Tonight, apparently, I’m so supposed to put my clothes out. No, they’re not going to be on fire.
I will not stand above my wardrobe, flame torch aloft, squinting in a focused way at my granny panties.
I will not then fetch a hose and call the fire department.
No. I will select an outfit and put my clothes out for the next day.
The thought makes me feel muscularly confident.
Put My Clothes Out
You know, I actually sort of pride myself on how well my wardrobe works. I keep my clothes in bins on a deep bookshelf. Underwear in one bin, bras in another, and a series of bins for my signature wrinkle-free dresses. I keep a tie rack full of necklaces right above. So in the morning, I pull out my underthings, slip on a dress, and whip a necklace around my neck.
It’s a system that works for me.
However, it does have bubbles of trouble. I own very few bras (the perils of being a semi-minimalist) so I often find myself hunting around for a clean bra, failing, and then putting on a bra that I’ve found in the dirty clothes hamper. Sometimes I have no clean dresses, so I need to put on an emergency speed-wash-style load of laundry.
My seven-year-old handles the laundry. He does it every morning but his technique needs to be ironed out.
Ironed out! Get it?
Full disclosure: I never iron my clothes. See above regarding the wrinkle-free dresses part.
This System May Avoid Those Bubbles of Trouble
It’ll help me figure out if I have clean bras and dresses. I rarely have no underwear. I wised up to that years ago and now I have maybe one hundred pairs of underwear. As God is my witness, I shall never wear dirty underwear or go commando again.
So, if I can figure out the status of my clothes, I can do a speed-wash the night before and put those clothes away in their bins and then put out my clothes without having gobs of stress about it.
This seems attractive to me.
I am concerned that I will forget to do it – I don’t currently have much of a bedtime routine. Admission: I have had to get out of bed at least once to go shine my sink.
However, that habit is getting ever-so-slowly more solid, so perhaps I can anchor the “put my clothes out” habit right onto that. Habit-stacking. I know about that strategy. I’m an adult!
Now, How Are Those Other Baby Steps Going?
Well, I got dressed to shoes.
I fixed my hair and face and woke up to a shining sink. Note “Makeup? What makeup? look. That was fun to do.
And I put out a hot spot for two minutes. I really enjoy those. They make me all flappy and giddy and competitive. Today I chose my dining room table.
I’ve also read my reminder sticky note and thought a bit about negative self-talk.
For the first time, today, the system is feeling a little bit overwhelming. I’m hoping that the disparate habits will chunk together so I perform them all in one fell mental whack instead of doling out each action piece-meal.
So, How is This Working for My Bipolar Brain?
Well, right now I’m in a stable phase. I’m not obsessed with Flylady. I’m not reading her material for hours or researching her online. I’m just going through her baby steps. I’m also not depressed or manic.
I think one of the great things about Flylady is that you can take it down a notch when you’re not well. For example, I can remind myself that when I’m depressed I can do fewer of the habits. And when I’m manic, I can remind myself to take it easy and address the mania instead of burning myself out.
But it will take remembering that and not getting stressed out by thoughts of perfection or self-loathing or an urge to do the appropriate thing instead of taking care of myself.
Here’s Your Homework
Why don’t you try it and put out your clothes for tomorrow? It can’t hurt.
Wow. That was tempting fate. Nevermind.
But do try it and see what happens. Comment below and let me know if you found it helpful! And, as always, if you found this blog post helpful, please do reach out and share it with a friend.