Peggy Collins is a leader and role model at Simple Scrapper, leaning on close-knit community, regularly accountability, and all the tricks she’s gathered over time to be more consistent with scrapbooking.
This conversation is full of sage wisdom, helpful tips, and tons of resources for your own journey to cultivate more consistency in 2022.
- Layer on Layer on Layer from Shimelle Laine
- Download the free Bucket List worksheet
- Photos I Love concept from Stacy Julian
- Gretchen Rubin’s Four Tendencies quiz
- Atomic Habits book (*)
- The Lazy Genius on House Rules
- FlyLady’s baby steps
- Decluttering at the Speed of Life book (*)
- Simple Scrapper membership
(*) Affiliate link
Peggy Collins 0:00
When I'm really connected to this hobby, I want to do it all the time. I'm connected. So I want to go do it, I go do it, so I want to be connected. And then it just keeps cycling over and over. And it's just sheer momentum. And once you get rolling, it's awesome and you can get a lot done.
Jennifer Wilson 0:18
Welcome to Scrapbook Your Way, the show that explores the breadth of ways to be a Memory Keeper today. I'm your host, Jennifer Wilson, owner of Simple Scrapper and author of The New Rules of Scrapbooking. This is episode 156. In this episode, I'm joined by Peggy Collins, a Simple Scrapper member who has long relied on community accountability and Fly Lady's baby steps to find consistency in scrapbooking and in life. Hey, Peggy, welcome to the podcast.
Peggy Collins 0:51
Thanks, excited to be here.
Jennifer Wilson 0:53
Can you introduce yourself to our audience a little bit and share a few fun things about you?
Peggy Collins 0:59
Sure, I am a paper scrapbooker. I live in the Denver Metro area. I was born and raised here. And I am single, but I am living alone right now. But my boyfriend is planning to move in this year. So we're excited about that. And things will be changing a little bit around that. I do have a full time job. I work in healthcare IT doing data integration work. So I've been doing that for about 20 years. And I pretty much scrapbook. When I have spare time. And I also like to hike, I do a lot of hiking.
Jennifer Wilson 1:37
You're one of our most loyal and active members. So I appreciate all you do to keep the energy up inside of our community.
Peggy Collins 1:46
Oh, thank you. I love it there.
Jennifer Wilson 1:49
So what's exciting you right now in memory keeping?
Peggy Collins 1:53
Well, we're inside the community, we've chosen a class to take outside of the community, we're going to do a Shimelle class altogether. It's called Layer on Layer on Layer, and it was class she did a few years ago. And we're all purchasing that and going to make our way through the content. And I'm sort of shepherding that, as I say, just helping get things organized, I'll be responsible for accountability posts and things like that. And I'm really excited about this class. I don't, it's a very different style than I typically scrapbook. And I'm thinking it will be a great stash buster. I think my paper supplies will be out of storage and in my books, which makes me really happy. And we have a really nice sized group getting ready to do it. And I think we're gonna have a lot of fun.
Jennifer Wilson 2:47
Yeah, it actually will surprise me of how much excitement has been generated by this particular topic. We had a group for it for a long time, one of the things that we do is when member, a number of members say, Hey, we're all paying for and taking this class, can you help us, can you give us a space for this. And so we created that group a long time ago. And then now visiting it, those who maybe didn't finish the first time, or maybe wanted to take it back then and then didn't can just pop in. So this is kind of a kind of almost a quirky thing that we do. But I'm so um, I don't know, I'm so excited to be able to support our community working with materials from other creators, because you know, I don't sell products, we don't develop a lot of longer classes related that like tell you what to do and guide you in design. That's not our specialty. Our specialty is accountability, productivity, and really giving you a really great experience in your hobby. And yeah, it's just such a fun, fun little twist that we can offer.
Peggy Collins 3:55
Yeah, I love that about the community that it's, that you try to make it a home where we can all do whatever we want to do in within the community of scrapbooking. And, and so much accountability. And that's the only way I get through these classes. Last year, we took Type, we did Type from Ali, which is also I think, that's many years old. And a group of us did that. And I got through every lesson and did a layout for every lesson that I don't know that I've ever done. So and that accountability made that happen and it was so much fun. And I learned so much. I'm really excited to do it again.
Jennifer Wilson 4:35
Well and I just, I also appreciate so much like on a really deep level, particularly as someone who who creates things, the degree of respect that the community places around the intellectual property of those who are creating these materials. We're sharing accountability, we're sharing, you know, the work that we create based on that inspiration just like happens elsewhere, online, but we never share the materials. We never, we really try to be careful about that. Because, yeah, for all the reasons why you should. And this is something that makes me so proud of our community as well.
