Monday, April 4, 2011

Chaos and Control

I am not one of those people who thrives in chaos. I don't like living on the edge, I don't like being over-scheduled, I am not someone who has to be doing something all the time. I know this about myself, and do a pretty good job of not letting the craziness of life overwhelm me. Except in certain circumstances...little things, really, but eventually even the little stuff piles up and gets me down. That was the case this weekend - and really, it had been building all week.

Here's just a few examples:

1. Several days ago, I was trying to find some "before" and "after" weight-loss pictures - a couple of opportunities came up that needed them. Now, obviously I have them, as they are posted throughout this blog. But my digital picture files are kind of a mess - I pretty much upload everything by date. Which started out fine, until I ended up with about three years' worth of pictures. And somehow I ended up with folders inside of other folders - it was frustrating every time I tried to find something, but I never took the time to straighten it all out...I would just dig through the mess, find what I needed, and deal with it later. Only later never seemed to come.

2. I'm pretty organized with my paperwork - I may not file stuff that often, but it's in a pile on top of my filing box, so at least I know where things are. Until I can't find something. This week I had that "one thing leads to another" issue - somehow our wireless router failed to recognize my computer, so I had to enter the 26-digit code...which, apparently, I did not transfer to my 2011 desk calendar, where I keep all of those crazy passwords and account numbers that you need to know in a pinch. Fine - I went to dig out my 2010 calendar - I save them, as they are like mini journals of our life. I found my stack of them, all except for, you guessed it, 2010. Where the heck did I put it? WHY didn't I put it with all of the other ones? Where is my brain??? Argh. I frustrate myself.

3. I have several sets of plastic drawers in my closet - each set has three drawers, and I've used them over the years for everything from storing rubber stamps to office supplies. Very handy. I even had neatly labeled them with my label-maker. However, I've changed up what's in them over the last few years without updating the labels, which apparently in my head signaled "just cram stuff in whichever drawer is the emptiest." Which would explain why I had envelopes in three different drawers - again, it was frustrating, but I never took the time to deal with straightening out the mess.

What does this all have to do with a diet-and-exercise-based blog? Plenty, actually. Because for me, when little things like these - really, not huge problems, just more like irritants in the grand scheme of things - when I find myself not dealing with these irritants, it's a sign that I'm also not doing great on other areas of my life. And those areas - diet and exercise - are things that I can't let go uncontrolled. If I don't plan for my meals, I end up eating cereal for dinner. Once in a while, that's fine. More than that - hmmm. Where are my vegetables? Why am I not feeding my body the healthy foods that make me feel good, and good about myself? And without a workout plan, I don't do so's not that I deliberately don't work out - it's just that I forget. Which would explain the workouts I did last week at night, while watching TV - I really didn't intend to wait until 7:30 pm to work out...I just forgot that I wanted to get some ab work and weight sets in.

So. I spent some time yesterday and actually got my picture files not only organized, but sorted really well. It should be simple to keep up with this now. I also worked on re-labeling and sorting out the drawer sets in my closet. I'm not quite done, but I have a good start and am motivated to finish the project in the next day or two. Which, hopefully, is when I'll find my 2010 calendar...what the heck did I do with it, anyway?

I did pretty good on the food front last week, and I'm going to build on that success with a fridge stocked with fresh fruit that I've already cut up, veggies prepped and ready for a couple of big salads, chicken grilled and ready for those salads, eggs hard-boiled and ready for lunches or snacks. And, thanks to my running club, I have a workout schedule in hand for the next three weeks. I will consult, follow and obey the schedule, and enjoy every minute of it! No more chaos for me - calm and controlled is my mantra for the week. :)


  1. SO SO SO true here as well.

    for me it's the clutter/craziness connection.
    when my office is filled with playdough and barbies and papers are strewn about----chances are my workouts are slacking and my water drinking has plummeted as well.


  2. I think I could have written the same post (though, you are more entertaining about it). When I am organized, I eat better and exercise more. I wish I could be less Type A but I don't think it's in my genes.

