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Fabulous Family Friday–Just 15 Minutes a Day!

Do you ever get overwhelmed?!


I’m sure everyone has felt overwhelmed with a project more than once in their lifetime!  Maybe even overwhelmed at more than one project at the same time!  Plus just living “normal” life (whatever that is! ;) )


My tendency when I need to do a big project, is to either think I can block of a big chunk of time and get it done, or to think I can do just a little bit over a looonnnnggggg time and it might get done…only to have to start it over again because the first part of it got undone since I was taking so long!


I will confess it right here–I am a messie.   A reforming messie,  a not-nearly-as-bad-as-it-used-to-be messie, but a messie nontheless!


I am not task-oriented.  I like to cross things off my list just like everyone else does, but I very often don’t have a realistic idea of what can really get done with the time and energy available.   That has certainly  gotten better over the years, but between adrenals that are challenged, running my home for just the daily things, even with the girls’ help –it takes a lot of emotional energy!  Add to that the craziness of studying to be a trainer (and that with God’s leading and my husband’s full blessing), you can imagine that things get “out of hand” from time to time!


Over the years I have come to realize, as Donna Otto stated, that most packrats don’t really like a lot of stuff –they just have a hard time making decisions.  Boy, can I relate to that!


Again, this is something that has gotten better over the years, but it’s also something I still have struggles with!  Knowing what I do about the adrenals, I realize part of that problem is truly physical.  Part of it is emotional –having a hard time letting go (memories associated with the “stuff”!).


It may be that something just doesn’t have a good “home” yet.  Or to make a place for it, it’s a domino effect of:


~Wanting to make my one computer desks’ “cubbyholes” my “office”, using the shelves for my mail and paperwork.


~To do that, I need to clean aforementioned shelves off.


~To do that, I need to file things.


~To do that, I need to clean out the file drawer.


~To do that…..well, you get the picture! ;)


So I’m overwhelmed, and usually doing well just to keep up with the dailies. Kind of like budgeting for bigger items, you try to save a little each week….but you can’t ever seem to get ahead to do that!


I had a revelation the other day!


I have lost 9 sizes basically by doing 15-20 minutes a day, 4-5 times a week over the past 4 1/2 years.


It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when you are a size 22W, and you feel like you will never lose enough to really make a difference.  Especially in just 15 minutes a day!


But then I found that it did work–I just needed to stay consistent!


My thought a week or so ago, was why not do the same with these overwhelming projects in my life?


No, 15  minutes a day isn’t going to make a huge dent in that desk….yet over time it will make a difference!  Let’s just hope it doesn’t take 4 1/2 years!


I’ve tried doing something similar before, but my focus was on how BIG the project was and how l-o-n-g this was going to take, and I lost heart almost before I started.  Along comes real life, with its myriad interruptions, and I would give up.   Again.


But now, having accomplished something big over 4 1/2 years’ time, investing an average of 15 minutes a day, 4 times a week, I can see how it can work in other areas!


So my goals?


Two big areas  that need decluttered are my room and the computer desks (yes, we have two, side by side!).   There are more areas, but those are my priorities right now.    This week had some craziness (as usual!) so I didn’t get to work on those areas daily, but that is the goal I’m working towards–at least 4 days a week.    I did get to work on one desk and it’s amazing what can be done in 15 minutes at a time!


I am also reading through Large Family Logistics, and Kim Brenneman suggests something similar in her book. That plus doing a 10 minutes on task, 10 minutes break or do something you enjoy, then back to 10 minutes on task, etc.  An hour or two of that could make a big dent!  I’m hoping to get to the point of doing that on  Saturdays (when canning is not consuming us!).


I am applying this 15 minute idea to many areas of my life, not just decluttering!


Such as:


~Practicing my flute –no 15 minutes isn’t a lot…but it’s more than the 0 minutes I’m doing right now!


~Sewing–again, no, I won’t finish anything quickly doing this, but it’s better than nothing!


~Studying T-Tapp–I am working on one or two moves a day, so reading up on that/those moves in Fit and Fabulous in Fifteen Minutes, and…


~Doing those 1-2 moves a day (meaning talking them as if I’m teaching them!)


~Working on some writing projects (blog included!)



As I said, I’m not going to finish overnight–but just like losing inches, its effect is cumulative!


I love how God weaves my life together, as Ann Voskamp says, it’s a  One Piece Life. It isn’t compartmentalized into sacred and secular –and so T-Tapp sparks some spiritual applications, and also my quiet times sometimes yield insights into T-Tapp for me!


In this case, the progress I’ve made, putting my best efforts in just a little bit each day, has encouraged me to do the same in other areas of my life.


And just as being on the forums, especially Habit Formers, has helped me with accountability in my workouts, so I am going to be accountable to you here on my blog each Friday, reporting in what got done that week!


Of course, we all know life happens!  It does in T-Tapp, too!  But, my goal is to spend at least 15 minutes 4-5 days per week,  decluttering those two areas and study my T-Tapp 15 minutes daily.   Then I can add more into my day as those habits are established.


Do you have a big project?   Something staring you in the face and overwhelming you?    What could you commit to do for 15 minutes a day, 4-5 times a week?


I’d love to hear from you!  Leave a comment and we can pray for each other!


Next week I’ll tell you how I plan to transition into starting our school year! ;)



6 Responses to “Fabulous Family Friday–Just 15 Minutes a Day!”

  1. WendyD says:

    Trisch – I’m cheering you on! It was the fly lady who taught me that you can do anything in 15 min. So true. Now instead of cleaning the whole house – my goals are so much smaller, clean off the counter top. Whew, that I can do! Hugs!

    • Trisch says:

      I hear you, Wendy! It’s so easy to think of a WHOLE room or a WHOLE closet and feel defeated before you even start!

      But yeah–one shelf, one counter, one drawer–that I can do! ;)


  2. Diane says:

    Such a good post! My big project is just getting enough sleep. I struggle too much with insomnia. Which makes the day to day stuff overwhelming. Perhaps I can take 15 minute naps throughout the day? LOL.

  3. Janin says:

    Could I ask a question about clothes and children?

    I notice that your girls (and young adult women) wear lovely, modest clothing and headcovers. Your boys wear more conventional, modern clothes, even shorts.

    May I ask why that is?

    BTW, I enjoy your blog!

    • Trisch says:

      Thank you, Janin!

      Yes, I am happy to answer your question!

      Our decision for the dresses and headcoverings came of our own study and conviction–it isn’t the result of the church we go to or what we grew up in. The main goal is modesty, femininity, and loveliness for the girls. The boys also need to have some modesty, of course. For example, they do not go without shirts on, and the shorts aren’t to be too short (ideally–sometimes they find some too-small-for-them clothes!)

      My husband doesn’t wear shorts, except in our own pool, and we haven’t really discussed/made a decision whether at a certain point the boys will no longer wear shorts other than that as well. As with many of our convictions, we grow into them as God touches our hearts about things.

      We are kind of an enigma to many people because we look Mennonite but we aren’t, and we have all kinds of friends from all kinds of walks and denominations! While we have our own convictions and feel quite strongly about them, we do not mandate that everyone needs to be like us. Our Abba Father has each of us on a journey, and He knows best what we each need on that journey.

      I hope that answered your question, and I’m happy to clarify if it doesn’t quite make sense! ;)

      Blessings to you!


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