Peggy Collins 5:13
Yeah, I go, I have a music background. My first career was in music. And so copyright and understanding the value of that kind of intellectual property. It's, it's really important to me. So I really appreciate everybody's sensitivity to that.
Jennifer Wilson 5:26
Yes, yes. So on the storytelling, in that purview, what is on your memory keeping Bucket List?
Peggy Collins 5:34
Oh, I just love this project, that this is a brilliant brainchild of yours I've done I think almost 20 of these at this point, are usually related either to myself, I tend to go back into my childhood or early adulthood. Or they're usually about either my parents individually or something about them as a couple. So the one that bubble is bubbling up right now was about my dad. He worked for the Rio Grande railroad, and he was in accounting, and there was a huge landslide in Utah in the early 80s. And it was it completely buried the train line, one of the key train lines for their railroad went right through there, it actually wound up blocking a river and dry, of completely flooding the town of Thistle, they, there that town is gone, it's underwater.
Jennifer Wilson 6:32
Peggy Collins 6:32
Yeah, it was amazing. So he was deployed out to do the accounting for the efforts to reroute the tracks around the landslide. And they would take him to work every day by helicopter, because there were no way, there was no way to get there, around this landslide and things. And he talked about that for years. And so I've come across an envelope of pictures, they're not great pictures, but there, there are pictures. And so I'm hoping to do something with those this year, in some fashion to kind of honor that. I think it was a key career moment for him. He eventually became the paymaster for the railroad. And I think this was one of those key moments where he kind of proved his mettle and, and got promoted as a result.
Jennifer Wilson 7:16
That's such a cool story. And, you know, when you can attach a personal story to something that was likely in the news, right, something big that happens. That's just it's yeah, it's so fun.
Peggy Collins 7:30
Yeah, I think it'll be a really neat thing to have in my books.
Jennifer Wilson 7:34
For sure. So I really wanted to have you on today to talk about consistency. This is the final episode in our More in 2022 series. And that's, this is something that members tell us all the time, I just want to create consistently.
Peggy Collins 7:50
Jennifer Wilson 7:51
And I, you know, you have been very open with your own struggles and creating consistency, consistently, as well as sharing all of the ways that like just very being very public about the ways that you reach out for it and saying, Hey, I need accountability here. Can you help me with this? And I just think you're a great role model for our community because of the way that you model that.
Peggy Collins 8:19
Oh, thank you.
Jennifer Wilson 8:21
So can you start by telling us a little bit about just some of your top interests and priorities in scrapbooking, just so we can have context?
Peggy Collins 8:28
Yeah, for sure. So like I mentioned, I'm nearly 100% paper scrapbooking, I do a little bit of hybrid when I need a longer, bigger story, just because I can get more words in typewritten. But generally, you'll find that I'm almost 100% paper. And I started back in the late 90s with Creative Memories. The way that so many of us started so I still do 12 by 12 single page or double page layouts, that's that's my primary love. I guess if left to my own devices, that's all I would probably ever do. I do use six by eight for a few specific things. I do some travel scrapbooking that way because it goes a little bit faster for me, I can kind of combine layouts and pockets and so I can kind of crank through some of those trail travel stories a little bit faster. And then I have a couple eight by eight albums that have kind of special themes. One of them is a photos I love something that Stacy Julian recommends that has enlargements of a very select group of photos that are really special to me. And then one that talks about service volunteer efforts that I do through the years. I just document those in that eight by eight and a rare mini I'll occasionally crank out a mini but not super often. So in terms of what I'm doing these days, so in September of last year, kind of Fall Retreat, fall Refresh Retreat, I realized that I was not going to hit my goal of projects completed for last year. And I was very frustrated, I thought I had set a goal that was ridiculously doable. And I wasn't it, it was clear that even with four months to go, there was no way I was gonna get it done. And I was really frustrated by that. I had been for the couple months before that, looking in every nook and cranny to try and find more time to see if I could get this stuff done. And it was just kind of throwing me to a kind of a negative place. And I decided that maybe the right thing to do was to count time instead of count projects. So I decided then that for the rest of the year, I was going to try to do six hours a week of scrapbooking. And so I set out to do that. And I was counting all sorts of things I was counting YouTube viewing and I was I was doing some things around the periphery of scrapbooking to to what I quote unquote, count. So at the end of the year, I decided that was working great, it really was it, it immediately removed all of that negative nonsense going on about oh, you're this takes too long. And this is you're so slow, and all of this negative nonsense that I had going on in my head. And so that was awesome. And so I decided coming into 2022, I was going to cut the goal to four hours because I was going to cut out all of that peripheral stuff. So now four hours a week, pretty much it has to be photo or memorabilia management, actual scrapbooking, course content, I will count that. And then certain things within the community, not my day to day, typing in the forum and all that kind of stuff. But things like some of the retreat stuff last week, I counted some of that towards that time. And so the goal is to do an average of four hours a week over the course of the year. And we'll see how that goes project wise. I'm going to try and keep a travel project rolling all year. And my everyday life kind of project this year is going to be a Month In Review in six by eight in a Simple Stories flip album, and I already did foundation pages and all sorts of stuff like that. So I'm hoping that's kind of a plug and play, spend a couple hours on it a month, and I'll have kind of an everyday life project.
