Wednesday, 17 February 2010

Making A Start

Today, I Made A Start. Let me explain. There are a few goals on my 101 in 1001 list which are there because they need to be done, rather than being things that I simply want to do or try. They're not hard to pick: anything that involves sorting out, purging, organising, or clearing out is going to take several attempts and many have been ongoing since this project started.

According to the ever wise FlyLady, I may be experiencing a form of Scarlett O'Hara syndrome. In a Facebook note about clutter the other day, FlyLady reminded us of this famous quote from Gone With The Wind, showing Scarlett's resolve to prosper once more after suffering one of her many setbacks: "As God is my witness, they're not going to lick me. I'm going to live through this and when it's all over, I'll never be hungry again." OK, so I'm not hungry, but FlyLady reworded the quote to talk about clutter. I'm rather good at accumulating stuff, despite occasionally attempting decluttering binges, or even ongoing pruning. It would appear that my professional life is not much different to my personal life, in this regard.

But, today I Made A Start on two tasks which I technically want to do, but am somewhat daunted (and more than a little bored) by: #44 and #45 - Sort out/purge/organise my teaching/MEd resources. I love this post from Blogger in Middle-earth about where to start on a major project. His advice: start anywhere, but do start. I've put this off for long enough!

I've ended up grouping these tasks together as I have discovered that they are more interlinked than I first thought. Spurred on by a close friend and colleague finishing her MEd yesterday (whose 25 000 word dissertation I spent several weeks editing for her - twice!), I decided that all the readings and materials I've been holding onto in hard copy since I finished my own degree in 2005 were now largely redundant. As she handed my dissertation back to me yesterday, which she had been using as a style guide for her own project but I personally had not picked up in the years since it was submitted, I realised that everything I might 'need' is in that single brick of a document. I have references to help me find specific articles or readings if I require them again at some stage in the future, and my ever-trusty notebook contains detailed notes about content. It was time to go through my boxes of paperwork and begin the process of purging.

So how did I do? Well, I dived into the first box and found a music programme I'd come across when I was teaching juniors in 2000, a few folders of maths problem solving activities from 1999, science unit plans from 1997 ... get the picture? It's unlikely I'll return to teaching again any time soon, and even more unlikely that I'll need to refer to material that is now up to 14 years old. Interspersed were assorted course readings, which were culled and put into a bag for my two-year-old nephew to draw on the back of; hopefully that will stop him trying to grab paper out of my brother's printer to play with. It's going to take a while to finish both these tasks, but at least I've Made A Start.


saveyoursoul said...

Yay for making a start <3 Also I love that you changed your comments to cups of coffee. Super cute.

Stacy said...

Well starting is the hardest part, you are now on your way!!

Sab said...

I always find starting the project the hardest. Like baking... just getting out that bowl and starting to measure flour is a huge step in getting those cookies done. Why is starting so tough, I wonder?

Congrats on starting what sounds like a daunting task! Good luck!