19 Comments
May 24Liked by Athena Walker

And once more you remind me to clean the kitchen πŸ˜‹

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May 25Liked by Athena Walker

Routines convince you that you have things to do. this motivates you to move. movement has a chemical effect on your brain, endorphins, seratonin, dopamine.

regarding dogs, i have had many and I've loved each one of them dearly. they all have different personalities, some more sensitive than others. i have a corgi now who runs away with his head down when you crinkle paper. he won't back down from any size dog challenging him but he's afraid of the sound of crumpling paper!

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May 24Liked by Athena Walker

All right, I'll clean and organize, goddammit. Just needed a bit of a reminder about the benefits of doing this.

Thanks, Athena!

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May 28Liked by Athena Walker

Is it just me or Athena's articles are just getting better and better?

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May 27Liked by Athena Walker

Cleaning up/tidying has always been a high-anxiety endeavor for me, and I learned through years of therapy that I had some major internal obstacles- a childhood in which my ability to clean and tidy was linked to my self worth; a non-sequential mind that impaired my ability to organize my surroundings without help; an expectation from my parents to exercise executive thinking at a young age when I was unable to do so. This developed into a toxic cycle of failure and self-doubt, and led to severe depression. Now, at the age of 37, I continue to struggle to disconnect my valuation of self-worth from my ability or inability to maintain order in my home. I desperately wish I could say that I have solved this exhausting riddle but I continue to fight an uphill battle trying to figure out how to create order in my home and maintain it. I have done my darnedest to break the cycle with my children, though. I work really hard to make it clear that they are worthy of love permanently and forever, and my love for them is not conditional. Failure to succeed at a task does not equate to being less valuable as a human being. So far, my 5 year old son doesn’t seem to be daunted or haunted by failure or mistakes, and he has plenty of tenacity, good will, and a desire to improve, so I hope that he will not inherit my debilitating anxiety.

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May 25Liked by Athena Walker

There is actually a popular book by a retired navy admiral called: William H. McRaven

Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life...And Maybe the World

I don’t know if Peterson got it from him, but the ideas in the book are good.

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May 25Liked by Athena Walker

before moving to my current place, i rented rooms/couchsurfed for years - some with friends, some with acquaintances. and my worst home experience (as someone who thrives off of a strict routine) was renting a room in the house of a hoarder. i already kept everything of mine clean, but that was good motivation never to stop. πŸ€’πŸ‘ŽπŸΌ

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May 25Liked by Athena Walker

Heh, there's one problem I've always had with the 'Make your bed' JBP rule. See, I figured out early on in my marriage (26 year anniversary coming up soon) that we both steal the covers. That sucks, so rather than both being miserable, I opted for pragmatism... and now we each have our own washable comforter (no top sheets) for our side of the bed. Works great!

But since 'making the bed' would therefore involve each of us having a folded up comforter on our side, and since he goes to bed several hours before I do, making the bed means that I'd wake him up unfolding/spreading out my comforter at night, and he'd wake me up folding up his comforter in the morning. 'Making our bed' each day would make our quality of life WORSE.

I'm fine with it as a metaphor. I'm just going to mentally translate it as 'clean your kitchen' or 'scrub your toilet.'

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May 25Liked by Athena Walker

Such an inspiring message, Athena. It especially resonated with me as I'm finishing up spring cleaning, trying to be thorough, unhurried, and mindful when I have a million other things I'd rather be doing. But, it's terribly important. Everything thrives better in a clean and calm environment. Thank you for keeping me motivated while I Marie Kondo my house.

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The little victories are so important with depression. When I was depressed, I was a mess, no idea how I lost myself so much: I was 15 kilos up, I had forgotten to shave for God knows how long, and I hadn't smiled in so long I couldn't even remember. Not even a joke would make me laugh. I felt nothing, but I knew I could feel.

Anyway, my therapist told me the same, it all starts with making the bed. Another idea was if you don't like how you look right now, put some make up on! And so on... It came to a point that I even managed to exercise every day for 2 weeks and see some results.

In my case at least, the cycle went from the inside out. Meaning, first I had to acknowledge the win of waking up and maybe even being on time to my first event of the day. Then, it was some things outside me, like the bed, cooking, cleaning, etc. Once all that felt more rutinary I could move to bigger tasks like exercising.

Little by little, routine helps. What puzzles me is why people reject it so much on the basis that it's boring. I'll take boring anytime now over that person I was.

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