Staying Motivated: Keeping up with Expectations of Yourself
We have all had those days… the ones where you look at the clock at 3p and wonder how in the world it got so late and you have absolutely NOTHING accomplished. I’m having those days more than usual since I’m
stuck staying at my dad’s caring for him after he broke his hip. (By the way, I still have no idea how long I am going to be here. We don’t even go back to the doctor for a checkup until Thursday.)
Most of my guilt (yes, guilt) of not accomplishing much isn’t even true. I’m doing as much as I can considering this isn’t MY house, and any projects that I do have in the works I have no means to accomplish. I have a lot of sewing projects I wanted to work on, but alas, my sewing machine and desk and supplies are just entirely too much work to transport the 30 miles from my house.
So I’ve been doing what I can. I’ve cleaned the entire house, I emptied out and sorted a lot of stuff he’s had sitting around since before my sister and I moved out 22 years ago. I called and got him to finally update the leaky shower after bugging him for over 10 years… probably more, because I think we bugged him when we actually bought the house when I was 13!!
Here’s the 3 key things I’ve realized being in an uncomfortable and unaccomplished situation.
Appreciate what you HAVE done.
When you sit and look at the clock, take a step back and focus on what you actually have done today. I did this just a little while ago. I realized that I already have been my dad’s waitress, maid, nurse, etc. I’ve given him breakfast, his pills, all his liquids (orange juice, coffee, water and iced tea), and I have washed, dried and put away all of the dishes. When you stop and think about it, I actually have accomplished a lot.
Realize that you are doing things, just not what you WANT to be doing.
I have to remind myself a few times a day on this one. I am doing all of this for him, and I spend a lot of time trying not to be resentful of the fact that I can not do what I want to do.
Make a to-do list of what you CAN do, not what you WANT to do.
A lot of the feeling of being “lazy” or “unaccomplished” is because you set yourself up to fail because of what you expect yourself to get done in a day. I don’t care how energetic you are, you are only one person, and you can only do so much in the period of a day. No matter what, there is only so much that you can get done, and life will always throw you a few curve balls on what you have to do and when. I didn’t expect that the process of cleaning for Dad would entail a lot of running to town to get supplies and take in trash. I do what time allows me to do, and I accept that I did the best I could.
Life is never going to go according to your plan. You can dictate out your day down to the exact minute, but there is always going to be a wrench thrown into the works when you least expect it. Learning to roll with the punches and tolerate the disappointment of not getting everything done is key to not getting frustrated and just giving up. Each and every little thing that you do is leading to a greater purpose.
Do you have some tricks on how to overcome the horrible feeling of not getting everything done that you planned to? I’d love to hear how you deal with those days!!