Washing. Ironing. Cleaning. Bill paying. Chauffeuring. Office admin. Picking the lint off your favourite jacket, because someone other than you did that load of washing (well actually I don’t mind that one, in an inane, turn-off-my-brain-while-I-watch-TV kinda way).
Jobs you love to hate (there’s a hint right there).
If you can’t get out of them, what can you do?
I think I have the answer (well an answer). And of course it has to do with balance – between what you hate and what you love. Between what you think you hate and what you think you love (and I really don’t like the word hate).
It’s all about the matching process. Match up chores with treats. Link less than exciting tasks with things that make your heart sing. Pair pain with pleasure.
Call it a reward system if you like (and let’s face it that’s pretty much what it is), but it’s a bit deeper than that.
You can’t just earn yourself a diamond ring by doing a load of washing (just imagine the bling if that were the case).
And you can’t go and buy yourself something every time you complete a chore – not even applying the pocket money going rate of 50c or $1 per job.
But you can divvy up your day (or week) in such a way that you ‘eat the frogs’ that you don’t want to, but still have to; tackle the mundane daily grind; and match the drudgery with moments of peace, simple pleasures, joyful experiences and just a little bit of conspicuous consumption.
Remembering that balance isn’t equal (so 8 hours in the office isn’t going to be matched by 8 hours of R&R), but you can still find the balance if you know where to look.
I’ve previously suggested turning your TO DO list into a TO BE list and matching ‘good with the bad’ is another idea I reckon works when it comes to getting things done AND finding more enjoyment in the doing and in life.
Here’s how my ‘balance list’ might look.
- 3 x loads of washing ><= 1 x yoga class (I like to do a lot of yoga)
- 1 x writing work report ><= 3 x writing blog posts
- Picking up toys/clothes/miscellaneous off the floor ><= a cup of coffee in peace
- Paying 3 x bills online ><= reading 2 x blog posts by favourite bloggers
- 2 hours overtime at work ><= 1 x new pair of shoes (but not a pair of Manola Blahniks)
- 1 x cooking healthy, tasty meal ><= 2 squares of quality dark chocolate
- 1 x watching kids movie for the 10th time ><= watching an SBS documentary you just can’t miss
- 40 mins chauffeuring child to/from dance ><= listening to 4 x your (as opposed to kid’s) favourite songs in the car
- This weekend spring cleaning ><= a night out at a ball with a prince (because sometimes a girl has to dream)
So you get the idea – 8 minutes of frustration in a queue is offset by 2 minutes to stop and listen to the birds. Not equal, but same, same.
Of course you can just decide to hate less and love more. And in thinking of your reward (offset/trade-off/bling) you may even forget about that thing you hate so much that you just get it done. And then you can smile and wonder what all the fuss was about. And then you can just smile.
Smile. And do the laundry, because it’s always there to be done.
Linking up With Some Grace for FYBF. And liking up for weekend rewind with Sonia (Life Love and Hiccups), Bron (Maxabella and her lovely new Heartfelt Living site), Kelly (A life less frantic) and Sonia (Sonia Styling).
What would your matching list look like?