I laughed at this cartoon pre-lockdown because I’d be the first to admit there were some elements of truth in it for me. I knew that inviting people round on a regular basis was doubly beneficial to me – not only did I enjoy their company but it also kept me on my toes in terms of doing my share of keeping our house clean and tidy.

When lockdown came, the visitors obviously did not. I was fortunate I could carry on working from home and so I kept myself busy. However, in the third week of staying indoors, I realised I’d need to find new ways to motivate me for cleaning the house.

Though people often think of motivation as being directed towards achieving something, in some contexts avoiding certain things motivates a person to take away from actions. Whilst, I’m by no means a ‘house proud’ person, the thought of guests seeing the mess it sometimes slides into, always energises me to spring into action. My motivation for house cleaning certainly has away from tendencies!

With lockdown’s lack of visitors, I decided to create another way of tidying up. With supposedly more time available – I’d declutter. I’d done plenty of this in the past and had found taking photos of the objects before giving them away a great way of keeping the memories alive.

I made a good start with rolling clothes the Marie Kondo way, however her ‘Does it bring you joy?’ test brought mixed results. There are numerous things in our house that do not exactly ‘bring me joy’ but I do not want to get rid of them. I had previously used what can also be quite a ruthless question: ‘Have I used this object in the last 5 years?’ However, I have learnt to tread carefully with these types of questions because many times I’ve been thankful that I kept something for which, in previous weeks, I had answered ‘no’. Further adding to the challenges of passing on ‘preloved’ belongings, the charity shops have understandably not been open for receiving donations.

So, as I dig deeper into the relative importance I place on the values that drive my motivation in this ‘new normal’, the learnings continue …

What have you learnt through lockdown? Please share in the Facebook post comments.

Image published under license from Everyday People Cartoons.