Life is more sensational when we find sensible ways to get done what needs doing.
Those of you who read this blog on a regular basis know that I have a husband, four kids, a dog, a cat, and I am running a fledgling consulting and business development firm. I have a lot of stuff on my plate. Some days that plate is overflowing and there are leftovers at the end of the day. So in order to survive with some sense of sanity it is necessary for me to find ways to work sensibly. I noticed over the course of my life that when I work sensibly, I get more accomplished and feel better at the end of the day.
One thing I have learned to do is combine things that can be combined. For example, in the morning, early in the morning I need to wake up and get the teenie bopper off to school. Every day I need to walk 10,000 steps as part of my exercise program and I am an avid reader who has more than 3,000 books on my Kindle I need to read. So, I combine these things. I call the teenie bopper on her cell phone to wake her up. This allows me to keep the rest of the children quiet and asleep until it is time to push them into the day. After I hang up the phone with the teenie bopper, I put on my Fitbit and start walking in place for 2,000 steps while I talk to the teenie bopper, encourage her to have the best day possible and start reading the news blogs on my Kindle. This way I get done several things at one time, things that can be done together efficiently and effectively.
I work at home for the most part which means I work with the accompaniment of my 5 year old twins who do not start school until September. So, I grab the laptop and do writing and research on the front steps while the twins play. Or while teaching the twins to read and write I walk in place to get more of those 10,000 steps out of the way. It is not good to work for hours on end without stepping away from the computer. So, in order to combat that, I stop once an hour on the hour and walk up and down the steps as fast as I can. I feel good about the fact that I am now doing 10 flights of steps in under two minutes and add a flight every week.
I offer these examples not because they are the only way of doing things, but because they are an example of combining things that can be easily combined and completed. Working mothers, (yes I know that term is redundant) need to find ways to combine our many tasks in order to get more of them done. I have learned that my children and husband will call my name every three minutes. I know this because I charted it one afternoon. So, the first step in getting things done sensibly is to start with a plan. You need to make a list of all the things you need to get done each day. There are certain things that must be done every day. So make a plan, a schedule for when you will do those things each day.
Some of that planning is easy, breakfast is made in the morning, dinner is made in the evening. Once you have a list of all the things that must be done, everyday, no matter what the day, you need to fill in the chores that changed based on the day. Next fill in the things that are special projects that come up. Once the list is complete, start looking at things that can be done together, tasks that can efficiently be combined.
I have saved for last the most important part of sensibly getting things done. The most important step is to be selective, you cannot do everything on earth, so pick and chose what makes your to do list. Next Saturday we will talk about how to pick and chose what goes on the to do list.
So the question for you this sensational Saturday is what are you going to put a sensible spin on?