THE RULE OF FIVES

We live in an age where we have plenty of time to amuse ourselves and be lazy. We are accustomed to a cushy, easy life, sitting, not too much hard work. We don't feel like doing too much work. Meanwhile, there are a number of requirements demanded of us in modern life--housework, medical appointments, errands, yardwork, etc. If we want to complete things consistently and successfully, we really have to force ourselves to stay on top of the right things (some stuff we make time for is not necessary).

I don't do a lot of sleeping and sometimes during the day, I get tired, but I say, "Night time is for sleeping." Not to say that I never konk out for 15 minutes, but that is not often. I make myself go forward, although I get tired and also possess the same infirmity many other "moderners" do--I want to do the things I want to do. It may want to research something, but how can I research or go to the beach and the house is a mess?

I have found something that works for me and allows me to break up my daily demands into smaller (hence easier) pieces. Some people like working on big housework projects, but I don't. I call this technique, the "rule of fives." I've shared it with others who also liked it. Somebody said it basically makes housework fun and like exercise. Here is how the "rule of fives" works:

Let's say I want to work on a long project, but I have been working on several housework tasks to complete.

  • I go to the kitchen and literally do five things, e.g., putting away five dishes out of the dish rack (three forks, a spoon, and a plate--five things).
  • I go to the family room and do five things, e.g., straighten five books on the bookshelf or put away three pencils, a paperclip that is on the floor, and file a document.
  • I go put a load of clothes in the wash and then go through the cycle again--kitchen, family room, laundry.

    This is only an example. I might be doing some research. I say, "I am going to make these business calls first." I do that and then begin my research. An hour later I say, "I need to put the chicken in the oven." I then clean up behind myself and go back to my project for a while, etc.

    Another thing I do. Let's say I've eaten and think, "I don't feel like cleaning up." Then I think, "Well, you just ate so you have the calories to clean up"--so I do it.

    It may seem that not much gets done when one does five things, but actually a lot does happen and it happens quickly. You are moving in a flowing circuit and everything is very fast. Some people prefer to work on one thing--we are all different, but I like quick projects.

    [An aside (of sorts): We live in irregular times and with the perpetual electronic distractions like the computers, cell phones, etc., many don't know how to order a life outside of them. We are accustomed to hunting down more data. We actually have to seek ways to engage in a real, non-electronic life (I've read that the modern cancer epidemic may be caused by electrification). The work lifestyle that I often speak of is a life of productivity. In the New Testament epistlels, the Bible speaks a lot about work. "Created unto good works," "study to be quiet, and do your own business working with your own hands," etc. When one lives the work lifestyle, at the end of the day, he looks back and see that a lot has been accomplished.]

    The rule of five works so well for me. Oftentimes, I do five things and basically say, "Surely I could do this and this, too,"--and end up completing a lot. But sometimes I think, "Okay, five is enough."


    [2-28-16]


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