Don’t Look at the Big Picture! or How to Get that Big Cleaning Job Done

We’ve all been there. You see that big pile of paper that keeps growing next to your computer, or all that dust accumulating on the furniture, or the floors looking ever more dingy in your home, or some other big household job that just seems to be getting ever bigger and more nagging!

You take it all in and just thinking about doing that big household job makes you too tired to do it!

Well, there is a better way and it’s more likely to get that job done. The first thing to do is to stop looking at the big picture!

Actually, this is most of the plan. Once, on a trip to the Grand Canyon, I was listening to a ranger speak at Phantom ranch, about hiking back up to the rim. Phantom Ranch lies at the bottom of the canyon and visitors there must hike down to it. Of course, this means they must hike up back to the rim in order to leave. This is a 9-mile hike with a 4,000 foot elevation gain.

The ranger told us that the best way to approach the hike back up was not to look at the full height of the rim, but instead look at the layers of colored rock individually.

Once you pass one layer in elevation, look only at the next layer. And this was excellent advice! Topping a layer was a far easier goal to achieve at a time than thinking about the entire rim’s height. Before I knew it, I was topping that last layer of rock and found myself at the top of the rim! Sure, I still hiked the same distance, but psychologically, it was a lot easier to do it piecemeal in my mind, and this made the hike easier to do!

Household chores that are big can be tackled the same way! That big pile of papers to go through? Just do a little at a time. If the papers are in a big mess, straighten them out and put them into several neat stacks on day one. Day two, go through a stack. If you’re busy with other things as well, take a few minutes between other tasks and go through 10-15 papers. Before you know it, that pile will look significantly smaller, then it will be gone!

Dusting? Just dust one or two pieces of furniture a day, instead of tackling all of the furniture that day. Two pieces of furniture would be a snap.  And the floors? Just do one room a day!

Yes, you’ll be doing that same big job, but in pieces. And thinking of just one “piece” of these jobs makes them look much smaller and easier to do. And you won’t be so tired just thinking about them!

If you like this plan, or anything else on this site, please let others know!

Thanks for reading and good luck cleaning!  🙂

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