Painting the shed and other life changing events

Let’s face it, we all put things off.

We convince ourselves that it’s not the right time to …. update the CV, speak to the boss, eat more vegetables or tackle the overgrown garden. We can make a great case for procrastinating such as ‘when I’ve got more time’ or ‘when I feel more confident’ or simply ‘when I’ve eaten this cream cake’.

Like most people I can easily make a task into a chore – make it enormous and unmanageable and persuade myself that I’m not going to be able to do it right/complete it/sustain it. And so it was with my messy post-winter garden – it just seemed an impossible undertaking. Until I worked out what would get me motivated, what would inspire me to throw myself into the job…. colour and creativity.


I love painting things – not portraits or masterpieces but walls and furniture. When I’m in a painting mood, nothing is safe from a quick coat of emulsion. And as the inspiration of colour gets me going, I feel energised and ready to take on some of the more difficult jobs like weeding and clearing rubbish. The momentum kicks in and the confidence starts to rise.

So while my shed may seem like small fry in relation to some of the tasks you are facing, it could be a metaphor for getting started and boosting the motivation levels.

Here’s a few pointers:

  • don’t expect to feel great initially but have faith that momentum will kick in
  • start somewhere that feels less daunting – blue paint always fills me with joy
  • reward yourself for getting going – bright plants in pots worked for me but you’ll know what feels good for you
  • get regular support and feedback – neighbours, family and friends saying well done works well
  • take a picture and send it to me – and inspire other people

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