Life for Lazy People: an Introduction

I’m always aiming to end up somewhere like this.

Confession: In my heart, I am a lazy woman. Many times people compliment my energy and productivity, but I realized the truth a long time ago – most of what I do I do because I am trying to get enough accomplished so I can goof off for awhile. I love nothing better than to find myself with a free afternoon, a comfortable spot to lounge, and an absorbing novel or a string of old British sit-coms.

Today here at In My Kitchen, In My Life, we are starting a periodic series called Life for Lazy People, about the things I have learned that make it easier for a lazy person like me to get things done well and still have time to visit with Dr. Lewis and Mrs. Lindbergh or, yes, even Dame Judi Dench and Mr. Geoffry Palmer. I say “get things done well” because, although I am shamelessly lazy, excellence matters to me. There are people who count on me to do a good job with my responsibilities, to be productive, to serve. They deserve my best efforts, but if I can figure out a way to give excellent service without too much strain, this lazy person is thrilled.

Here are a few principles Lazy People should absorb and follow:

Spend time to make time. (Origin lost in the mists of time) This one is obvious, but maybe we don’t think about how many areas of life to which it applies. Start with a clean workspace to make cooking, crafting, painting, or whatever easier, more efficient, and more pleasant. Train your children diligently, starting when they are young, to make the teenage years far easier and more fun and to ensure a lifetime of close relationship. Pull up the weeds while they are small and long before they even think of going to seed to set yourself up for years of easier gardening to come. Check supplies before you start the recipe to ensure no mid-prep runs to the store.

Develop a front-log mentality. (credit: Don Aslett) Work ahead on big projects so they can be done in bite-sized chunks. Pace yourself according to your stamina, time available, and the predictability of your life. Margin is essential!

Do not make more than you are willing to maintain. (credit: me) Children. Pets. Activities. Flowerbeds. Commitments. Square-footage.

Here is enough to be going on with for today. It is really about using and developing our wisdom and circumspection (one of my favorite words!) to learn ways to make it possible for ourselves to be productively lazy.

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  1. Suze T
    Posted January 14, 2013 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

    We truly are kindred spirits! 🙂 I am a lazy person at heart also. I completely agree though with a little prep or clean up to make things go easier. I learned long ago to wash dishes as I cook. Then when I am through cooking…I don’t have a large amount of dishes to do also. I also admit, these skills become much easier as your children get bigger. For others who read this, don’t stress about big messes. Work on them but, never, never stress about it. Stress helps nothing and makes you old before you actually are old. And when you get ‘lazy time’….enjoy it to the fullest! 🙂

  2. Posted January 16, 2013 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

    OH I can tell I’m going to enjoy this series. . . it’s right up my alley. I read an article recently while I was in a waiting room, about being organised and it recommended each morning when you get up putting no more than 3 things on your ‘to do’ list. This way it makes you prioritize what is important for you to accomplish that day without overwhelming you with a list 15 items long. It as saying if you have 1 big project that you really want to accomplish just put that on the list for the day. Of course you will get other things done along the way (at least hopefully) but that way you can narrow your focus. I am going to try this to help me begin taking bites out of the daunting task that lie before me at the moment. Feeling a bit overwhelmed by all that is going on and that I have to do in my life right now so keeping daily smaller goals will probably help what I told Ed was the “swirling vortex of chaos” at the moment. Thanks for the helpful tips 🙂
    melaine recently posted..I say tomato they say . . . .My Profile

    • Posted January 17, 2013 at 6:00 am | Permalink

      Oooh, “swirling vortex of chaos” — great description. I think the “3 things rule” is great, particularly if you try hard to accomplish them as early in the day as you can. It also helps to make sure the important gets done instead of just always the urgent. Developing a front-log mentality also goes along with that, because it helps keep so many things from turning into “urgent.”
      Lori recently posted..Life for Lazy People: an IntroductionMy Profile

  3. Posted January 29, 2013 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    I stumbled upon your blog this morning. I look forward to poking around and seeing more!
    Ah, yes, I have the lazy gene. I appreciate the positive slant you put on this topic and will be watching and reading!
    hsmominmo recently posted..Organizing Revolution – The Home StretchMy Profile

  4. Posted February 5, 2013 at 11:51 am | Permalink

    Ah, I’ve been away from the computer so much, I’ve missed some much needed posts, I see! Can’t wait to more fully peruse your productivity for lazy people posts. 🙂
    April Starr recently posted..Stay tuned – we’re getting a new Abode!My Profile

  • Your comment is the best part of this blog! Share what’s on your mind here.

  • In My Kitchen, In My Life is a place where women (and the odd male) can be encouraged, nudged, and occasionally kicked in the pants toward living their lives on a higher plane. Oh, and readers get plenty of chances to laugh at the author's foibles, which is always worth a click.

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