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Do you have things that happen regularly in your home that are nothing more than time wasters?  Jessica talked about Enthusiasm for the Kids Talk on Sunday and she mentioned that we can be either

  • Energy Givers
  • Energy Takers
  • Energy Wasters

 

It is much the same with the activities we do, the things that we fill our day with.  Some tasks are energy givers – I feel refreshed, ready to go after a good chat to my mum or when we’ve had a quick house blitz and things are looking tidy, or I am prepared for the day.  Some tasks are energy takers and we have to discern if they are energy takers simply because we’ve done a hard thing (a right thing, but hard none the less) or is it an energy taker because it is the wrong thing, because we aren’t being productive, focused or specific about what we are doing.  Some tasks are simply energy wasters – we know that these need to be fixed.

 

Sometimes the change that is needed is internal – an attitude adjustment.  We don’t like a task so we delay, procrastinate, fiddle-faddle around.  Energy wasting, energy taking.  Sometimes though we do have control over the situations and we need to orchestrate change.  This is how I think of time wasters – they are situations, that zap my energy, but I can do something about them.

 

What are my time wasters?

 

  • Lost and misplaced items.  An ironic thing happened to me to just show how chronic this is in my house.  I set aside some time to get my filing system in order so I could know where my papers are and yet, I had lost my worksheets on setting up my filing system!  I had lost my notes on how to not loose things – a great start!  A place for everything and everything in its place is an adage as old as at least my grandmother (93) and probably her mother before her.  It is a truthful thing.
  • Bugs on the floor.  At this time of the year there are so many insects around and they are attracted to the evening lights.  The other morning I swept the floor 3 times before lunch, just so we could walk without crunching insects.  They came from everywhere.  Since then, every evening we have pulled the curtains to block out the light and now there are hardly any bugs visiting us.  How many times do I put up with a repetitious housework task when there is something I could do to eliminate or reduce the dirt in the first place? 
  • Incoming Emails.  The other day I switched on the offline function on my emails.  This means my emails download automatically, every 5 minutes or so.  Regardless of where I am in the house I hear a little “beep” – you’ve got mail!!  Though I may not rush back to the computer there is a distraction there for a moment, wonder who that could be?  Curiosity will eventually win out!  There are many aspects of the internet that causes distractions – energy wasters.
  • Piles and piles.  I like to see the tasks that I have to get to.  This means I keep piles around me.  But if I am really honest, they represent mental baggage, and they exhaust me.  I am slowly finding system that can keep the task at hand in front of me, and yet not be a pile.  Having times where I regularly go through any pile and deal with it is also helpful.  I have a pile of “give away” stuff – I need to make regular trips to the Salvation Army shop with this instead of letting it pile up.  Putting it in a container that I can load into the car will help here.
  • Eating the wrong food.  My energy levels are immediately affected by processed foods and starchy carbs.  Self control is needed! Eating and exercising, and drinking water, certainly are energy givers.

 

My To-do / Office Desk pile, sorted into files, but still sitting on my desk

Energy wasters change with the seasons of our life; we grow and mature, learn new skills and our energy wasters will be eliminated, and yet others pop up!  So what are your energy wasters and energy takers?  Is there anything you can do about them to turn them into energy givers?

 

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