Yes, it’s supposed to be mindful Mondays but yesterday I was minding my mouth. So today will become a mindful Tuesday. With this whole How To Train a Wild Elephant exercise, everyday is becoming a mindful one. Can’t say that I’m mad about it.
Last week’s task was “Leave No Trace” and couldn’t have reminded me more of a lesson I heard over and over again in Girl Scouts, “leave every place better than you found it.” The lesson encouraged picking one space to leave no trace in for the week. When I read this out loud to my darling he quickly piped up, “I have a preference!” I knew what it would be and it was, the kitchen. I think I’ve mentioned the “Katie Trail” before. Anyone who has had the pleasure of living with me needs no explanation- for those of you who have not, this is trail of (destruction) hints about what I have been doing recently.
You can usually walk in the door to my place and quickly assess that I have been on the couch eating popcorn, reorganizing a bookshelf, going through business cards, changing purses, that I thought about reading a book but decided on another one, almost wore a particular pair of heel to work and then changed my mind. My mind is typically all over the place and I’m not in the habit of closing one chapter before moving onto the next. I’ve been aware of this problem for a while but it wasn’t until I moved into a one bedroom condo that I was really forced to do something about it. Spaces become even smaller than they appear when a “Katie Trail” is in place.
My big trouble is the time in the evening, right before bed. How tempting it is to leave a pan soaking in the sink or a workout bag for the next day only half-packed. If I could get into the habit of taking even 10 minutes before bed to do a quick clean and sort, our conditions would vastly improve.
The biggest boost to having a clean place has been my abstinence from television. Without television, I’m bored and finicky. So I’ve been aimlessly wandering about the condo cleaning. Two Sundays ago I cleaned out a junk box that had been with me since college, that means this junk box survived at least five moves. Not much has survived but the box was small enough, about the size of a shoebox, that it was easily hustled from place to place and the stuff inside of it seemed important enough.
The leave no trace activity is tough and I’m going to keep it going through this week. Last week was short because Thursday-Sunday I was away for wedding festivities.
This week’s task is to remove all “filler” words. This shouldn’t be too hard for me but I’m glad I didn’t have this task a few years ago. I know what to watch for. I’m in my company’s Toastmasters club and each meeting they count your filler words. Last week, after giving an evaluation, I only had one filler word! Also, the CEO said it was one of the best critiques he’d ever heard and wished that everyone gave critiques like that!!!! (I almost fell over.)
The trick is for me to not say, “you know.” This is public enemy number one this week. Typically it happens when I’m talking to someone and I’m uneasy about whether they are engaged or not. I often do this to my mom.
Do you often use filler words? What are some of your tricks to staying tidy?