There are three things I immediately stop doing whenever I am busy or stressed and they are:
1. Mopping the floor
2. Plucking my eyebrows
3. Hanging my clothes up on actual clothes hangers
It happens in that order and it’s so, so sad because these are the three things that make me feel like I’m winning in life. If I mop the floor I am an awesome housewife and responsible parent. When we drop food on the floor and pick it up and eat it, it’s not that big a deal. When my kids crawl around on the floor playing games, I can sit back in smug mum mode and let them.
Mopping the floor is also my stress reliever. Every night after my babies are asleep I tidy the house and the last thing I do before putting my feet up is to mop. It makes me feel like no matter how our day has been, I’m ending it well. The smell of my floor cleaner triggers in me a sense of satisfaction that stays with me as I drift off to sleep. It smells like disinfectant and pine.
My eyebrows are another story. I can normally find time to do my hair and makeup, to put on the occasional facemask, but plucking my eyebrows is a luxury I often don’t have time for. My eyebrows aren’t too hideous when not plucked but there are a couple of obnoxiously dark hairs that need to be taken care of most weeks. For some reason my left eyebrow always grows back faster than my right. Having perfectly shaped eyebrows makes me feel like I’m well-groomed even when I haven’t done anything particularly special at all.
I used to get them waxed but who has time for that? Plus, my blind beautician often went overboard and took half of them off. Much easier to pluck them myself, when I have time. It’s an easy enough job with my new little vanity mirror (which unfortunately highlights all my other facial flaws – the pores on my nose are SO BIG!). But time, where is the time? Sometimes I don’t even have five minutes for this.
I’ve always been a clothes thrower. I start off the week well. I hang my clothes up and put the dirty ones in the clothes basket. Then I start hanging them on my book shelf. When that pile falls on the floor I shove it on the bottom of my wardrobe. Then I get to a point where they are all there. I’ve laundered my clothes and folded them but what’s the point of putting them away properly, until I put the rest away? So they go on top of that pile.
This is not the person I want to be. I want to be the kind of person who gets all her laundry done over the weekend, irons everything, hangs everything up and spends a few minutes each morning flicking through clothes hangers to select my cleaned, ironed, ready-to-wear fabulous outfit for my amazing day.
Just three little things that are my ‘reveals’, which mean I can’t hide the fact I am too busy and too tired. I suppose at the end of the day we all have them and if this is as bad as it gets, then it’s not all that bad.
Except I know the floor is dirty, my eyebrows are unruly and my clothes are in a pile on the floor of my wardrobe. But the feeling when I get time to do all three of those things, is like no other. I feel triumphant!
Yes, I know how sad this sounds.
What activities do you stop when you are too stressed, busy and tired?