I’m beginning to realize one of my most precious commodities is my time. It has taken quite a bit of trial-and-error over the last 13 years to make me understand how valuable my time is – and how I must use it efficiently.
See, my problem is this: I have way too many things I’d like to do . . . and not enough time in a 24-hour day! I like to do teaching, web and office work, babying my gardens, licking brownie batter, and flirting with my husband in the post office. And that’s not counting the things I must do – like cooking, cleaning, and laundry.
So I’m on a mission to finding some tricks at making my work get done faster . . . so I can go play in the snow with my kids, finish my ebook, have more company over for supper, and go thrift store shopping. In other words, play.
Anyhow, what does this have to do with blogging? Well, I’ve found a few tricks to help me sneak in a little more writing time than what I used to. Of course, it helps to not have a newborn!
1. Prioritize my time according to the little guys.
With two toddlers still at home during school hours, I must ask myself this question: “What can be done while the baby is awake, and what must I put off until he is asleep?” If you’re a mom of little munckins, you’ll know what I’m talking about. I can bake, cook, do laundry, vacuum, and dust while the baby is right there in the middle of it all. But to do some other things when the baby thinks he must be center of attention can make the job last three times as long.
Who can run Quickbooks when Baby thinks he must have a calculator, or clean bathrooms when Baby is trying to get in the tub while you are cleaning it, or any kind of computer/writing work since Baby especially enjoys hitting the delete button? Ahhh!
That is true frustration folks. So I usually try to get the jobs done that I can while the littlest guy is awake – all while planning what I will do while he is asleep. Wasn’t God great when He created babies to need naps?
2. Use my daily planner.
I like to use the Homemaker’s Friend Daily Planner to write out my weekly schedule for the blog. Sometimes I will do this a couple weeks ahead of time. I have resorted to using a pencil since a day’s post might need to get erased and shoved a day or two later.
This has been such a huge help to me in the blogging area of my life! For example, as I’m washing dishes and thinking . . . or folding laundry and thinking . . . or shoveling snow and thinking . . . I will take those thoughts that are beginning to formulate into a post and go jot down the title in my planner. Most of the time, all I need is a title to spur my memory later when I actually sit down to writing it.
3. Cut down on social media time.
This one has been another big help with freeing up more time in my life. I still get on about every day to check messages and the Shoe page, but by not checking my Facebook newsfeed or Pinterest so much – I’ve found I have more minutes to do something else. It’s simply my own personal decision in giving myself the time to do the things I really want to do.
4. Schedule the posts on WordPress.
I don’t know how long I blogged on WordPress before realizing this nifty little helper they built into it. Not only will it let you schedule the day and time you want your post automatically published, but it also publishes to social media for you! I absolutely love that feature!
Instead of writing down the steps for you other bloggers, I have put together a short video of how to use this scheduling on WordPress. *You might notice in the video I set this to be scheduled for tomorrow, Jan. 22, but I had to change it to today since hopefully tomorrow I will have our Florida trip on here.*
5. Use my laundry and kitchen time to think.
They say that writing is something like 90% thinking and 10% actual writing time. And since my brain is one that can’t shut off with the turn of a switch (like my husband’s) I try to use that to my advantage. If I’m going to be thinking anyway, it might as well be for something productive – other than why I can’t have the chocolate brownie sitting on the counter!
That doesn’t always happen . . . yet it is my goal.
6. Writing replaces something else.
Like I mentioned before, I have cut way down on my social media time to help fit in more writing time. Writing also replaces what some other ladies might consider their hobby, such as scrapbooking, sewing, quilting, decorating, knitting, etc. I really don’t do all of those unless I’m forced to! Only because I don’t especially enjoy them. Of course, I must sew once in a while for my daughter and I — but I usually put it off longer than I should.
7. Become more efficient in other areas of my life.
Not only am I trying to become efficient and purposeful in my writing and blogging time, but it is my aim to do this in the kitchen and other areas as well. These, I will share with you in another post, Lord willing.