The Temporal Tyranny of Small Chores

Was listening to a podcast today that talked about how the little chores you do can weigh heavily on your mind as these “grand things to do” when in reality they don’t really take much time at all. And I was just nodding my head while listening, cause THAT’S ME!

I really need to make a GIF of the Bene Gesserit, Gaius Helen Mohiam, screaming “GET OUT OF MY MIND” from David Lynch’s Dune. There are often times when I’ll be reading a comment somewhere or listening to a story and I’ll see the exact thoughts I’ve had articulated by someone that is not me. And every time that happens, I think of that scene in Dune.

Anyway, chores vis-a-vis the time I think it will take me to complete them and the actual time it takes to complete them. Yes, I will get up in the morning and think, I have a full day today I must do laundry, clean the kitchen, and take out the trash. Yes, indeed, a full day. Lot’s of work. I’m a worker! Work!

And 45 minutes later, I’m done.

That’s it?

That’s it.

Oof. What a day of work, right? Hard work. Work.


This happens all the time. It’s been happening all the time for the *cough* 39 *cough* years I’ve been on this planet. And yet I still haven’t figured out that chores often don’t take that long. In fact, I tend to overestimate the time requirements for a lot of the work I do, and that leads to a lot of unwarranted anxiety. I’ll worry and procrastinate and waste time when I’d actually have more calm and relaxing time if I just did the things I need to do first and got them over with.

As I write this, I’m reminded of another article I read recently about what “being an adult” actually means. And I look at this behavior. And I think about my age. And then I just shake my head.

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