Jennifer Wilson 12:30
Nice. I love how clear your scope is. And this this mental reframe around time versus projects is just huge. I mean, that's, it's, I would dare I call it revolutionary way to think about your scrapbooking goals. Because we can't always control how long something takes. But we can control our investment of time and energy.
Peggy Collins 12:54
Yeah, I, I'm clearly terrible at predicting how long something's going to take in scrapbooking. And it's, it's weird because I, I'm pretty good at that in other arenas, but not with creativity. It just, it doesn't. I just can't predict how long it's gonna take. And then I get frustrated because I thought, oh, I should be able to get this done in X time. Why I think that I'm not even sure. But then I find myself kind of it's just, it's supposed to be fun. And it's supposed to be a hobby. And so if I'm doing anything, I don't have kids and I don't have necessarily I'm not doing this for legacy per se. So there's not really like what what's the deal with the deadline Peg? It's just, you know, just scrapbook it'll be fine. Whatever you do is more than nothing, and it'll be fine. So it's working much better. Yeah.
Jennifer Wilson 13:47
Yes, I think sometimes it depends on how you're feeling in a day like you could take a whether it's a single layout, a project, and one day it could take you 40 minutes and the next day could take you two and a half hours. It just depends I think there's so much like external factors as well that influence how long something takes and I think that's why we can't estimate is because it's it's variable, we're human you know, surprise, surprise, we are not predictable.
Peggy Collins 14:16
Not a machine. The way that works. Yeah, and I also found myself like choosing to do the simple, more simple thing because I didn't have time to do, I don't have time to do that more complex creative idea I have. I have this list of things I got to get done. I'm like That's insane. That's crazy. That's that's not the right way to approach this, right. The the right way to approach it is to make what you want to make and enjoy yourself and and not make it a job. And for me for whatever reason, lining up a set of things to be done in a period of time that was turning into a job so I like this better.
Jennifer Wilson 14:19
Yes, me too. I love it for you. And I love that it's kind of bubbled over and others in our community are adopting the same, same approach.
Peggy Collins 15:09
Jennifer Wilson 15:11
So you've said that our community kind of brought your scrapbooking back to life? What were some of the struggles that you had had before that, that made you even wonder if your hobby was revivable?
Peggy Collins 15:24
Yeah, so around. Like I said, I started with Creative Memories. And I did about 15 years worth of a very much chronological, very much event driven scrapbooking, and I love those books. But I was tired of making them. My nieces were young during those 15 years, and they feature heavily in the scrapbooks. And I love watching them grow in that, those scrapbooks. It's a that's a wonderful thing about chronological scrapbooks. You can see kids kind of progressing and doing those things. And so I had them and some other kids in my life and and they had grown up, and were not doing the same. They weren't nearly as interested in Aunty Peggy photographing every moment of their lives.
Jennifer Wilson 16:18
Peggy Collins 16:18
And so they that had kind of died off. And I also so I was just done. I just couldn't face another Easter honestly, if scrapbook, another Easter Sunday, I was going to lose my mind. So I was just putting it off, because I didn't know what else to do. And so I, I was in Big Picture Classes at that point. And Stacy did Photo Freedom, or whatever she was calling it at that point. And, and I took the class and she persuaded me that Library of Memories was the way to go. So I started making, I started with one album, I started making single pages as I was inspired. I didn't have you know, I didn't set up the whole thing. I thought, Okay, let's see how this goes. And I started to make pages. And that was going okay, I, my in person community had kind of come unhinged, like I didn't have the group that I would go scrapbook with. Archivers had closed and so there wasn't a place to go to crop and my closest friends that were scrapbookers weren't scrapbooking anymore. My parents and I used to scrapbook together and they were gone. So that in person piece was totally off the rails. And then Big Picture sold. And I didn't really, the subscription model didn't really float my boat. And so I was struggling, I had a lot of unfinished projects that were really frustrating to me. I didn't know what to do to get them across the finish line. And that just made me not go to my space. Just I just won't go because I don't know what to do with that project that I started. So that was it was really frustrating. And I knew I, like the creativity and I was making rubber, I was doing rubber stamping and things like that. But I was not making very much progress on scrapbooking.
