Maintenance: almost everything in this world requires it. Roads, bridges, buildings, equipment, cars and even your health! Yet we have a tendency to loathe anything that has to do with maintenance.


This article is intended to help you in two ways: The first section will expose the “shudder”factor we subconsciously associate with maintenance, and give you fun ways to accomplish your maintenance goals. The second section will give you practical tips for maintaining your beautiful timbers!

Part I

1. Sooo… Why does the mind revolt at the thought of maintenance?

Is it because it seems like boring drudgery that never ends? Does it feel like a non-accomplishment? Or maybe it is the lack of urgency… no major negative or positive consequences if it waits another day? Does it feel like lost time? Or is it simply because it is another task you must be responsible for?

One thing is certain: ownership means responsibility and maintenance.

Let me illustrate why you are lucky to have the hassle of maintenance.

Last summer when my son and I toured Tallin, the beautiful capital city of Estonia, a Finnish friend and guide talked about the huge transformation which had recently taken place. In 1998, Estonia gained independence from Soviet rule. Roads were crummy, houses were dilapidated, and everything was in a state of disrepair.

Under Soviet rule, an energetic soul who would fix and spruce up his home might find himself and his family ordered to move their belongings to a different location. Ahigher official could then enjoy the fruits of someone else’s labor. Only a fool would slave away just to wind up empty-handed! So the next time you “have to” do any of the ownership responsibilities which are a part of our lives… BE THANKFUL!Here are a few additional ways to take the pain out of maintenance:

Maintaining timbers 31)Find your “shudder” factor. If you can isolate the core reason you hate maintenance, you then have the opportunity to change your mindset. For example, if you perceive maintenance as a boring task, you can reframe it as accomplishing something important.

2. Save and delegate.

Suppose you were to save a small amount from each paycheck toward future maintenance items. Would it be easier for you to simply hire out those maintenance tasks without feeling like you should do it and save the money?3) Make it a social occasion. Pool your efforts with a few friends. As a group, you could knock out a bunch of work at your friend’s house one day and yours the next. You will probably notice higher productivity due to increased focus and the absence of procrastination. You may also be able to play to one another’s strengths. If for example, you enjoy yard work and your friend enjoys handyman repairs, you both can focus on things you like and things at which you are more proficient.

Bert Sarkkinen – Author

Initiating the Vision
Depicting the Vision
Constructing the Vision