Whether we realize it or not, most of us have a little extra time on our hands. It is that few minutes we have “between” appointments, daily chores and other responsibilities.
Have you ever been running an errand or been in the middle of a busy situation when suddenly everything changed? Perhaps someone did not show up for an appointment, or you were with a friend who changed the agenda for some reason. Perhaps you went shopping to pick up something but found that the item was not available so you ended up with an unexpected “new direction” on your hands. It is then that you will find that you are able to “piddle on purpose.”
However, there is one item you will need in order to do your best “piddling.” I have discovered that if I keep a small, pocket-sized, spiral notebook with me at all times, I can jot down my ideas, thoughts, and needs as they arise. Then later, rather than having to rely on my memory, I can simply review the notes in my small notepad to be reminded of what I need to pick up or do. I also know you can make a list in one of your electronic devices, like a cell phone. Just be sure it is something that you are always carrying with you!
I learned this lesson the hard way. I have often thought to myself, “Oh, I will remember what I need when I get to the store,” only to discover that I could not, in fact, remember what I needed after I got there. I have shared this concept with many people and I always get the same reaction. They smile and say, “I know exactly what you’re talking about. I am always and forever saying, ‘I will remember to do that or pick up that item when I am at the store.’ But then when I get there I end up standing in the aisle staring into space, wondering what I was supposed to get!”
There is something freeing about jotting down your thoughts. I have discovered that it keeps my mind clear and uncluttered to write things down. The process removes the “clutter” from my mind and moves it on to the paper or device. Then, during those “unexpected” times, I can rely on my handy notes to help me remember an item I needed to pick up or something I needed to do.
If I have plans with one of my daughters, I generally will end up having ten or fifteen minutes “piddling” time while I am with them. When that happens, I just sort of stroll off, get out my notes and use my list to pick up any items I may need if we are shopping.
Of course this does not work all the time, but I have been pleasantly surprised how many times I have been in a situation when I could “piddle on purpose.” I want to make the most of my time without feeling like I am “driven” or rushed every day. This little technique has caused me to have the freedom to put less important items in my notes and then refer back to them when I have one of those “in-between times.”
Someone once wisely noted that it is not the big situations in life that will hurt you as much as it is the “little foxes that spoil the vineyard.” This is one methodology that I have learned to use to keep those “little foxes” from messing up my day. I hope that you will start practicing this technique as well. It is an excellent idea that will help you to get more done with less effort and less stress.
Tip: Piddle on Purpose!
Have a great week! God bless you!
Dr. Robert A. Rohm