Jennifer Wilson 18:11
Well, I think that sometimes, like when you're doing stamping and things that's that's maybe that's what you needed at the time. And go through these phases in our lives where maybe we need something a little bit different so that we can have the breather to figure out what's next for that other thing.
Peggy Collins 18:28
Yeah, I think I understood kind of where I was going with the scrapbooking, but I, I kept trying to make these mini albums and things that were, I don't know, that I thought, you know, you saw on Pinterest and you thought you could make and then they weren't really turning out the way you liked. And it didn't take a whole lot to knock me off my game because I just didn't have, I'm really dependent on the external accountability pieces. And I had none of that going on. Like nobody was waiting to see what I did with this stuff. Nobody, you know, I don't didn't live with anybody. And so nobody was around to say, Hey, that looks really great. And my closest friends weren't doing it anymore. And so yeah, I was I was definitely struggling.
Jennifer Wilson 19:12
And so when you think about comparing that time to today, what does that shift look like?
Peggy Collins 19:19
Yeah, so I was never a Facebook user. But when so when you moved the community out of Facebook and into Mighty Networks, I was there like right away. It's like, well, thank god, somebody starting something I can actually get to. Because I had had, you and I have talked, we were both in a different kind of forum in the early 2000s together. And I had had so much success in that forum. I loved that community and loved how that all worked. It was awesome for me. And so I was just like, Oh, I gotta go see, I didn't know. I know at that point that we'd been in this other community together. I didn't put two and two together but I'm just like, Oh, if I can get that back again for scrapbooking that would be so amazing. And so I was, I hopped right in and immediately got what I needed. So the accountability pieces were there, the community, you could share a post, you could share a layout. And in minutes, there was somebody saying, Hey, that looks great. I love how you did this or whatever. That was super, that was just a excellent, positive reinforcement cycle for me. And then the ability for me to really participate at this level where not only am I taking advantage of somebody else looking for or offering accountability, but I could be the one that could drive that because that really feeds. I feel bad sometimes that I need so much accountability from other people. It's so it feels so good to be able to be the one that helps other people get that accountability. And then I just get it naturally by the fact that I participate in whatever I suggest. So it kind of makes me feel better that I can help and help other people. And it just really, all of my key success tools are tied up in what we're doing at Simple Scrapper. So I immediately started getting stuff done.
Jennifer Wilson 21:17
Yes, obviously, no, I do 100%. And I've had so many members say that it kind of did that it has recaptured the the true friendship and family feeling of forums from back in the day. So like the one you mentioned that we were part of which was not even in scrapbooking. But there were so many even other scrapbooking forums where there was just so much of that day to day closeness that Facebook doesn't seem to replicate. There's a lot of volume on Facebook in terms of people asking questions like, which stamp platform should you buy, but there's just not the same level of personal encouragement and accountability. And that's, that's really I think, what makes the difference for us.
Peggy Collins 22:04
Yeah, and I'm not sure I like I said, I've never been a Facebook user, but I think I would be reticent, some of the stuff I share in our community I would not be putting, that's not the that's not a safe place. But we're what we've created is a safe place. And we feel like we could, I there's not very much there that I wouldn't feel comfortable sharing. Just because we know each other and we know that that's it's safe there. There's no risk.
Jennifer Wilson 22:35
Well you mentioned that your leadership as part of your accountability strategy. And so many of our crop hosts have shared that with other members saying, if you want the ultimate accountability, sign up to host a crop because you're on the calendar. And people are gonna be waiting for you. So it really worked that way too.
Peggy Collins 22:56
And it's beautiful, because it's not hard. It's it's you just show up and do the same thing that you were gonna do anyway. It's not like it's a big lift or anything, but it's it's amazingly, accountability why, accountability wise, you can't beat it.
Jennifer Wilson 23:12
Yes, yes. So you've had particular success in assigning really clear objectives such as photo management or specific projects, to specific crop times, like you're matching things up? Why do you think this is so effective? And what happens when you think we're less clear and specific about what we're gonna do when?
