Yesterday I was putting away some laundry and noticed something interesting about my behavior that really made me start to think. There I was, pairing up some socks and putting them away in my drawer… when I realized that even though I had already come up with a system for organizing and storing my socks, I was actively choosing to do it a lazier and less organized way. I had two different methods setup for organizing my socks:
- My fancy work socks get folded as pairs and stored so I can easily identify the colors/patterns on them to best match my outfit. These have their own drawer, and this saves me from having to dig through a pile of socks to find a matching sock or the specific pair I was hoping to wear!I recently look this photo of my socks because I had them all laid out and realized I may have a problem…
- My normal ankle socks, which I wear for more active things, get rolled together and tossed in a separate drawer which needs significantly less organization.
Unexpectedly enough, this whole realization happened while putting away the plain socks and not the fancy pairs! (which as you can see, definite take more effort) All I needed to do was to roll them together and toss them into the drawer… and I found myself opting to drop individual socks into the drawer to avoid the small amount of additional work required to roll each pair together first. At this point I took a moment to be introspective (one of my favorite pastimes) and realized that what I was lacking was ethical integrity.
Integrity is the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles, or moral uprightness. It is generally a personal choice to hold oneself to consistent moral and ethical standards. In ethics, integrity is regarded as the honesty and truthfulness or accuracy of one’s actions.
Now… I know how overblown and hyperbolic this diagnosis seems given the fact that it was literally only putting socks away; really, I do. However, if I cannot trust myself to follow the tiny system I created for myself in order to organize my sock drawer, how can I possibly be expected to manage much larger things like finances, relationships, and adulting in general? I feel that I am very good at maintaining a high level of integrity when I look at political and social issues; however, I have identified a clear lack of this quality within my daily life and especially when doing things for myself. This has to change… but how?
I’ve been feeling a little depressed lately, and something that I try to do, in order to get through these times, is to slow down and focus on doing the little day to day things that will keep my life moving forward, rather than digging myself into a hole and needing to eventually claw my way out of it. I was definitely more focused on doing chores like making sure that laundry basket didn’t get piled too high, and that extra focus led me to notice the corners I was cutting in even the most simplest of tasks. With that in mind, here’s how I’ve decided to go about tackling this issue:
I have a tendency of taking on far too much at once. When I’m feeling positive, I will weigh myself down by setting up a schedule that doesn’t even leave me spare seconds to breath (and also vastly underestimate the time required for most things). To counter-act this, I’ve decided that until the important items I’ve identified are more habitual, I need to focus as much as possible on those core issues. Knowing your limits and setting yourself up for success means taking on only as much as you can properly execute.
One habit I’ve developed is very quickly burning through to-do items, but not necessarily focusing on doing each of them properly. Wanting to create a better foundation of behavior for myself, so that I can continue to develop my will-power and integrity, I have come to the conclusion that I need to truly focus on execution. Doing the right thing, even during a seemingly meaningless task, is invaluable.
Just like with imposter syndrome, it can be very easy to overlook your own improvement and accomplishments. I have recognized that I am not taking the small amount of time it would take to look back each day and identify the things I feel I’ve done well, to just appreciate the effort I’ve put in or acknowledge the integrity behind wholly executing on each task. Momentum and motivation is created when you can look back at your work and be proud of what you’ve done.
- Do Less – Knowing your limits and setting yourself up for success means taking on only as much as you can properly execute.
- Execute – Doing the right thing, even during a seemingly meaningless task, is invaluable.
- Be Proud – Momentum and motivation are created when you can look back at your work and be proud of what you’ve done.
Thanks for reading, and I’m glad to be back!