First of all, a diva doesn’t whine. Ever. Whatever is to be done is her choice; the particular chore might not be to her liking, but a diva never does anything she doesn’t want to do. Hence she may not want to sand the living room floor, but she doesn’t want carpeting; she doesn’t want to write this paper, but she wants a college degree; she doesn’t want to get her eyebrows waxed, but she wants to look fierce.
) Make a plan, a commitment and stick to it. Only trolls live with half-painted living rooms for three months.
) Get the right accessories, if you are cleaning the oven, you will need a fetching hair scarf and good music playing. If you are packing, get tissue paper in your favorite color to wrap your favorite items in.
) If possible, start with an easy part. This will give you a feeling of accomplishment that will help carry you through. If sorting your closet, don’t start with the dresses, start with the socks and nightgowns.
) Buy Girl Scout cookies in the spring and freeze them – eat only during difficult undertakings. Cookie Monster was on to something.
) If you need help motivating, watch older, cheesy inspirational movies: Chariots of Fire, Moonstruck, Strictly Ballroom, etc.
) Remember some days you are the windshield and some days you are the bug.
) If you ask for help, you MUST, MUST, MUST re-pay with help – getting pizza for those who help you tile the bathroom is not sufficient. Babysitting their monster child for five hours is sufficient.
) With large projects – color code. Diva with four small children gave them each a color: red, green, blue and yellow for coat, backpack, mittens, boots, etc. Diva with four comprehensive exam topics gave each subject a color so she could tell at a glance what article/ file folder had what info. Diva moving house gave each room a color – large piece of paper in that color taped to the wall and color scribbled on all boxes with magic marker so all the movers out the right boxes in right room.
) Take occasional breaks to remind yourself why you are doing this project. Have a picture of evil ex-husband on your desk to motivate you while working on your resume.
) During a stressful time, you will have various unpleasant manifestations of your strain: talking to yourself, arguing with yourself, trying to put your glasses on when they are already on your nose, opening the fridge to find you put your dirty dishes on the middle shelf, finding books in the bathtub and half drunk cups of coffee in your underwear drawer. Don’t panic.
) Have something planned for those “I can’t do this” moments. You can’t prevent them, they will happen, but get a strategy in place: who to call, where to go, the pint of hazelnut/ coffee/ chocolate heaven in the freezer, Gilbert and Sullivan CD: “We have missed our opportunity of escaping with impunity,” “Rising early in the morning,” “Faint heart never won fair maiden.”
) Keep close to you the mementos of successful previous battles. Frame the letter announcing your last pay raise, children’s report cards, mug shot of slimy ex-friend, thank you cards, postcards you bought on vacation.