Self-discipline, talking to me…


I’ve been dealing with me for four days, and I’m seeing cracks in my own armor.  Not that this is a bad thing, because self-examination is the best way to find out what’s really wrong with yourself, if you take the time to reflect.  My wife is away for a couple weeks, longer than ever in our 25 years of marriage. What I’m seeing in me is the lack of the discipline to run my household the way my wife runs it when she’s home.  When she’s home, it’s a well-oiled machine.  She’s the driver, and keeps things up.  Laundry, dishes, watering plants, making the bed, everything.  I cook, sorta clean, and do the heavy construction stuff.  I build things.

What I’m seeing is that I need to motivate myself to do the things she does, even though it’s a losing battle.  She works a few hours a day, and has several hours each day to do stuff around the house.  I have after work, and weekends.  By my calculations, she has about 20 hours a week when I’m not home to take care of the home.  If you include the weekends add another 16.  I think I could probably maintain if I had 36 hours a week to do it.  But I don’t.  And I’m lagging.  On top of it all, I’m not sleeping very well.  But truth be told, if I had done some of the stuff over the weekend, I could be on top.  And I didn’t.  I took on a pet project to organize all our electronic media-CD’s, DVDs, and organize my library.  I got sidetracked, and started ripping CD’s and copying video tapes to DVD.  And surfing the internet.  And watching football.  I did get some things done-I got some repairs done, and broke something.  I watered, fed the birds, and did some other stuff.

At any rate, I am praying, this Advent, for God to grant me more self-discipline.  I need to motivate myself to do what I ought, not just what I want.  I know I have it in me.  I motivate myself to pray the Divine Office each morning, seldom missing a day.  I haven’t missed Sunday Mass in almost 8 years.  I’ve lost 30 lbs. by going to Mass almost every day, not at the closest parish, but the one half a mile further, up a hill.  When I can find external motivators, I do better.  I know, you might say “What better external motivator do I need than a wife who would be very upset if she came home to a disaster?” and you’d be right.  But I need to rev my own engine.  God, grant me that.

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