Today’s guest post comes from Indie Romance Author Elijana Kindel.
If you don’t know Elijana, you should. She’s a woman I consider to be a personal kick-in-the-pants life coach and friend.
She’s super dope. And hilarious!
Today Elijana hits on a topic that I need to hear right now – TIME MANAGEMENT.
She also touches on learning styles, a topic she and Author Qwillia Rain have been schooling me in. It’s a good intro to a topic that will blow your mind!
Hit it, Elijana!
I don’t have much time. Okay, that’s not exactly true. Every day I have the same 24 hours that everyone else has it’s just that I have a boat load of to-do items that MUST get done. Each day. Every day. Between being a single mom, worker bee at the day job, grad student, writer, blogger, tweeter, house cleaner, laundry aficionado, litter box cleaner-out’er, trash taker-out’er, lawn mower… argh, there’s always just so much to do!
But I get it done—oh yeah, it sucks and I don’t have much time for me, but when it’s important you find time in places you never thought were possible. Like now—I’m sitting in the pickup line at my daughter’s school scribbling notes for this blog.
So if you’ve ever wondered how someone like me who has too much to get done gets anything done… here’s my magic formula:
Brain Dump a To-Do List
Every day I dump a to-do list on a piece of paper or my “to-do” journal (Order doesn’t matter. It’s just a brain dump. Sometimes I do this multiple times a day—especially when things change… like if I find out after the first list that item #17 was postponed due to rain or whatever.
Organize and Prioritize
On a fresh sheet of paper or the same one, I number and categorize the brain dump list according to importance and “drop dead due dates”
Make an Action Plan
Consolidate items as much as possible, then create a schedule putting (if possible) repeat items (like lawn mowing or trash going out) on the same day each week (For me, I do housecleaning on Thursday nights, because Fridays are trash days. Tuesday afternoon/evenings in the summer are lawn maintenance days, because Wednesday is lawn waste pickup days.)
1-2-3… and Go!
Order the action items for the day into 1, 2, 3… then knock them out. Don’t worry if you end up skipping 4 to go do 7. Just know you have it on the list and you’ll get to it when you need to get to it. Don’t stress over getting it done or forgetting it. You’ve got it on a list and you know where your list is… so it’s good. When you do this enough, you’ll start to notice a pattern that on certain days you do certain things and magically… you become pseudo-organized.
And that’s it. My magic formula for how I don’t get overwhelmed by life and forget to feed the cat or take a shower—and yes, I do put take a shower, eat, and feed the cat on the to-do list. It makes me feel good to check the easy stuff off. Which reminds me…
If you’ve tried to manage your time and to-do list before and, in your opinion, you followed the directions but failed miserably, then consider this…
How do you measure your success? By seeing, hearing, or feeling it?
Me, personally… I get fired up when I do the to-do list item and can check it off the list. So I measure success by feeling and action (Kinesthetic).
My daughter is all about hearing it. It doesn’t matter if she sees it or does it—if I don’t tell her she did a great job or she talks about completing her list then she doesn’t get that happy on-top-of-the-world-I’m-a-diva feeling. (Auditory)
A writer friend of mine measures her success visually. So if she can’t see she completed the task, then she doesn’t get that feel good reward.(Visual)
Oh yeah, almost forgot. I don’t spend a lot of time on this list. Usually about 7 minutes—which in the grand scheme of things is longer than it takes to do a lot of menial chores (like scrub the toilet, load the laundry, load the dishwasher, put gas in the truck, check the mail, read and delete 3+ emails, read a blog—well, you get the idea. lol)
And on that note, I’m off… I have laundry to do, a blog to write, a synopsis to draft, fix dinner, along with this… that… and then some.
Take care and don’t let the time management bug overwhelm you! Keep it simple, know how you measure success, then go forth and kick some ass… off the to-do list from hell!