I would love to be more productive. There are four areas in my life that demand productivity from me. They include:
- Garden/yard work/pool maintenance.
- Spending time with my grandchildren: coming up with creative things to do that keep them busy.
- Homekeeping: Laundry, cleaning, grocery shopping, meal planning, cooking.
My first response to accomplishing all of this is to start my day in Bible study and prayer at 5:00 a.m. Even when my alarm goes off and I am extremely tired— I drag myself up, make a cup of coffee, and head to my office. I have found that it is impossible for me to have the right spirit, or produce anything, without this first step every day. And I’m very glad that Jesus meets me there in my unpresentable night clothes, messy hair, and no makeup look.
But, the new rule that I have been seeing for quite some time on YouTube is to get up, make your bed, and get dressed in a nice/professional outfit. Do your hair, makeup, and even if you work from home, be so presentable that you could run out at a moments notice. To sum all of that process up I would say— make yourself look like you are going to work in an office or preparing to do a YouTube video:)
I have a hard time implementing this rule.
But I am trying.
I recently went through my closet, getting rid of anything that is not considered respectable to wear. Most of my old garden clothes went in the trash. Some of my other clothes will be donated. I tried to leave only what I would not mind being seen in on a YouTube channel. I need to go through the closet several more times to actually get it hard core ready for YouTube or Pinterest wear.
After breakfast, I start the morning with pool care, gardening, and yardwork.
The YouTubers I see, go out to garden in cute sundresses, curled hair under broad brimmed sun hats, full makeup, and ruffled aprons to keep their clothes clean. I don’t know where these YouTubers live, but here is the South, you are only out for a few minutes before you are dripping with sweat. If I don’t wear pants tucked into garden boots, I usually end up with stinging fire ant bites. I put a ball cap on and pull my pony tail through to keep the wind from blowing it off. That keeps me from getting cancer on the top of my head or dying of heat stroke. I am usually covered from head to toe in dirt as I wipe the sweat off my face with the back of my glove, use my dirty shirt tail to remove sweat, or sling dirt while I’m trying to dig out weeds with a mattock.
When I’m too hot to work outside anymore, I come in and do laundry, fix lunch, ect. I clean up and change clothes so I can actually sit on furniture, but I don’t want to dress in my best because, I’ve not showered yet. There is no point, as I repeat the process in the evening after supper. I leave the baseball cap on all day since by this time there is no redeeming my hair from the sweat and grim accumulated under the hat.
After lunch, I write. In my not very YouTube worthy outfit that I would not want to be seen out in public in.
After writing I spend time on more laundry, housecleaning, cooking supper, and then go back outside to work. I finally get my bath late at night. I know I’m supposed to go to sleep in “presentable pajamas”, but I don’t really have any.
Next day, unless I’m going to shop for groceries, have grandchildren to keep, or run errands—it is lather, rinse, repeat.
Now, I would like to change this process. I would like to go to the garden in a Pinterest worthy outfit, so that if I get bit by a snake in my jungle of a garden, I would look presentable when I arrive at the hospital.
I would like to do my writing and housework in gorgeous clothes, with full makeup and polished nails, so when I get a glance of myself in the mirror, or see my hands, I actually feel good about myself. Seeing yourself looking so good is apparently the key to the increase of productivity. You work better when you look and feel good about yourself.
We all want to be more productive. The only days I feel that I might be YouTube ready is when I’m running to the library, grocery store, or church. It does feel good to be clean and dressed in something nice. And, I would love to do this all the time, but really, I don’t know how.
If you have been able to implement the dressing well and being presentable in your daily work environment, I would love to hear how you have done that. Has it increased your productivity? Please feel free to comment below:)
After years of dressing to work at our boys’ schools, or a church function or service, I’m enjoying living in what’s comfortable while I’m in my home, and even my yard. I still dress when we leave to go anywhere in public—the grocery, doctor’s offices, church, out to eat. I don’t really care what anyone else is doing. I have to be who I am. I admire those Pinterest or YouTube people. But remember, they’re dressing to make people think that’s how they always are. Like our many FB friends with the perfect hair, clothes, nails, family. God knows the REAL us. We can be real, or we can try to impress people we don’t even know by being something we really aren’t or don’t want to be, or we can be the person God created us to be. He knows my heart and He doesn’t care too much about what I look like when I garden or mop my floors. I can assure you I’d be much less efficient in the garden or mopping my floors if I thought I was going to mess up my good clothes! Nope. Not for me. You’ve seen me on Zoom. No makeup, my holey, grubby clothes. That’s the real me. In fact, you should see me right now. Grubby, wrinkled capris and a $5 Wal-Mart shirt. Perfect for a day of writing, yard work, or mopping my floors. I’m too old to worry about what anyone else thinks.
But kudos to those who do.
Thank you for sharing this wisdom, Debbie. We definitely all need to be more real and stop worrying about what others think. We all will definitely be on the right track when we make what God thinks the most important and know that He looks past the outside of us and sees our hearts:)
That’s a tall order Jane! I hope you get there someday. Being a guy may skew what I do, but for me, comfort trumps how I look. For me, productivity is increased if I’ve taken my shower, made my bed, and dressed in my “work clothes.” Depending on the work, I’m pretty rough for outdoor activities in the yard, a bit better for writing at home, and maybe nicer for writing outside my home, or picking up groceries or something like that (though the spectrum isn’t very broad now that I think about it). But I wholeheartedly agree that taking care of some of the morning basics prior to getting to work helps a lot. Thanks for sharing this.
You’re right, Tim. It does create a certain order to the day if you get ready first. And, God is a God of order for sure.
I do find that I feel more like I’ve officially started my day if I make my bed and get dressed for the day. I think it creates a shift in your mind that you’re moving from leisure/rest time to work time. Now, I don’t always put on make-up and curl my hair, but I do at least brush my hair, brush my teeth, put in earrings (like any good Southern girl), and put on clothes I don’t mind the Amazon delivery person seeing me in. Ha ha. I don’t think you have to look Instagram-worthy all the time to still look put together, but part of their job is aesthetics, so I get it. For us regular folk, I think a simple, classic outfit always looks put together, no matter the occasion.
Good ideas, Allison! To think of it as a “shift in your mind…from leisure/rest time to work time.” And going with classic/timeless clothes makes dressing faster and easier. I watched a Hallmark movie last night where a grandma was taking care of her home (farm), husband, mother-in-law, and granddaughters. It was set in the 1960’s and her outfit for the day was a housedress, and tennis shoes. No matter what she was doing, she looked put together and would go to town at a moments notice if she needed something. Of course that is the movies for us. We can only dream about always looking that good in the real world:)
I dress for the activity, and don’t care much what the world thinks. I work indoors, so I dress for office work, do my hair, and put on make-up. 🙂 Grateful God and my friends love me no matter what. ha
Dressing for the activity makes a lot of sense:)