them, but it was a lot for him to deal with.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2007 at 8:19AM
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talley_sue_nyc

Oh--another one:

"If not now, then when?"

That's a line from a Melanie song, I think.

I call it up when I'm tempted to stick something in the wrong place. I'll have to put it ALL the way away at SOME point, why not now?

Also, I'll make my bed eventually; why not first thing in the a.m.?

    Bookmark   April 17, 2007 at 9:20AM
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tre3

I've found myself using quite a few of these lately. Thank you. I think I may transfer them to an index card so they'll be readily handy to inspire and remind me.
Keep those sayings coming!

    Bookmark   April 17, 2007 at 4:10PM
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liz_h

tre3 - I reread this thread often, hoping more of these slogans will sink in to my subconscious. Some of my favorites have been mentioned, I'll just add another one - "Do it now." I tell myself that when I'm tempted to leave some little task undone until I "feel like dealing with it"

caroline - I remember a snappy song of that verse (This is the Day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it.) It got me through a lot of painful rehab after an auto accident. I sang it in my head while going through my paces. I was sorry when they started playing the radio as the music clashed with my internal song.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2007 at 4:53PM
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catkin

I love *plow in*. When faced with tasks that seem insurmountable--just start somewhere--anywhere! Thanks!

    Bookmark   May 12, 2007 at 1:44PM
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hibiscus53

These are . Lately one that has helped me is: Its only stuff.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2007 at 6:47PM
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artemiss

What great inspiration! Here are mine:

'Just do it!'

'Just buy what you need for now' (to keep myself from overbuying, having to store stuff and pretend I'm saving money by buying in bulk).

    Bookmark   May 12, 2007 at 11:04PM
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donnamp14

"Just because I like it doesn't mean I have to have it."

and

"Just becasue I have it, doesn't mean I have to keep it."

They both work for me.
-Donna

    Bookmark   May 14, 2007 at 12:48PM
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oofasis

I can't say that I use this as my mantra, but it sure is something I ASPIRE TO: As long as you have STUFF, you'll never have money. (Paraphrased from Suze Orman) I must admit, though, that it usually comes to me as an afterthought...

    Bookmark   May 15, 2007 at 9:30AM
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jaybird

When I'm working around the house, TalleySue is always there saying "TAKE IT TO....."what ever I'm doing, instead of going to get something to fix an item...take the item TO the fixing point!!, so thank you TalleySue!!!!!

    Bookmark   May 15, 2007 at 2:04PM
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housekeeping

I was raised on this one:

"If the field is hard to hoe, think only of the present row."

It is taken from a sampler embroidered by my GGG-Grandmother in Lancaster, PA., in 1846.

Molly~

    Bookmark   May 15, 2007 at 9:45PM
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Lena M

A new one for me:

[A yard is hard,]
an inch is a cinch.

-Lena

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 10:16AM
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brugloverZ9

I just went to bump this up...Looks like you did already Lena...that's for the tip to read this post!
Margie

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 12:29PM
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maryliz

If there is anything I envision as I clean and declutter it is:

"Tis a gift to be simple..."

In other words, the less stuff you have, the less you have to clean and put away. If you truly need something, then by all means, you should keep it, or get yourself one. But it is a very liberating feeling to realize how little you really need. That is the "gift" part.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 2:54PM
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rachelrachel

okay - don't laugh - but sometimes getting it done feels awful so I really encourage myself. My phrases during those times are:

"Good girl"
"You can do it"
"Keep going"

It does provide a boost when I'm tired and trying to put away the last of a project, or do the last bit of cleaning.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2008 at 2:57PM
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lexi7

This one gets me through everything. "I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength." Phil 4:13

Don't Pass It Up, Pick It Up

Begun is Half Done

    Bookmark   July 8, 2008 at 5:35PM
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brugloverZ9

I like the "Progress not Perfection" one too...have to remind myself when I am not feeling sure of where I am putting my newly organized stuff. At least if I have weaned it down I can always move it to a different location at a later time.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2008 at 5:42PM
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maryliz

Today, when I vacuumed the basement exercise area, I remembered the "90/10 Rule."

The biggest improvement (90%) only takes a little effort (10%).

If you insist on going after that last 10%, it would take 90% of the time & effort.

Best to spend that 90% in nine other places. I still remind myself that "It doesn't have to be perfect!"

    Bookmark   July 9, 2008 at 1:29PM
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donnawb

We can't take it with us. When we die someone has to go through it all.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2008 at 6:31PM
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terryinmd

It is easier to DO yourself into feeling better, then it is to FEEL yourself into doing better.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2008 at 7:32PM
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sheriz6

I love all these quotes, and while I don't really have one for cleaning or de-cluttering, this is my mantra when the going gets tough: "All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well." - Saint Julian of Norwich. It helps me slow down, think, and put things in perspective.

I really like Flylady's "You can do anything for 15 minutes," too.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2008 at 5:48AM
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bronwynsmom

I love St. Julian of Norwich...have heard this for years, and never knew its attribution. Thank you!

When I worry too much about perfection, I think of what my mother told me (in her soft, southern voice..):

"Dear, you wouldn't worry nearly so much about what people think of you if you could know how seldom they do."

    Bookmark   July 10, 2008 at 9:45AM
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Ideefixe

Use it up, wear it out, then at last, throw it out.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2008 at 5:47PM
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Lena M

I'm bumping this favorite thread of mine.

Is anyone else in cleaning mode?

