People often ask me how I get it all done. That question stuns me because I never feel it’s all done. I definitely don’t get as much accomplished as I used to, before my Fall season of life.
Are you efficiency-challenged? Are you task-oriented but seem to twirl your way from one incomplete project to another?
These are some things I do (or did during my curtain business years) to make the most efficient use of my time – nothing new or earth shattering. But, we sometimes need reminders of age-old techniques for efficiency.
Lump projects together or combine similar steps. For example, when you have painting projects, gather everything to be painted a like color and paint them at the same time.
Here is a collection of items I painted earlier this summer all at the same time – some things for immediate posts and some for later.
Tackle “thinking-required” tasks when your brain is fresh and physically taxing projects when you have the most energy.
What time of day are you at your peek mentally? When is your physical energy peek?
Since I’m a morning person, I do things that require the most brain power during early hours. Late mornings and afternoons are spent on things requiring more physical energy, like doing the projects in my blog posts. After dinner (when my brain is approaching complete shut-down), I edit pictures or catch up on emails.
I don’t have a completely strict schedule, of course. For example, physical outdoor work during the heat of summer must be done in the mornings rather than afternoons.
Keep a task list, and keep it updated. Sometimes it’s necessary to make more than one list, separating by project type.
Work in “location zones”. You may remember I’ve been known to paint furniture in our kitchen – and usually several things at once. Because I spent many hours cooking for our family, the kitchen was my painting zone. (My family probably wanted to strangle me for that!)
With the recent Project Studio completion, my new painting zone is there. (Is that HH I hear cheering?)
If a large project seems overwhelming, break it down into manageable steps. Think of each step as an individual project.
Chip away one step at a time in the time allotments you can devote to it – 30 minutes here, 15 minutes there. You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment each time you complete a step, which serves as motivation to get on with the next step soon. You’ll finish the whole project sooner than expected. (The littles total a lot, y’all.)
Limit interruptions and manage distractions. Turn off your phone, silence it, turn off text and email notifications, or any other way you can manage the distractions of electronics.
Notify family members you are heading into “project zone” and to allow you that uninterrupted time if possible.
Mommy (or Grandmommy) needs to work for a while. Come and be with me, but bring some puzzles or games to play so you won’t get bored while I work. When I’m done, we’ll have some “me and you together time”.
(Kiss and smile.)
How do you make the most efficient use of your time? Please share your tips in the comments section. I’d love that!