A life coach who I once worked with used to have me make a list of what she termed “tolerations” and then work at eliminating each of these. She described toleration as something that you put up with or tolerate while it steals your time and energy. It usually takes up space, prevents you from feeling organized and occupies your thoughts.
This week I was thinking about all the things that were piling up at the office because I just hadn’t had the time to deal with them. These were tasks that I had been neglecting because none of them were top priority or of an urgent nature but as the numbers increased, I realized that they starting to weigh me down.
On Saturday I made up my mind that I was going to go to the office and get rid of as many of these tolerations as possible.
I began by making a list of all the things that needed to be done and, to be honest, it was almost overwhelming! I really wasn’t looking forward to this and had to do a lot of self-talk in order to motivate myself both physically and mentally.
But, when I arrived at the office I made a plan. I decided to start in one room and complete all the tasks in that area before moving on to the next room. So, in the conference room I filled the fridge with bottles of water and did a little dusting and sorting before oiling the teak table. By the time I had completed a good vacuuming of the chairs and floor, it looked like a photo from a magazine. My energy suddenly increased.
On to the therapy room which I tried to view with objectivity so that my actions would make it appealing to the eye and comfortable for the clients.
It didn’t take long until I had finished the work there and could move into the administration office!
Even though there was a pile of paperwork facing me, I now had a renewed determination to get through it.
Years ago, I read a book about organization where I learned a good strategy. The author stated you save time and focus when you only touch a piece of paper once. That was good advice!
I begin by reading, responding and filing before reaching for the nest sheet of paper.
As the pile got smaller, my energy level increased. I then filled the paper trays for the printers, ordered supplies and even answered correspondence before my replies were due. I sent emails requesting information for things that I had been thinking about for a long time.
There was a healthy sense of elation when I left the office six hours later. I wasn’t at all resentful for giving up time from my regular day off. In fact, I was able to give thanks for the good feeling that I had on the drive home.
Oh, there are still some “tolerations” at the office that I will need to attack on a future date. But, in the meantime, I plan to focus on the freedom of knowing that tasks on the list created earlier in the day are all completed. The desk and the office are clean and organized!
What tolerations do you have in your life that are weighing you down?
Begin by writing a complete and honest list of all the things that need to be done. Then set aside a little time and energy when you won’t be distracted to complete the tasks on the list.
You will be amazed at how wonderful you are going to feel when you are done!