Peggy Collins 23:33
Yeah, for me, at least I really struggled to start or engage if I don't know at least some degree of what it is I'm going to do. I think that's probably a little bit of remainders of perfectionism that I've been fighting for decades now. That if I don't kind of have a path, it's not that I have to know every single step and but if I know that oh, okay, this is this is where to start. Like start here. I have much more success getting to the to the table or to the computer and once I'm there I'm fine. The the mind games all seem to go away once I get rolling. But to get myself to the desk, I really have to have some degree of of starting spot. And then also the other thing that I think for me is this idea of in enough cushion, which is something Stacy talks about. A lot of people talk about this with, Stacy particularly talks about Enough Quotient. And this idea that I you know, you could photo, you could do photo management as a full time thing, right? This could that could be your hobby. There's just so much that you can could should do with photos. It's not my favorite thing. If I never had to do photo management again. I'd be really happy scrapbooker so I don't want to do that, a ton of that. But I do want to keep it moving. And so having that one hour a week that we've sort of designated and that was like a total spur of the moment, Hey, maybe I should do this on Mondays, you guys want to do this with me. And now there's this big group that really, that's Monday nights, that's when we all do our photos. I can leave Monday night and go, Okay, I worked on my photos this week, I don't have to work on my photos. I can now go to this next thing, right. And so I think if you some people like to work on one single thing until it's done. I'm not that person really in any place in my life. So it's not surprising that this isn't me either in scrapbooking, so to be able to give myself the permission to say, Okay, you did some of that. And now you can come do some of this. And then the next thing you could do some of that, so it's it really helps to feed my interest, my desire for variety, right? I like a lot of variety. So...
Jennifer Wilson 25:59
Yes. Me too.
Peggy Collins 26:03
So I think if you're, if you if you work that way, and you pick something and you work at it, you work out until it's done, then you probably know that about yourself. You probably do that in a lot of places. But I don't think that's most of us. I think most of us have at least some part of this, that isn't their very favorite thing to do. And if that's the thing that needs to be done for weeks on end, I think I'm going to go look for a new hobby, right? Like that's...
Jennifer Wilson 26:32
Peggy Collins 26:33
A very easy way to derail yourself. I often, sometimes somebody will come in, especially somebody new or somebody that's been away from scrapbooking, and they'll be like, Okay, I have to get my all my stuff organized. And I'm like, that can take a really long time, depending on how much stuff you have. It can be very discouraging to just do that for weeks on end. So I often encourage people like Oh, might want to do a little of both right? Do absolutely do that, move that forward. But maybe think about whether that's going to really serve you to do that non stop for a long time. It can be very difficult to keep that up.
Jennifer Wilson 27:17
Well, I think as you mentioned that, by placing it on this particular spot in time, it gives you that mental freedom to then move on to something else. And I think that's so important, so that we know we can trust ourselves that we will get back to this. It like it takes off that burden of Oh, well. I should blah, blah, blah. Should manage my photos. I should organize the pile of junk. Yes, yeah, you probably should. But we can't do that all the time, as you mentioned, so let's just put it here. Set it off to the side. We know it's safe. We won't forget it. It's on the calendar. And...
Peggy Collins 27:53
It's on Trello, it's where ever...
Jennifer Wilson 27:53
Yeah, and then we can have fun the rest of the time.
Peggy Collins 27:59
Exactly. Can't all be, yeah. And I think, again, to come back to that perfection, I think a lot of us suffer from perfectionism. Right? So the the idea, we get your space perfect. So then you could make something. Well, probably not a perfect space. And it doesn't have to be perfect to make something right. Like, that's a false dichotomy. This has to be perfect to be able to do this. It's just, it has to be functional, right? I think I've heard you say, like, clear a spot on your desk big enough to be able to work in it and go for it. Like, make something then and then yeah, maybe pick up. And I tried to do you know, pick up as I'm cleaning up, I try to do 10 minutes as I'm finishing stuff up so that I don't leave myself in a complete disaster. But I also don't spend hours and hours organizing stuff, just get it organized enough, I can find stuff and move on. Start making stuff.
Jennifer Wilson 28:57
Yes, I like the concentric circle approach. And I did this more in my old space because it was really tiny, but you clear off, you know, 13 by 13 inches so you can make a page. And then when it's time to put things away, you clear off, you know, 14 or 15 inches and you just slowly like expand the space that you have. But know that every time you create you'll pick up a little bit more and put one more thing away. And it really, it really helps to make it feel more doable and not as a barrier to your creativity.
