Stop Talking About What You Need to Do

I normally love the holidays but personal circumstances left me feeling a little low this past season. I found myself getting irritated a lot more easily with the people around me and the tasks I had at hand. Like many people, I was feeling overwhelmed and stressed out until I realized, there was nothing left to do. I was all set for Christmas. The stress that I was feeling was coming from other people and I was taking it on as if it were my own.

In fact, when I think back to the month of December, every time I felt frustrated or panicky was when I was talking to my friends and family about all of the things that were on our to-do lists.

I love my friends and family, obviously, and I love helping them out but I realized that talking about all of the stuff that needed to get done wasn’t actually helping anyone out at all. Not only was I subconsciously taking on other people’s tasks as my own, but we weren’t even doing any of the things that we said we were going to do. We were just talking about it.

And sure, it feels good to talk things out and get a clear picture in your head of what needs to be done. Or maybe you find it helpful to get another opinion about your plan of attack. But the more we talked about what needed to be done, the more we talked about it, and the more we put it off. Strategies were formed, dissolved and discussed over and over again. It felt like we were being productive and we weren’t. We were wasting precious time and it was making us even more stressed out.

Even though I don’t make New Year’s resolutions (at least, ones that stick), this year I’m enforcing a new rule on my life: do the s#&! you say you’re going to do. Don’t talk about it; just do it. (Nike has been saying it for years, so it must be true, right?)

I mean, we can still talk. It’s good to check in with friends and family, or to ask for help, even if it’s just organizing your thoughts. But let’s multi-task, shall we? The more we get done, the less we’ll have to discuss, and then just maybe we can talk about something fun- or we could just brag about how 2019 is going to be the best year ever!

What are some of the things that you’ve been talking about forever that just never seem to get done? This is the year we’re going to do it! Tell us all about your plans below or email me at keepingbusyb@gmail.com and let me know how it’s going.

I’m always looking for the best ways to manage my time and workflow more effectively and efficiently. If you’re looking for more ways to increase your productivity as well, click here for more strategies that I’ve developed and researched and here for more ways to stay organized. For more ways to deal with your busy lifestyle, click here.

Do You Have 15 Minutes?

As the days get shorter and the number of tasks on our to-do lists grows ever longer, it’s hard to figure out sometimes even what needs to be done, let alone how much time you need to complete these projects. I’m constantly trying to find ways to maximize the spare moments in time I manage to capture throughout my day. This week, I’m blogging about what to do when you only have a minimal amount of time.

Certain necessary tasks often get overlooked or delayed because we perceive them to be more difficult or longer than they actually are. For example, when was the last time you spent an hour going through your underwear drawer? (Although to be fair, if you have enough to fill a Victoria’s Secret store an hour might not be enough!) To avoid blowing things out of proportion, time yourself the next time you take on one of these tasks. If it takes more than fifteen minutes, it may mean you need to do it more often, or find a way to pick up the pace. Try setting an alarm on your phone. Having that deadline looming over you may be just the motivation you need to try and get the following things out of the way in fifteen minutes (or less!).

• Empty out a drawer and sort it out- any drawer! Junk drawers, sock drawers and underwear drawers are often the most overlooked.
• Reorganize a drawer that’s used often and has gotten a little bit out of hand. Examples may include your cutlery drawer, your desk drawer, or the drawer of your bedside table.
• Dust bookshelves.
• Purge and reorganize your medicine cabinet.
• Organize your cleaning supplies by refilling bottles, replenishing often used items and taking stock of what’s missing.
• Purge empty bottles, unused or unwanted toiletries
• Go through your bookshelves and purge outdated or unwanted reading materials
• Replace furniture pads on furniture
• Clean your coffeemaker and/or kettle
• Organize and purge craft supplies
• Clean out your gym bag
• Clean out your fridge/freezer or any other extra refrigeration units
• Drag your luggage (suitcases, duffel bags, etc.) outside to air out, or a well-ventilated room when the weather isn’t appropriate
• Spray purses/shoes/coats and other appropriate outdoor gear with spray protectant
• Shake out outdoor cushions and floor mats
• Dust and wipe down table lamps and sconces
• Dust and wipe down light fixtures and switch plates

Here’s to a more productive day!

I’m always looking for the best ways to manage my time and workflow more effectively and efficiently. If you’re looking for more ways to increase your productivity as well, click here for more strategies that I’ve developed and researched and here for more ways to stay organized. For more ways to deal with your busy lifestyle, click here.

How do you keep busy? Share your secrets with us by commenting below, or keep it between you and I by emailing keepingbusyb@gmail.com.

Do You Have 10 Minutes?

As the days get shorter and the number of tasks on our to-do lists grows ever longer, it’s hard to figure out sometimes even what needs to be done, let alone how much time you need to complete these projects. I’m constantly trying to find ways to maximize the spare moments in time I manage to capture throughout my day. This week, I’m blogging about what to do when you only have a minimal amount of time.

Ten minutes of free time is a bigger deal than you think it is- in fact, some people swear by a scheduling method that involves setting aside an extra ten minutes for every hour block of time you schedule. Allowing yourself extra time after a meeting, phone call, or even an appointment with yourself can create extra time to check off your to-do lists, review your notes and prepare for the next task at hand. Bonus: if you find your meeting is running long or you run into unexpected complications with your work, you’ve got some extra time to play with. Here’s what else you can do if you only have 10 minutes.

When You’re at Home
• refill soap containers/replace soaps in bathroom and kitchen
• replace candles in sticks/holders/candelabras
• sort and take out your garbage/recycling/compost
• collect scattered children’s toys and put away
• clean your household mirrors (bathroom, bed, entryway)
• wipe down doorknobs (do this at your office too!)

When You’re at Work
• check your privacy settings, cookies, browser history on computer, laptop, or tablet and clean-up/modify as necessary
• clean out the nooks and crannies of your computer (and the rest of your electronics!) with compressed air
• test and purge all unwanted, broken or old office supplies
• sort mail; discard junk and make plans to deal with the rest

When You’re Just Looking for Something to Do
• sort through your coupons
• clean out your wallet
• clean out your purse or handbag

Here’s to a more productive day!

I’m always looking for the best ways to manage my time and workflow more effectively and efficiently. If you’re looking for more ways to increase your productivity as well, click here for more strategies that I’ve developed and researched and here for more ways to stay organized. For more ways to deal with your busy lifestyle, click here.

How do you keep busy? Share your secrets with us by commenting below, or keep it between you and I by emailing keepingbusyb@gmail.com.