February 10, 2014

Better Time Management for Creatives

I've noticed the last few Mondays have been a challenge for me.  Too many things on my to-do list, not enough hours. It's a difficult day to get through with a weekly appointment that takes 5 hours out of my day after the traveling.  It  leaves me feeling resentful about not having enough time.  

This morning I woke up dreading the day and the pressure of everything I need to do.  So what do I do when I need a mental break? Head to Pinterest, of course! I went with the intention of finding a snarky quote to commiserate about how much I hate Monday.

But then I thought, wait - my days on this planet are too short to spend time and energy not looking forward to one on a weekly basis. 

So it was time for some soul-searching and pulling out my calendar to make some adjustments.  Why in the world would I pile up a huge list of difficult and time-consuming tasks on a day when I wake up feeling overwhelmed and know time is short?

That's just silly because hello, I'M THE BOSS!!!! 

I rearranged my schedule.  Monday is now for playing, exploring, creating for fun.  It will be a day that I look forward to because it's my day to grow and try new things.  It's not a waste of time or dilly-dallying.  When you are a creative and your job is to come up with new ideas, you have to make time to fill up your well.  You can't throw in a bucket and expect to get the good stuff if you don't make time for it.

I'm officially declaring Mondays are no longer a day for to-do lists and deadlines for myself.  Those can happen Tuesday - Friday.  There is plenty of time for everything I want to do, just not all in one day.

And why am I writing this in a blog post? Because it's hard to give myself permission to play.  Even if it's very well-intentioned and productive play. Notice I even had to calendar it in so it feels like 'work'?

I'm off to do what I love today, it includes pulling out some paints this morning and working on a few new bead prototypes this afternoon.  And it's a luxury to have this time, but also a necessity because life is just too short to go around hating on Mondays!

Need help managing your time better?  Here are a two helpful articles to get you started.
Creative Time Management
Time Management Tips from Lisa Jacobs

Click on the photos above for their links on Pinterest.


Ema Kilroy said...

Thank you Heather! You have just given me permission to recharge.

Malin de Koning said...

Well said! Great phrases too.

Shenoi Victor said...

I find that keeping track of what I’m spending my time doing helps me figure out where my time goes. I have a rough schedule on my time recording software that I try and keep it future reference.

But going back after the fact and writing what I actually completed helps me stay more on track. It helps me make more productive use of my time and more accurate estimates of how long things take me.

Liona (Blue Merlin Creations) said...

Good for you, Heather! Giving oneself permission for creative time or even just to relax can be difficult when you have a multitude of responsibilities. I shall have to take a page out of your book and do the same =)

CraftyHope said...

What a fabulous way to look at Mondays! I too try to accomplish too much and feel that I need to try to SCHEDULE some time for play as well. It might not be on Monday specifically, but some time some day(s) nonetheless. Thanks for this great reminder.