Friday, April 21, 2017

Eating an Elephant


"How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time." That's the saying and the advice I've received from countless folks on tackling the various overwhelming projects on my plate. At work, this is pretty straight forward for me, as I have extensive project plans, back dating the tasks from the deadline to start, ensuring all pieces are accomplished. I do great with deadlines. My office however has become quite cluttered. Too many piles of papers, unfilled documents, and just general untidiness. There is no deadline, so therefor I don't have a project plan. I am determined to take a couple bites from that particular elephant at the end of the day, giving my self my last hour in the office to focus on order. 

At home, next weekend is going to be set aside for DD1's former bedroom, my office. If I can get the furniture out and move what isn't staying, DH and I can pull-up the mangie carpet and tacking, and do a deep clean underneath of the floor before we put a new remnant down. I'd like to say we can find the remnant, and have it all ready to go down on Sunday, but don't want to over promise myself. It will be a few more bites at the house elephant, though realistically with our May schedule, we'll still be chewing until June. Did I really say June? 

I  need to put my work Sam hat on and treat my house the same way. DD2 is in school until June 8th. I'll use that as my project deadline. If I get farther ahead, I can give it a wrap early, but here is my grid. It is a work in progress, but you get the idea. This is a play on a tool I use regularly at work and don't know why I haven't applied it at home. I'm going to create additional grids for other areas, ones that do not need DH involvement such as our bedroom (I'm not moving out heavy furniture or pulling carpet-yet). If you have ideas or suggestions, please share. I hope I'm on the right track with my elephant house. 

Task
Resources Needed
Target Date
Completion Date
Notes
Clear Office –Store Furniture not going back




Purge Closet-old DD1’s items for donation or throw




Pull Carpet and tacking




Prep floors for new Carpet




Repair and paint walls




Lay new carpet




Put furniture back




Organize office for function

June 5


Office Complete

June 8






12 comments:

  1. Without a deadline I just procrastinate. I was supposed to be painting a hallway yesterday, I've put it off to the next rainy day.

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    1. I'm a horrible procrastinater and need formality. We have tons of painting on our to do list.

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  2. I mentally say the "One bite at a time" line every time I tackle something that seems larger than I think I am capable of doing. It really does help

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    1. Yes, slow and steady, one but at a time. Hoping I can nudge myself better the coming weeks.

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  3. Oh. I like this idea! I love the idea of giving a deadline and then working back. Like you said it works well at work, so why not try it at home. I have done something similar this year with my monthly decluttering projects but I like how you have yours laid out with specifics.

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    Replies
    1. I know I need that discipline. It works for event planning so should work but I'm worried my brain will override because it knows it's an arbitrary deadline.

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  4. I love this idea! It's a great way to transition to accomplish home projects. =)

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    Replies
    1. I need to give it a good effort.

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  5. That's the way I work at work too - meeting date X - work back 10 months and in between get the reports done, translated, meetings set up and bingo. But as others have said I'm no good without a deadline and to be honest, I have them at work but home seems to be just one long Forth Bridge (they say that painting the Forth Bridge takes so long that when you get to one side you have to go back and start again). But, give me a deadline or a short time frame and I work up to it. I have had about 200 of my ex husband's CDs sitting in a box in my living room for 2 years till I can sort them and get the boys to take what the want. My youngest said he was coming over tonight "in 45 minutes" so I got that box out, checked there was a CD in everyone, pitched the empty ones then picked out the ones I wanted. When son came over I told him he had 10 minutes to go through the other pile. Bingo it was done. The rest I will donate or pitch. And after that, we all went out for dinner. Successful evening all round. I must try that technique more often. Anna

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    Replies
    1. Someone told me also to break things up in 15 minute chunks. I think that aligns with your short strategy.

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  6. good for you!
    It sounds quite sensible.

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    Replies
    1. Sounds sensible, yes. Implementing will still be a challenge.

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