Back when I worked outside the home, I was pretty good at time management. I felt stressed a lot of the time, don’t get me wrong, but for the most part I managed to get it all done – the cooking, the cleaning, the shopping, the working, and the kids to all the right places at all the right times. Things are much different now. Partly because I am not able to physically do all the things I used to do, but also because I ‘seem’ to have all the time in the world to get things done. What I’ve found is that this seemingly endless supply of time to get things done leads to very little actually being accomplished.
I joke that I have ADD. I don’t, and I don’t mean to make light of anyone who does, but here is an example of what happens: I get up and get the kids off to school. I sit down with my To-Do List and start marking things off (because this keeps me focused and makes sure I get done what I need to get done). While I’m going through emails, I find an interesting blog post so I go read it. Then I think, I’ll check Facebook since I’m already piddling online. Then, I need a fresh coffee – that’ll help me regain my focus. Then I open Photoshop to get started on those design concepts I haven’t been able to nail down yet. Then, I remember it’s been 5 days since I visited Triberr and I really ought to do that (I manage 3 social media accounts). While I’m doing that, I think of something I needed to add to the mock up site for a client, so I go and do that. Now, it’s 11:30 and I’m hungry, so it’s time to pause for lunch.
I’ve been non-stop doing things since the kids got on the bus at 8:00. But, I haven’t actually accomplished anything. I didn’t manage to get through all my emails, which was the first thing I started doing. I started on the concepts in Photoshop, but didn’t stay focused long enough to accomplish anything. I only approved half the posts in Triberr. And now I’m piddling with a design mock up.
Rinse and repeat for the afternoon.
Now, it’s 3:00 and the kids are coming home. They need help with homework, encouragement to complete their chores, and dinner needs to be started. So, now I’m still “working”, only now I’m being distracted 3 times as much. Pretty soon, it’s 8:00 and I’m ready for bed and most of my To-Do list is still only half done. I haven’t replied to half the emails. Those design concepts are still sitting there not completed. The mock up site is only 90% done. Triberr was only done for 1 account. I haven’t responded to any comments on my blog. And I certainly didn’t go visit and comment on blogs that I love to read and comment on. It’s been a week since I’ve posted anything on my own blog.
Then, I go to bed. In the morning I’ll get up and do the whole thing all over again.
Am I the only one?
I’m going to be working on this. I don’t often make plans to change, especially since I’ve been sick. It’s not easy to diet, smoke less (or quit, God forbid), or anything else when you have all the time in the world to think about nothing but food you can’t have or the cigarettes you can’t smoke. When I had a life outside the home, it was easier. There were other things to focus on, to keep me busy. But, I’ve got to get better at managing my time, especially now that I’m busy with design work.
Any tips for me?