30 Days to Happiness: O is for Organize

O I can’t count the times I have listed as a goal or affirmation that “I have a neat and well-organized house.” Beyond writing or saying the words, nothing ever happened to move me in that direction. . .until I met up with “40 Bags in 40 Days.”  I had been researching Lent for a post I was working on, when I discovered this blog which stated the writer was giving up clutter for Lent, one bag a day for 40 days. I knew this was my answer. “40 Bags” has been going on for years and has accumulated over 10,000 committed participants who blog about and facebook about their decluttering, “decrapifying,” organizing lives. It was fascinating to me, and  I joined forces with them on March 7. I set up my chart where I faithfully recorded what I had accomplished each day. First I went through my top right drawer and got rid of one bag of things I never wore. Success. You can follow my adventure on the chart below:

40 Bags in 40 Days!

 

Day

Date

Room

Outcome

Bags

1

3/5

2

3/6

3

3/7

Top Left Bedroom Drawer

3 things to give away, small bag of trash; drawer almost empty

1 small bag

4

3/8

Top Bathroom Drawer

Despicable mess; 3 hairbrushes, tweezers, etc. left

1 small bag

Sunday

3/9

Cookbooks

8 cookbooks left

1 small bag

5

3/10

Off (Worked a Double)

6

3/11

2  kitchen drawers

Lots of things not needed

1 small bag

7

3/12

freezer

Not much left there ice and 1 carton of chile, some flour tortillas

1 small bag

8

3/13

Started back rt corner of bedroom

Sorted papers

1 small bag

9

3/14

Bedroom rt corner

15 minutes +10 for put away

1 small bag

10

3/15

TV stand phase 1

 15 min. Cleaned out mess and straightened, now must make decisions on throw away

1 small bag

Sunday

3/16

Day Off

11

3/17

2 kitchen drawers

15 minutes or less Placed toy lizards & frogs as “surprises”

Few items to trash

12

3/18

Day Off for Movie Night

“Mr. Peabody and Sherman” with Larry and Jay- Bags will have to wait

0

13

3/19

Just couldn’t do it; too sleepy

0

14

3/20

Bottom of closet and Vitamins sorted

1 small bag

15

3/21

Larry did top of his closet and top of dresser

Exciting that he was inspired!

1

16

3/22

Out of Town

Emmerson’s birthday

Sunday

3/23

Off

17

3/24

Closet Shelf

6 minutes amazing results

0

18

3/25

Nothing today

Must regroup

19

3/26

Nothing today

20

3/27

Nothing today

21

3/28

Sorted old papers (tough job) about 1 ½ hours

Papers to shred and papers

½ bag

22

3/29

Sorted box of papers been there 2 years

Papers to shred and ½ bag

½ lg bag

Sunday

3/30

Off

It had been a challenge indeed to find time to work on this project. I started with what was the easiest task, and I started with enthusiasm of epic proportions. Even if it was after midnight, I found a small job to do, or spent 15 minutes toward a corner, but I did something every day for 13 out of the first 17 days. The challenge was to do this every day until April 19, the end of Lent. What happened next is epic “Sharon.” I don’t know how I found the A to Z Challenge, but when I saw it. . .oh I remember now, it was from someone in my beloved 500 Words a Day group from Tribe Writers who mentioned the A to Z Challenge. When I saw it, I ran to it with abandon and began on April 1 with the A to Z Challenge. And hence we are at O for organize. I am only behind schedule by one letter if you don’t count H for Hawaii which I am researching.

Yes, I dropped the organizational ball and picked up another challenge. There just hasn’t been enough time what with my  Joyce Meyer’s 3030 Challenge, in which every night I take 30 minutes,usually the last 30 minutes of my day, and I meditate, memorize a chosen portion of scripture. I have been faithful to my 3030 challenge since March 1, and I’m doing well with my A to Z Challenge, but 4040 has gone by the wayside temporarily.

Not My House
Not My House

As you can see, I embrace challenges yet  I seem to run from organization. I can find many things to do that do not involve organizing or decluttering my house. What I found through the “40 Bags” groups was a belief that it is possible; it is fun; it is rewarding to have a neat and well organized home. I also found some wonderful people that I relate to. I found people who are decluttering their lives by dealing with emotional baggage, and it is inspiring to walk with them on their  journey of healing.  I have also gained confidence because I have seen “before” pictures  that would make the leaves fall off a tree! (example:  above, not my house!) Seriously  I found that there are people far messier than I am. God love ’em! My confidence has soared. I have gained a belief and an excitement that it is possible for me to accomplish the gratifying task of organizing and decluttering every corner, crevice, and closet in my home. I will find a way, a group, or a challenge to do it just as soon as this crazy A to Z Challenge is over!

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30 Days to Happiness: N is for: 8 Reasons I Want Your Name

I like to play the game of collecting names, attaching some information about the person to the name, and then trying to remember the name. It’s part of my work, but it’s an exercise in using my mind, as well as an exercise in reaching out to others. Our names are important to us, and by sharing our names we put value on people. It is definitely a work in progress. I’ll let you know how it goes.

8 Reasons I Want Your Name

1. When I know your name, my mind creates a file to put all of the interesting information I learn about you.

2. When I know your name, I acknowledge that you are an individual, a special person to the Lord.

3. Knowing your name brings us a step closer to friendship.

4. If I know your name, I can use it, and that puts value on you.

5. Your name is important to you.

6. If I feel like praying for you, I have a name to use.

7. It’s fun to see if you look like your name.

8. It might give us something to talk about.

So friend, what is your name? Do you like your given name? Do you have a nickname? I am guessing many of you know what your name means, and that means something to you. Feel free to share. You can just call me “Princess.”

SharySignatureA to Z Badge

 

 

30 Days to Happiness: M is for Meet

Meet Everyone Everywhere Today

I don’t know about you, but that conjures up a ridiculous picture of me walking down the street sticking my hand out to everyone, saying “Hi, I’m Sharon. And you are?” Within minutes, someone would send the men in white coats to pick me up or  worse,  they might think I’m a politician vying for their votes. No kissing babies for me.

meetWhen the acronym presented itself to me, I  liked it as a reminder that  we actually do meet people everywhere every day. There are people everywhere. When I connect with the one in front of me, I meet them right where they are. I can look them in the eye, remember that they are a person with a life just as important as mine. Many people have troubled lives, sad lives, destructive lives. Others have peaceful lives, prosperous lives, interesting lives, but, no one has it all together.

When I take this word “meet” as a guide word, it leads me to reach out to people and recognize that they are a person just like me. My natural curiosity and sincere interest will cause me to ask questions so that I can see through the window into their life for a moment. This expands my understanding of God’s infinite creativity. It enriches my life. It gives me the opportunity to project a ray of sunshine through that window . Hopefully they will see God’s love for them reflected in me as I let them see a bit of myself as well. If I get a chance to actually stick out a hand and get their name, then a true connection has been made, and I can truthfully say, “It was nice meeting you!”

So meet everyone everywhere today by acknowledging them as God’s creation, getting to know them a little bit, and opening up so they can see who you are as well.

Even though it’s not face-to-face, we’re actually meeting here today. Because of my curiosity and sincere interest, would you answer one of these questions, and as always feel free to ask one of your own. 1) Where is your favorite place to vacation? 2. How many people live in your house? 3. What kind of work do you do? and if you dare, 4. What is a challenge you are facing? I would be happy to send up a prayer on your behalf.

 

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