Peggy Collins 29:30
Yeah, and I also think sometimes people want to just totally go through everything and Stash Bash like actually purge stuff and I personally, I my decision fatigue sets in very quickly. Very quickly, like 10 items in I'm like already like I don't know what to do. I, I'm going upstairs. Like I so for me I have to do that kind of thing in small pieces because otherwise, I just wind up keeping everything because on item number 10. I'm paralyzed and no not doing anything. So...
Jennifer Wilson 30:08
Yes. You, you helped me through a difficult guestroom purge.
Peggy Collins 30:14
Jennifer Wilson 30:16
I'm very happy to say that clutter has not returned.
Peggy Collins 30:19
Jennifer Wilson 30:20
But I mean, there's there's other clutter in there. Now, most of it from my office closet,w hile Emily was doing school in there.
Peggy Collins 30:28
Jennifer Wilson 30:28
But but that like, yeah, that decision fatigue, it's so fast. So I had to do in really small spurts. Because I would get so frustrated really quickly. And I just have to recognize that about myself and use all the tools and people at my disposal to be able to make that happen.
Peggy Collins 30:48
Jennifer Wilson 30:50
So So kind of digging more into consistency. And what that looks like, you know, this is something that not only applies to our scrapbooking, but a lot of different things in life that we want to be consistent with. Are you someone who finds consistency easy or difficult? It's kind of a loaded question.
Peggy Collins 31:13
Well, historically, it was super difficult for me. That that's been the early part of my life was this was always a challenge. I couldn't get an exercise habit going. I was a violinist all the way. That's my first career was music education, and I got a music degree. And I always struggled to practice consistently, always, it was a fight with my mother, it was a fight with myself all the time. So it's really only in the last few years that I've really been able to pick up some of these, to be able to more easily gain consistency. And really, very much in the last five to seven years, has it really started to click for me a little bit. It's, it can be very challenging. And if I don't want to do it, it a lot of times it's been around shoulds. And shoulds really don't work for me. Like, okay, I don't want to do that. You can tell me I should but I really don't want to do that. So it's definitely a challenge.
Jennifer Wilson 32:23
So I just I'm always so fascinated by the personality differences that govern this because I think the there's those of us that identify with what you just said and struggle with consistency. And then you see others who have seemingly little challenge. They just say, I'm gonna do this, and they do it.
Peggy Collins 32:41
Jennifer Wilson 32:42
So I'm just curious if like, if you've, you know, as you observe others and practices yourself Is there any kind of insight into why this is? Or is it? Is it just the uniqueness of people?
Peggy Collins 32:59
I do think it's a lot about personality. I think for a long time I thought it was a character flaw and that's not true. I really deeply believe that's not true. I thought it was like I just was not doing the right things. I think that's the piece that's come together in the last five to seven years like oh, yeah, this is this is the way you approach things and so you've got to work, work your tools. I do think there's, for me at least, that I have a big desire, we talked about this already, a desire for variety, right. I I think it'd be really easy to eat right if I only cared if I ate five different things a week but I don't only want to. I want to eat a lot of different things and so I want to do a lot of different projects, right. All these different things that that need or desire for variety really makes consistency hard, not hard, but challenging. That it's part of the challenge of getting the variety is also getting the consistency that goes along with it. So I think that's a piece I think, Gretchen Rubin, I'm I'm as big a fan if not bigger as Kim is of Gretchen Rubin. I, she nailed the tendencies when I look around my, my certainly myself what just came off the page I was just screaming Oh that's why! That's absolutely you, you are an obliger through and through. That I even as I look around in my community myself in our scrapper community, there's it's becomes very obvious whose tendency is who's. And what I really liked about what she says is she she fully recognizes their strengths and weaknesses of all of them. Like find myself occasionally very jealous of upholders and then I think but I don't want to be that stringent, right. I don't want to be that tied to, tied down too. She'd like I think part of that I'm sure my personality. But that's very unattractive to me, that inflexibility that can come up for upholders. So we all have the piece. There's goods and bad's of both, all of those different tendencies. And I've had to come to appreciate that and to learn the right tools, to use knowing my own personality. So I think that's a piece of it. And to beat the dead horse, the perfectionism, I think bites a lot of us for these kinds of consistencies. Because if you miss one, I mean, when I was earlier in my life I was, if I missed once, then oh, well burn it down. I guess that's never gonna work. Right? You missed one. Yeah, the whole thing is over, it's ruined. Like you get like, it's, you know, it's not great. It's not a good thing. But that definitely has derailed me a lot in my life, as well for kind of picking up these things and being consistent with them.
