Well I have been taking the “Do Nothingism” chapter for a test drive over the last little while. Needless to say I have been impressed. Dr. Burns talks about not laying in bed staring at the ceiling falling into your inner hell. I’m guessing that he really has talked to some depressed individuals because he hits the nail on the head.
Like many of you I have a full-time job + school + 1 year old + two dogs + home and extended family who like to see us. Some days I get home from work and I think about everything that I have to do and I would rather just mentally escape either in a good book or by watching TV. Lately I have been attempting to complete a little something everyday when I get home or throughout the night to have that sense of accomplishment.
I set myself up a little office for school work in our kitchen as it is near the family room so I can remain part of my wife’s and son’s life. This has allowed me to work on my school work while they do their thing in the other room. I can watch and participate as I like. I can also escape back to the kitchen when the baby is being fed or changed. (Not changing diapers is a nice side bonus)
I have also attempted to complete small tasks such as cleaning the kitchen and vacuuming the house. These are little things that don’t take a long time but tend to get put off until they have to happen. The upside to doing these small items is that the house looks better which makes me feel better. When I listed everything that I have done in the last week alone I am amazed at how much I actually completed.
The extra help around the house is appreciated by my wife as it allows us to spend more time with the baby instead of cleaning. I also found that overall I feel great because I am actually accomplishing items that make a difference. I use to write myself long lists to complete at home but I would get upset when I didn’t get them completed.
We have a tendency to look at what we haven’t completed as opposed to what we have. Now with no expectations I focus on what I have completed and it feels great. The bigger bonus is that when we take a night to sit down and do nothing on purpose, just to celebrate family time or reconnect with my wife I don’t worry about what has to be done as I know a little bit is getting done at a time. I guess it is true that even the small things can add up to a big difference.