-Lena

    Bookmark   May 8, 2009 at 11:54AM
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gayle0000

Suck it up and get it over with.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2009 at 6:28PM
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lilydilly

"Just swallow the frog". For anything unpleasant I don't want to do, but need to, from dentist appointments to cleaning drains.
"80% is perfect too" My DIL made this one up for us to overcome our perfectionism, and we use it all the time with each other.
"Stuff is just that... stuff."

    Bookmark   May 12, 2009 at 10:47PM
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chrisdoc

You can only buy something if you have a place to put it.

If you are buying new pants or a shirt, which old one are you getting rid of? Same w/ shoes, books (I could start a whole thread on books), picture frames, toys and on and on and ...

    Bookmark   May 13, 2009 at 8:35AM
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minnie_tx

"Get thee behind me satan" or Reality Check do I really need it?

    Bookmark   May 28, 2009 at 11:06AM
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kksmommy

"If you can have two babies, you can do this."

    Bookmark   June 5, 2009 at 11:58PM
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jak1

I spend about an hour every morning doing my "regular" clean up - dishes, beds, laundry, maybe sweeping and dusting, and then each day I do one "JulieJob" = one thing that would not be part of a daily regular routine. It might be cleaning ceiling fans, or sorting out the sock drawer, cleaning out the bathroom vanity, whatever. Just one extra thing each day. Done. One JulieJob.

    Bookmark   June 7, 2009 at 8:05PM
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brutuses

I have to ditto on the,

Just because I want it, doesn't mean I have to have it.

Saves me lots of money, that one!!

    Bookmark   June 12, 2009 at 10:40PM
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justgotabme

Bumbeez I love your "Do not be anxious...." Very wise.

I'd have to say that my montra is the similar to Steve O's with one addition. Reduce-Reuse-Recycle-Repurpose.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2009 at 2:56PM
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lazypup

If you haven't used it in the last 12 months you don't need to keep it.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2009 at 2:18AM
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backyardsiren

'Where is it?'

Enough times having to say it and I become motivated to get my stuff together.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2009 at 12:24PM
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talley_sue_nyc

Here's another one, courtesy of bleusblue:

My motto is "Notice Stagnation"

The idea being, stuff that's in your house that isn't actually in use; it's easy to stop seeing it after a while.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2014 at 12:55PM
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emma

When times are hard...."this to shall pass"

I have a couple of others, but they are gone for the moment. LOL

    Bookmark   May 6, 2014 at 2:29PM
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mercy_leigh

Good to see this thread back at the top. I think someone already mentioned one of mine, eat the frog. It is accredited to Mark Twain who supposedly said that if one starts the day by eating a frog, the day can only get better. As a kid, that meant eating the food I disliked first before consuming the rest of the meal. As an adult, it is a reminder to get the difficult or unpleasant task over with first and the rest won't seem so difficult. Dreading a task is often more stressful than doing the task, anyway.

Mind over matter is another favourite. As in, I'd rather have peace of mind than more matter to clean and store.

Less a motto than a directive, take care of your tools so they can take care of you. As a gardener, cleaning tools means the difference between buying new every year or not. It means a wet/dry vaccuum that does not smell like musty cat fur because it is cleaned out after every use. It means knowing where that one drill bit is because it was put back in the case after its last use. Mister thought I was crazy the first couple of times he saw me clean our brooms but he quickly caught on to the idea when he got tired of constantly buying new paint brushes because he would not bother to clean them immediately after use.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2014 at 9:38PM
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ncutt

My mantra used to be"Clutter free in 2003"....now it's "Clutter free when I am 63"

    Bookmark   May 11, 2014 at 10:34PM
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LucyStar1

âÂÂDonâÂÂt let perfect be the enemy of good.âÂÂ

    Bookmark   June 2, 2014 at 2:38AM
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cleanfreak29

âÂÂFor every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned.â Ben Franklin

As soon as I get home from work, I look at the clock and spend 15 minutes cleaning. 15 minutes ONLY, and then STOP wherever I may be, so I can unwind and enjoy the rest of the evening.

We need to remember to keep balance in our lives! You can do so much in just a few minutes. :)

    Bookmark   June 28, 2014 at 11:08AM
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LucyStar1

When decluttering, Fly Lady says to sing the Englebert Humperdink song, "Please release me, let me go" sung from the point of view of whatever you are getting rid of.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 9:51PM
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alameda/zone 8

"In order to seek one's own direction, one must simplify the mechanics of ordinary, everyday life."...........Plato

This one "came" to me when I was laid up with knee surgery and unable to take care of my horse farm, my yard or my home. I was totally frustrated and miserably unhappy. I knew I had to find a way out of this so I could rest and let my knee heal. The thought appeared to me that I should "Concentrate on what I CAN do instead of what I CANNOT do." This helped me spend time on navigating to the kitchen to eat, to the bathroom, then lying down to read and nap. I didn't worry about the things I couldn't do - just did what I could. It was all still there when I was able to walk again [thanks to my boyfriend, barn help and good friends]. I refer to this saying when things to do start overwhelming me - I just do what I can do at that time and forget the rest.
Judith

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 8:37PM
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cupofkindness

Here is another amazing Flylady quote:

"Your attitude has to change from 'Why do I have to do this?' to 'This is my home and I deserve to have a wonderful place to live. This blesses my home and my family and most of all, me!' Do you feel the difference that these two statements make in your heart?"

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 9:16AM
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