Saturday, January 12, 2013

Phone Free Day

I have finally come out of denial to accept the fact that I spend far too much time talking on the phone on days when I have scheduled myself to do major house cleaning or church projects.  Instead of just setting the phone aside on those rare days that my husband is out of town for the entire day and occasionally checking for job related messages, I see my friends' and family's names and numbers pop up on call display and I answer the phone every single time.

That doesn't have to be a bad thing. It doesn't have to turn into a call that interrupts my entire day's schedule.  No, it doesn't at all.  I simply have to answer long enough to ascertain my friends and family are not in the midst of true crises or emergencies and then tell them I will call them back on another day, or at least later on after my work is done. But do I do that?  Nope!  Are my friends and family ruining my carefully planned schedule on purpose?  Nope!  Do they have some dire need to frustrate me by preventing me from doing my own work? Nope!  Have they formulated some sort of diabolical plot to upset my day and destroy my motivation to do what is necessary for living in my own house or helping my own husband at the church?  Nope again!

It is ME, ME I tell you! It is ME who doesn't explain to them that I am not in need of a break from my housework and should not take the time to chatter on and on for 30 minutes or more at a time. It is ME who refuses to say that I can only talk for 5 minutes and then I have to go.  I have great friends. I have a wonderful family. They would respect that.  So, the problem is not that my friends and family members call me.  The problem is my inability to be real about what I need to do and when I need to do it.

Reality hit me one day this past week when 5pm rolled around the day of a big housecleaning project and I had not completed, nor even started, a single task related to what I had planned for the day.  I was so angry with myself for spending that many hours on the phone that I started to cry.  How stupid can I be?  I am a grown woman and I don't have an aversion to housework. I simply enjoy talking to my family and friends more. I have allowed myself to live in LALA Land long enough.

And thus I must begin to take drastic steps to control my ever growing telephone chatting habit.  As of this week I am taking one full day per week to clean house and NOT, (do I hear and understand myself?), NOT answer the phone at all that day until my work is completed.

One other time in my life I was just this bad at playing on the phone and not implementing my own plans for the day.  I had to take the same drastic step then that I will take now: weaning myself off the extended phone calls for one day per week until I can get a better grip on myself.

Blogging and emails do not seem to take over my life and time the way I let the telephone calls take over.  When did I again stop screening personal calls and returning them later in the day?  When did I return to the stress of thinking that if the phone number on the call display is one I recognize there is some law that states I must drop everything and answer it immediately? 

I have become a phone addict.  My husband gave me an intervention about it this morning....oh, no, wait, it wasn't this was at noon. He couldn't do it this morning because I spent the whole morning on the telephone.........sigh........

Hello, my name is Susan and I am a telephone-aholic.

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