Thank you for being so indulgent with my lengthy time management post last Friday. I wanted to follow up and share some of the feedback that you left in the comments and also share a couple more things that I've thought of since last week.
I wanted to mention another way that I uses lists. One day this week I had 4 or 5 things on my list for one day and a few things on the list for the next day. Well, you know how life goes. Some days something happens that throws the list out the window or, as was my case, I simply wasn't in the mood to do the things on the list that day. It happens to all of us and often turns into a completely wasted day. If you have a list you can look for some other productive thing to do instead and just rearrange the things on the list. You are still productive, you've crossed something off the list and, most likely, you are finally in the proper frame of mind to do the original task.
My last point is to not obsess about it. If you feel the need to plan every minute then be sure to plan some off time. Don't plan your life away. When you get the opportunity to go to the museum with a friend, go! The beauty of having the list is that you can easily and quickly reprioritize and go have a fun time.
Here are some of the ideas that were shared by readers:
It seems that many of us share the secret of the spouse who does the cooking!
Gene uses meeting time to doodle design ideas. I wish I was better at doodling and sketching. I'm not but I used to practice drawing feathers while I sat in meetings. I'm convinced that time helped improve my quilting.
Shirley uses a timer for some tasks. I really like that idea and may get myself one. Set the timer and do the chore until the timer goes off and stop. You can get a lot done if you aren't watching the clock.
Regan reinforced the purging tip. She and her husband started purging and had a big yard sale. They made enough to pay for part of a cruise vacation the next year!
Libby recommended a book called Your Money or Your Life and said it was a big help to her several years ago. Irene also found the book helpful.
Candy made the important point that organization is a process, not a project. I totally agree. It's something you have to do continually but it really makes a difference. If you don't believe me, just ready Candy's blog and see how much she gets done while working full time.
Andrea said that she is more productive with a deadline and I completely agree. It's good to set your own deadlines sometimes. I often use the blog to create a public deadline for myself to help encourage myself to get things done.
Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts!
In my newlsetter this week I talked about managing time and making time for the things that I want to do. For me, that almost always involves "making". There's so much that I want to do every day that I am much more cognizant of how I spend my time than how I spend my money. I think about it constantly and am always looking for better ways to do (or eliminate) chores so that I'll have more time for the fun things. I also think about how to allocate my time so that I can participate in all of the hobbies that I have. I know that I'd be better off with fewer hobbies but that's probably not going to happen.
I get a lot of comments about how much I get done so I thought I'd waste some space talking about it. I don't think I am any sort of wizard about time management and I don't think I have anything specific to offer but I'll talk about it anyway. But if you don't want to read all of the following blather let me just sum up what it says.
It's all about setting and keeping priorities.
I figure I can spend time sewing or cleaning, quilting or shopping, dyeing or organizing stuff. I choose sewing, quilting and dyeing almost every single time. But if you are interested in more detail then read on.
First, there are life decisions and situations that impact time. None of these were made with any consideration for time management. I'm just mentioning them because there are situations about my life that naturally put me a little ahead of the curve when it comes to time for my passions. These aren't meant to be judgements of other people's life choices. But I think that these 4 coincidental things have been very infuential in directing the way I spend my time. I only mention them to help you think about your own life decisions and how they shape for decades to come.
Next, there are philosophical decisions that you make about your life that may not seem to be related to time at all but they really are.
Now let's get to the little day-to-day decisions that add up to a lot of time. Your situation is unique to you and everything I mentioned so far may have no application to you. Here are 10 tips might give you some food for thought:
Still not enough? Here's one of the best articles that I found on the web with tips for time management.
Now it's your turn. Please share what you do to make time for your art or any other time management tips that you have. As I said, I'm obsessive about it and am always looking for better ways to manage my time and I look forward to reading your tips!
I told you that I would keep you posted on my progress in finding a replacement for Google Reader. To be honest I am still waiting for a miracle; either Google changes it's mind and keeps Reader or a pure Google Reader clone pops up out of nowhere.
So far neither of those things has happened so I've been testing. Thank goodness all of these replacment readers can import your Google Reader feeds. Otherwise, I'd never be able to properly test my 400+ feeds.