Jennifer Wilson 35:59
I have definitely really been working on my perfectionism and some of the things that I thought, you know, like, I'm cool with that. Like, I know this about myself, but I've moved past it. And then when you really like, you really peel it apart, you're like, oh, no, that's still really plays a very big role.
Peggy Collins 36:17
There it is again.
Jennifer Wilson 36:18
Yeah, you need to really face this more directly. And so I've really been focusing on, you know, cuz streaks don't work for me, because I miss one. And then it's like, oh, gosh, you know, like, now I'm just a loser. And I want to get just, it's so hard. But so hard. Yeah. If I focus on, what is next, can I get back on? Can I return to whatever it is, and making that the goal rather than a perfect line of dots or whatever? That, can I get back to it. And that has been so empowering and exciting to know that I have that opportunity to choose again, yes, I get another chance every single time to then make that decision. Yes.
Peggy Collins 37:05
We're not making very many final decisions. Really. There's not all that many of them in life, and you're not making them day to day usually. So yeah...
Jennifer Wilson 37:14
Especially not in our scrapbooking.
Peggy Collins 37:16
It's definitely not in scrapbooking. It's very few life and death decisions. No crying in baseball, not very made life decisions and discovering for sure.
Jennifer Wilson 37:31
So we've already talked about how hard you lean into accountability. But what are the strategies that you really rely on to find this consistency? If you had to summarize those?
Peggy Collins 37:42
Yeah, I think some of it, we read Atomic Habits last year in the community again, actually, I think that was the second time I'd read it. Not every, I'm the oddball that not everything he says resonates with me. But there are a couple things that have been working really well for me recently. Starting small goes way back. I've been trying that since way, clear back to Fly Lady who was like just set the timer for 15 minutes, just do 15 minutes, just just just that much. So starting small really works well for me, if I'm having trouble getting, you know, just do a little bit, don't don't try to do it all. And then his idea of having kind of this bare minimum atomic habit, right, this little tiny part of the habit. So that's hard for me, I really don't want to say that five squats count, but five squats count. So I've tried to make sure that I do at least that much really kind of helps me out. I do a lot of planning. There's no way around that if there's a lot of thinking about what I'm going to do and when I'm going to do it and all of those kinds of things. And then that allows me to feed that to accountability buddy, buddies. Whether that's real life, my coach, the team, the community at Simple Scrapper. I, I'm planning, reporting the plan, reporting back what happened. And that's really important. Sometimes it's just sheer momentum. And that's when I'm really connected to this hobby. I want to do it all the time. Like I don't want to go to my job, I want to do it so much. So I think that that's a very, that's an awesome virtuous cycle that I'm connected. So I want to go do it, I go do it. So I want to be connected and then it just keeps cycling over and over and it's just sheer momentum. And once you get rolling, it's awesome and you can get a lot a lot done. And then just monitoring both the accountability that we've talked about as well as I personally track to get those four hours a week. I actually have four hours scheduled a week regularly with some degree of accountability and I track those weekly scheduled times on a whiteboard in my office. Not so much to keep track and make sure that I did them but more so that I can see if things start to go off the rails. Or that time's not working or something I want there to be visibility into that so that I can make an adjustment sooner rather than later. And so, anything, whatever I monitor usually gets done. So that helps as well.
Jennifer Wilson 40:24
Yeah, I love to be able to like see trends. So as you said, that time is suddenly not working, because things are always going to be shifting in our lives. And something that works well right now might not work in the future, you know, something might change. And I think it's important to be adaptable to those changes and know okay, here's my goal, how do I refit this into the circumstances I have now?
Peggy Collins 40:50
Yeah, I think my partner's gonna move in in a couple months. And I don't know if all this weekday time that I have to myself is going to work. We, he was here during the pandemic. But that was different, even. It was different, but the same, right? Like we had nothing else to do. So of course, I could go to my desk, because we were together all the time. I don't know how that's gonna look when we're actually in more typical life. But yeah, I want to be able to see that sooner rather than later. Because I want to make a course correction if something's not going right, because this is it's a high priority for me, so...
Jennifer Wilson 41:25
Well, and the point that you mentioned about the more you stay connected to it, the more momentum you have. And I think that connects back to the idea of starting small, it doesn't have to be a huge connection to stay connected, it could be checking into the community, watching five minutes of a video, like anything that you could do to just touch it. Every day helps you think about it more when you're doing other things and get you back to the table faster.