  3. Oh brother. I am not quite as organized as you , but I do have my system. And when things go missing--aaaargh. Drives me crazy.

    Right now its buttons. I had so many nice buttons. And I just cannot find them.

    Oh, and the gigantic amount of pictures that need to be deleted. I'm working on that one though.

  4. Yeah I don't have an office anymore so our teeny tiny kitchen has boxes of misc papers. all over the place. sigh I feel ya.

    I hope you have a good week!

  5. We are much alike in the things you mentioned.

    One thing I just can't bring myself to do is cut and prep food in the weekend for the week to come. I might just start trying that, it will save me time during the week.

    My boss, who's a runner too, told me last week he was so impressed I sticked to my running schedule as he never uses one (he don't like that). I told him that if I didn't use a schedule I skip workouts easily. I like to know what I have to do in the workout department in the week to come. I even try to arrange my appointments around it.

    Have a great organized week my friend.

  6. Sounds like you fixed things just the way you like them. It's true, when I don't handle the little things well, something major is wrong with me. It become a raging nut and my weight goes up.

    I am going to take your lead and do some organizing today! I am guessing the run went complaints of the ankle. Guess I will wait till Workout Wed.

  7. Right on, Shelley. Planning and organization is half the battle!

  8. At the dojo they tell us "plan your work, work your plan." It's true with photos and files and most definitely the way to go with food and exercise. Usually if I've slacked off it's because I'm feeling weary. Funny how I KNOW slacking off won't get me anywhere I want to be and yet...

    Glad to hear you took advantage of your time and whipped yourself into shape!

  9. I am a super type a control freak (hey, at least I can admit it?!) and I go crazy when I can't find something or I got lazy and disorganized something hahaha.

  10. Oh grrrr that the journal you needed was missing. But sounds like you got yourself organized again!! I try to be organized too, but sometimes...something falls off the rails. (like the little tube of Krazy glue I've been looking for since yesterday. WHY is it not where it should be and where did my brain stash it??? sigh) Have a great day!!!

  11. Chuck and I were just talking about this over the weekend! Chaos makes me feel chaotic in the head. Orderliness= peace

    Glad you got a schedule from the running club and the eats in order. Here's to organization and peace! :)

  12. I had to laugh when I read this sentence:

    "just cram stuff in whichever drawer is the emptiest."

    My daughter hates when I do that - and has reprimanded me more than once that I need to be more organized like her!

    Love your plan - you can do it! Hope you had a great weekend. :D

  13. I do better when my life is organized too! Its the little things in life.

  14. I think I definitely have a stress/chaos tipping point. Too much planning and organizing and I feel constricted, but too much chaos and I can't get anything done because there's just too much to do.

  15. Calm and controlled. I'm so BORROWING that.

    Winks & Smiles,

  16. Such a great reminder. I think the chaos that is my life definitely affects my healthy lifestyle. I'm hoping that as the kids get older the chaos factor will decrease. Right now I just do the best I can. I stay focused as I can and I have learned I have to roll with the punches. If I don't then I REALLY get crazy.

    Good for you on the organizing. I need to work on some of that.

  17. I hear you, Shelley! I always know I am way out of control when my piles are too. There is nothing more satisfying than getting all of that in line again, is there? It makes all the other stuff seem more do-able.

  18. I kid you not, I almost quit reading this post b/c reading about this chaos that I live made me anxious...then I kept reading and saw that the pix are organized, the drawers almost and I calmed down, but that calendar? Did you find it? If you do, let me know if my NEW walking capris are with it because I have searched this house upside down and can't find them.

  19. Thank you so much for your comments over on my blog - I feel so so so much better than I would have if I'd caved and I kept thinking about what you'd said while I was driving to the grocery store.


  20. There is so much of a connection - it is undeniable!
    It sucks so much to be on the wrong side of this equation.
    And it feels so good to get it right, doesn't it!


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