unfuck your habitat changed my life

i have been incommunicado mostly because the colder weather is making my pain/mobility issues flare up. there are often times when i am literally in too much pain to sit in front of my computer & type anything. sometimes the only thing that helps is laying flat on the floor with my legs elevated on a footstool or the bed. i wonder how long it will be before i’m wandering around town with a walker or recovering from a double hip replacement. i’m not even employing hyperbole here.

i have also just been less interested in spending time on the internet. but when i am on the internet, i am obsessed with this tumblr. i know! i never thought i would actually sincerely like a tumblr either! & of course sometimes there is annoying shit on here, mostly from college students who write in to say, “i have four papers to write & my dorm room looks like the city dump, but i am too lazy to do anything but lay on the couch working on ‘glee’ fan fiction. halp?” luckily, the blog maintainer’s response to everything is, “just do it. NOW. stop being lazy!”

this tumblr (which i found after a friend linked it on facebook) is not the first time i have ever heard of 20/10s (where you work on something for twenty minutes & reward yourself with ten minutes of dicking around, lather, rinse, repeat until you’re done). they pop up all the time in articles, books, & magazines about how to get shit done (tedious shit, like housework or other tasks a person may be inclined to avoid). but it was not until i found this tumblr that i decided to actually give the 20/10 method a spin & see if it did anything for me.

i wasn’t expecting much because i am already a pretty tidy, organized person. i keep color-coded daily, weekly, monthly, & yearly to-do lists, okay? i have a spring & a fall cleaning routine. i write down every penny i spend & what i spent it on, & then i make spreadsheets detailing my expenses so as to better fine-tune my budget. i have actually lived the monopoly dream of catching bank errors in my favor because i so obsessively balance my checkbook down to the penny & compare my records against my statements.

but i was delighted to find that 20/10s actually boosted my productivity & simultaneously lowered my anxiety levels! this method is fucking amazing. in the first week that i started employing it, i cleaned out my entire bedroom closet, including a bunch of random unpacked boxes jared had asked me to store in there from the last time we moved. (we are seriously like “the odd couple”. jared has an organizational system that works for him, but it says a lot that it is called “the random teetering piles of crap on every surface” system. our living room is bisected by french doors. i consider the westerly half mine & the easterly half jared’s. my half generally appears ready to be shot for a home decor magazine, save for the end table next to the couch, which is piled with jared’s crap. there are no words to describe jared’s half. it’s like a history archive & a bike shop collided & exploded in there. but he says that he knows where everything is, which is all that really counts.) i unpacked the boxes, threw out what needed to be thrown out, put away what needed to be put away, re-organized the bibs & bobs that remained in order to store sheets with sheets, curtain with curtains, pieces of halloween costumes with pieces of halloween costumes, etc. everything that could be put into long-term storage was put into long-term storage.

i cleaned out my dresser as well, ruthlessly casting aside items of clothing that don’t fit, don’t get worn, or are beyond repair. items in good condition that didn’t fit or that i now consider ugly went into bags for donation to a thrift shop. everything else was tossed. that left me with two completely empty dresser drawers, into which went special occasion shoes & art supplies.

i cleaned out my dresser too, throwing out tons of paper recycling, organizing my pile of unanswered mail, corralling bits & pieces of electronic equipment (i didn’t even know i had a memory stick! weird!), & consolidating more frequently used art supplies. i was left with two empty desk drawers, & i loaded my considerable collection of old journals & half-used notebooks into them. which opened up an entire small bookcase, so i unpacked the crates that had contained DVDs & zines. the bottom shelf was piled with library books that has been stacked on my desk.

& the vast majority of this was accomplished in twenty-minute bursts, followed by ten minutes of doing something mindless, like looking up otherkin-themed tumblrs & laughing at them. (apparently there’s a dude who thinks he’s a rocketship? WTF?)

maybe reading play-by-plays of how someone cleaned their house is not that exciting to the average person, but i love it! the new year is right around the corner (i’m sure i have mentioned before that new year’s day is my favorite holiday, just because i love fresh starts) & this feels like the perfect time to clean, tidy, organize, & start 2012 out properly. i am hoping to really be on the ball in 2012. but those resolutions are for another post. in the meantime, please enjoy this adorable photo of christmas kittens posing in the window of doodlebugs, the baby/maternity consignment shop in downtown lawrence:

Published by Ciara

Ciara Xyerra wrote zines for the better part of two decades. She has a brilliant & adorable preschooler named Ramona & sews as much as she possibly can. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas with her boyfriend. She enjoys catching up on "The New Yorker", meatball subs, keeping it cranky, intersectional post-third wave feminism, dinosaurs, & monsters. If you have nothing nice to say, she recommends that you come sit here by her, so you can say not-nice things together.

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