Peggy Collins 41:56
Absolutely. Yeah, I think it doesn't have to be a lot, for me anyway. I keep, that keeps me energized and thinking about it and, and ready to go. So that's been really good for that's, that's one of the things that community gives me right. Is i It's the first place I go in the morning, I gotta go see who responded late at night last night. So it's definitely helped me a lot.
Jennifer Wilson 42:26
For sure. So I wanted to actually tackle the idea of organization a little bit. This is our next creative journey coming up. So this is the final episode of one series. And then all the upcoming podcast episodes are on various aspects of organization. And with these changes in your cohabitation circumstances, I'm curious how that will impact your creative workspace. And what are some of the things that you're doing now and what we'll be doing in the future?
Peggy Collins 42:55
Yeah, so we just had, one of the things we're going to do is set up a space. I've always had my craft space down in the basement in this house. But the rest of the base, it's a big family room, my craft space was taking about a third of it. And then the rest of the room was kind of my treadmill and whatever stuff I didn't know what to do with. So we're going to create a an actual family room space down there, with the additional furniture and whatnot. And so we wanted to put flooring and painting in which meant my craft space had to be completely destroyed, just broken down and gotten out of there so that they could do their work. So I've just spent actually last weekend during the Refresh Retreat, putting it back together again. So we changed the cabinetry a little bit, I pulled a piece of cabinetry out and then I'm replacing it with some IKEA pieces that will hopefully at least replace the storage I lost. Or actually it looks like it's going to be just a bit more storage. So that's going well. And I'm hoping that that will allow, possibly he'll, he'll come down he'll do his thing over in the family room, read or watch TV or whatever. And then I'll be able to be in my craft space a little bit when we're spending time together and things like that. And part of that is I'm going to get a second workspace out of the deal. So I'm going to get a workbench from IKEA. That will be a standing workspace, which I've been wanting to do because of activity and health reasons. I want to be a little bit more on my feet when I can and so that it will also give me a second space. So one of the things I'm looking at is a house rule of a la Lazy Genius, to always have one of the two workspaces. So either the seated workspace I've always had or this standing workspace always clear and ready for to work at. I don't always put everything away when I'm in the middle of something on my workspace, so I won't just put stuff away for the sake of putting it away every time if I know that's the thing I'm coming back to next time. I'll leave it, is one of the glories of having a dedicated craft space to me, so you can leave that big mess all over the desk. But it does mean that I can't spontaneously pick something up. And I'm very interested in maybe doing some art journaling, or some bookbinding and things this year. And I'm hoping that having that, uh, that extra workspace that's always available will allow me to more spontaneously go that direction. If I've done my four hours for the week, I'm on target for scrapbooking kind of stuff, I can pivot to do some other creative things that I'm interested in doing. And I'm hoping that that workspace will allow me to do that.
Jennifer Wilson 45:47
I really like that rule. I like that. It gives you permission to not be perfectionist about it and clean everything up. But also some structure and boundaries. So that there's always an opportunity to jump in by having that clear space. So yeah, a fun, a fun mental trick to use.
Peggy Collins 46:07
We'll see how that goes. Yeah. Speaking of consistency issues, but yeah, I think I think that'll work. And then the other thing is the container concept. I know the community read Decluttering At The Speed Of Life, and her one of her concepts is a container concept. So I'm pretty clutter blind. But my partner is not. So I'm trying very hard to get myself to get whatever space I set up, this is it, I got it. This is it. I can't be overflowing my container all the time anymore. It was never a problem. When I lived here alone, it was my space. And I could do as I saw fit, but I need to be a little bit more sensitive to that on his behalf. So that's going to be a focus too as I move, as we move forward into this new space and organization.
Jennifer Wilson 46:59
Yeah, well, it sounds like a fun and exciting change. Of course, there'll be you know, core, you know, little quirks along the road. I'm excited for you. And yeah, I just I'm just so happy that you have found so much that works for you in your scrapbooking and in your life and that you get to share some of that with us inside the community.
Peggy Collins 47:19
Yeah, I'm so happy. It's great.
Jennifer Wilson 47:23
Well, thank you so much for spending time with me today and to all of our listeners, please remember that you have permission to Scrapbook Your Way. Are you ready to start implementing the great ideas you hear on the podcast? The Simple Scrapper membership offers a welcoming space to connect with fellow Memory Keepers, and find that creative accountability you've been craving. Visit simple scrapper.com/membership to learn more and join our community. It's the best it's ever been.
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It was kind of cool to hear Peggy talk about the flooding of Thistle in Utah. I live in Spanish Fork, which is located at the mouth of the canyon that used to lead Thistle. You can still see homes and other buildings there under water, their roofs just visible. It’s really sad.