Tag Archives: organisation

Staying focused

Well I’m back, not that I really went anywhere, but I had a bit of a break.  It wasn’t planned or anything, it wasn’t one of those things where people say “i have to stay away to take care of other things”, it was just that I got so caught up with other things that I either forgot, didn’t have time, and yes even couldn’t be bothered.

Its not that I don’t enjoy blogging, I do, thats what has kept me going this long.  Not that I’m a veteran blogger or anything, but I wouldnt have lasted as long as I have had I not gotten anything out of it.  Theres something about it that makes me reflect on my life in ways that I normally wouldn’t, and through doing so I learn things about myself that I wouldn’t normally, or at become more aware of them.

Over the past few days, prompted by a lovely sister who made me realise that somebody out there actually noticed my silence, I have been thinking about coming back.  I have to admit that part of me thought it might be best to stay away for good, it does take a fair bit of my time, time that could be spent better.  But in all honesty, if I ask myself what have I be doing with that time saved, late at night, when the kids are in bed ….Have I been organising things?  Have I been engaging in worship?  Have I been sleeping earlier to ensure my body is well rested?  Unfortunately it is none of the above, at least not on a regular basis.  I have been doing stuff. A little bit here, a little bit there, nothing to show for it.  At least with my blog I have something, a record of my thoughts and views, insight to how I will grow and change.  And insha’allah an avenue through which people can come to understand more about the life of an everyday muslimah.

The past few days have reminded me of something that I am reminded of time and again, my inability to stay focused on things.  When I was young I’d often hear about these teens who’s interests changed like the wind.  They were never focused, kept changing their minds, and wasted a whole heap of time and money through their ever changing pursuits.  Strangely enough I was not one of these teens.  I was quite well grounded as a teen.  I knew what I wanted, and I worked hard to achieve it.  Not that everything went according to plan, it never does, but I was very determined and very focused.

As far as I understand for most people this is a phase that ends around early adulthood.  However, for me, it seems quite the opposite.  I was fine as an adolescent, but over the past few years I have noticed that I lack focus.  Ok maybe I’m a little bit past the category of early adulthood, but you get the idea. My interest drifts from one thing to the other, every time I insist that this will be different and I’ll see it through…but everytime without fail I let myself down.  I’m not entirely sure why.  Have I changed?  Or is it circumstances that make it so difficult for me to see things through?  When I was younger it was easy.  My job was to wake up, eat, drink, and do whatever I wanted to do.  So it was easy to achiive what I wanted to, I mean what else was there for me to do?

But now its different.  I wake up…actually no I don’t even have that luxury anymore.  I am woken up by a baby who is either jumping on me or pulling my hair for about 15 minutes before I finally resign myself to the fact that I am not likely to get anymore sleep.  I then proceed to make the kids breakfast, get us all dressed and ready for wherever we have to go, usually school.  I come home and clean the kitchen, fold the washing, do more washing, clean and tidy, hang the washing out, prepare lunch, get my son from school, do homework, prepare dinner, showers, read to the kids, get them all off to bed.  It is seldom that I have some time to do something for myself.  Even picking up a book to read is a rare luxury when the kids are awake.  And by the time they head off to bed I am so exhausted that I just want to relax and do nothing.

So part of me can understand how I got here, but it doesn’t make it less frustrating.  There is so much I want to do, so much I am interested in, but so little time. But I often wonder, am I the only mother like this.  Often other mothers seem so together and so organised, but I have learnt that looks can be deceiving.  I know I should just cherish this time, my children will only be young once, and they grow up so fast, I should just saviour their childhoods.  And don’t get me wrong, I love it.  Seeing them grow and develop, I can’t begin to explain how beautiful this is, how it fills my heart with more love and joy than I thought possible.  But at the same time I wonder if I was just a little more organised, a little more focused, would I be able to see things through?

I think there are some small steps that I can easily take that I will look to do.  Firstly, I will note a couple of things I will like to acheive before the end of the year.  I will also look into GTD again, I have everything I need now so no excuses, I just have to find the book lol  And last but of course not least I will make dua for allah to bless my time and to help me with my organisation.

Hopefully this blog entry is not a one off, and I’ll be posting regularly again.


The promise…

Bismillahi ir-rahman ir-rahim – In the name of Allah, most gracious, most merciful

Earlier today I had a delivery.  My long awaited desk has finally arrived, and with it the promise of a new beginning.  This piece of furniture has the ability to change my life…or so I’ve convinced myself.  I spent months looking for the perfect desk, but to  no avail.  Then a few days ago, after resigning myself to the fact that this perfect desk does not exist (or at least not one with a price tag that appeals to me), I finally found a desk that was a good compromise between functionality and price, so I finally made the purchase and here it is, sitting it its  box, waiting to be assembled.

“So how does a piece of furniture become a life changing possession?” you may ask.  It all started last year.  In a desperate attempt to organise my life I purchased the best seller “Getting Things Done” by David Allen.  I read it with hope and desperation.  I am tired of the lack of organisation that engulfs me.  It devours my energy, my motivation, my optimism, and most importantly it devours my time.  Time that I should spend reading quran, learning arabic, studying this beautiful deen.  Time that I should spend playing with my children, teaching them, being a positive model of organisation and help prevent them inheriting this awful trait that their parents posses.  Time that I should spend making this house immaculately clean.  Time is a precious resource, we have to savour and make the most of every moment before it runs out.  Once time is gone it is gone forever, we can never get it back.

A filing cabinet is an important tool to this Getting Things Done (GDT) system of organisation.  So I needed a desk that had a filing cabinet so I could begin my journey, and here it is…sitting in its box.  It doesn’t look much like a life changing piece of furniture, but this is it!  It has to be.

In the end I know it is just a piece of furniture, it is but a tool, a means to an ends.  I am not naive, I know this will not magically change my life.  The change needs to come from me.  But its a start, and I hope the beginning of a journey that will motivate me to continue to be organised and stay on top of the millions of things that life throws at me.  But I say this hesitantly, full of anxiety.  Have you not had many starts before?  Why is this start different?

My instinctive answer to this question is simple.  This start is different because I need it to be.  However, this is not my only response.  “Getting Things Done” is a great book and a wonderful system.  Its  a best seller that thousands have used to get themselves organised.  I am not the only one who has used this in an attempt to organise their lives, and I know many have succeeded.  I know it won’t be easy, its not a miracle cure, but I also know that there is a reason for my lack of organisation which is a bit deeper than a lack of energy or laziness.  I think these are perhaps a symptom of the problem. It is likely the problem is that I don’t really know how to be organised, and living in an organised manner just reinforces the cycle by leaving you depleted of energy and unmotivated.  After all, if its going to take me hours to catch up, hours that I just don’t have, then I may as well just relax and deal with it when I have time.  Whereas if I was on top of it all, and it would only take me 5 minutes to do, I’d be happy to give up those 5 minutes.

So here I am, trying to achieve what has been beyond my fingertips my entire life.  I probably haven’t chosen the best time, I recently started my 6 month old on solids, and just started toilet training my 3 year old, I wouldn’t blame anybody for thinking I was a little insane for not waiting.  But if i keep waiting for the perfect time it will never happen, there is never a perfect time with 3 young children.  And I need to do this now, for the sake of Allah, for myself, for my children, and last but not least, for my sanity.  I don’t expect it to happen overnight, but I do hope to slowly chip away at it until one day I wake up and I realise I am finally there. Who knows, I might even get to blog about it.  But for now I’m off to read the many blogs from those who have already implemented the GDT system for some much needed advise and wisdom.