I read my feeds on my laptop, my Android tablet and smartphone so I need my new reader to work on all of those platforms. I also need to be able to categorize and save posts. Here's how my testing is going so far
Bloglovin - You saw me post about this last week as I "claimed" my blog. Whether or nut you use Bloglovin you should at least claim your blog.
PROS: nice interface, commenting is easy, can "save" posts by using "like", has a good Android App
COMS: didn't import my saved (starred) posts from Google Reader
Feedly - This is probably the most popular of the current options.
PROS: imported all of my feeds and the starred posts, has an Android app, has several interface views that you can choose from but none are really like Google Reader
CONS: displays posts with newest first (word on the street is that they will release a last-first option soon), the Android app is ANNOYING! When you want to go the to blog to leave a comment the blog is opened in Feedly and it's often impossible to leave a comment. The comment box will be behind the keypad. If you try to move the screen up Feedly closes the blog and goes back to the menu.
Commafeed - This one is a new one to me that I've only heard about recently. I tried it out and found it to be totally unsuitable. There seem to be lots of bugs and it's klunky to use.
InoReader - This is the newest one that I've heard of and I started testing it yesterday. It works as an app extension to Chrome.
PROS: This one is the most like Google Reader in look and feel. It imported all of my feeds, categories and starred items. The screen looks a lot like Google Reader so it's really easy to start using.
CONS: No Android app but I can use it in my browser on the tablet and it works just fine. I expect that it will have an app soon enough.
As it stand now I am leaning toward Bloglovin or InoReader. Feedly makes me want to poke my eyes out. It's too fancy for it's own good. Commafeed isn't even a contender. I'll use both Bloglivin and InoReader for the next month or so and see what kind of improvements either one puts in place.
Have you picked a new Reader yet?
You may remember the decorating jag that I went on in March. I posted about the last 2 rooms here. Well, it's always the last few things that take the longest to accomplish. But now, aside from the quilt for the guest bed, I am officially done with the finishing touches.
In the office I hung this quilt behind the loveseat. This quilt is really special to me because my Great-Grandmother, Mom and I all worked on it. Great-Grandma Rakes made the blocks, Mom pieced the top and did the binding and I quilted it. I hung the framed doily next to it because I think that the medallion motifs of the blocks and the doily are complementary. The doily was made by a Great Aunt in the 1960's. Besides read makes me really happy.
When we built the queen bed frame for the guest room we had to put the bed on this wall. Unfortunately that didn't leave a lot of room for side tables. We could fit one but not two. I solved the lighting dilemma by using wall-mounted lamps. I like these a lot and we also replaced the ceiling fixture so something that goes with these. I'm still holding out hope that I will find a little (10"ish) table to put on this side that someone could put a glass of water or a book on. I have also got to get that quilt done!
In the bedroom I hung my On a Whim log cabin quilt. I had a VERY large framed print here for years that Chris never liked and I prefer looking at a quilt anyway. The plates over the fireplace are my memento from working in London (2000 - 2002). They are the planet series from Poole Pottery. Of course these were created before Pluto was kicked out of the planet club. That bench belonged to my Grandmother and is mostly used for Chris to pile his clothes on.
I used the Hang in Dang it system to hang both new quilts. It works pretty well but it takes some fiddling (safety pins) with the sleeve to keep the quilt from drooping on the ends.
In the guest bathroom you can now see where the color palette came from. When you look out the window you feel like you are in a tree house. That little green bench is my favorite find. My friend, Laura, and I spent the better part of a day checking out antique shops and junk shops for some sort of bench to put here. I wanted something people could put their clothes on or sit on. We found this at a antique/junk shop in Ashland and it was already that color! Everyone thinks I painted it with leftover wall paint but that's exactly how it came and it was only $25. Perfect.
Throw in the 2 new recliners for the den and I am done with decorating unless it involves making quilts. Some day, in a year or so, we will need to repaint the guest house and some day we need new kitchen countertops but all of that is in the future.
However, if the decorating bug has bitten you check out this post at Patchwork Times. She's giving away a Sherwin-Williams gift card.
For me it's now garden season and there are a lot of weeds calling my name.