25.7.13

Behind the Scenes / 03

Productivity

I want to share something a bit more personal today - I find it really hard to find my own voice when writing blog posts, and always ask myself whether this is how I really talk. If you know me in person you might be able to tell - please let me know what you think. ;) So my goal is to write in a more personal way.

Maybe it’s the fact that the internet seems like such a huge and wide open space, where anyone can access anything. And while the great thing about it is that you can connect with so many people that you would otherwise probably not get to know, it can also be intimidating opening up to ‘strangers’. But then again, isn’t that part of blogging?
I personally enjoy getting to know other bloggers better, which usually happens when someone shares something personal and opens up (and by that I don’t mean sharing their life’s story and secrets).

So, let’s try today - I’ll tell you a bit about my day-to-day life.
Most of my days are pretty relaxed, at least while I’m not going to uni (which is the case at the moment).
I used to just get up whenever I felt like it, unless something was on (usually around 8 when my boyfriend gets up to go to work), then went for a run, showered, had some breakfast, spent some time on Pinterest and checking mails etc. while drinking my tea and enjoying my rather long breakfast. So then by the time I had finished breakfast it was probably around noon. Sounds pretty relaxing, but a bit crazy, too. You have to know though, that breakfast/brunch is my favourite meal of the day, and we always enjoyed (and still do) a long brunch on the weekends back home.

Over time I realised that I didn’t really make the most of my time, and should put it to better use. It can feel pretty frustrating not being productive. I was never bored, but somehow the days just went by, and I didn’t feel like I got much ‘actual’ work done.
So I knew that I should be more active, and tried out different things to structure my day and get things done - like setting time slots, or putting the most important tasks at the top of the to-do list, or using Wunderlist. But none of my efforts really succeeded.

A while ago I came across Zenhabits - a blog focused on simplicity, living in the moment and being present, getting things done, health and fitness, and focusing on the important. It’s a great blog, and uncopyrighted by the way (a concept I’m really impressed by!) - you should stop by and take some time to read some of the articles, there are some great ones in the archives!

Anyway, one of the posts I recently read suggested saying ‘no’ to one thing each day (could be anything), and creating a new to-do list every day listing the three ‘most important things’ to get done for that day. Then at the bottom of the list go the ‘small things’ that don’t actually take up that much time, and shouldn’t get in the way of achieving your three main goals. Then set aside a specific amount of time to get things done - e.g. tell yourself you’ll work on ‘task x’ for 1,5 hours. Get it done during that time. You probably will if you focus.

So far this concept seems to work. I’ve found that giving myself a set amount of time really helps, as well as only focusing on three main things each day to not get overwhelmed, and not get frustrated if I won’t manage to get ALL of the stuff done that’s on my general to-do list.
It’s also been helpful to remember that small things shouldn’t take up as much space and time on my to-do list (and in my head) as some of the big tasks.

I hope this post came across as open and personal - and I hope you can relate and take something away for yourself.

How do you manage to get things done? Any ‘secret’ tips you have?

P.S. The work space above isn't mine by the way.

4 comments:

  1. Isn't Zen Habits such an insightful read?? I've been able to minimize and streamline a lot of my things because of it. Recently, I've been really inspired by this post and hope to plan my year of living without certain things: http://zenhabits.net/without/

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    1. I've been looking at that one, too. Started making a list of things I might want to live without for a month, but not sure yet what I'll actually decide on in the end. ;) Would love to hear how it's going for you if you decide to do it! Thanks for sharing, Tana! :)

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  2. So funny you mention this. My boyfriend follows Zenhabits and was just talking about it the other day! Full of some really useful tips for people who struggle with being organized.

    Kate from Clear the Way

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    1. That's funny! It really has got some great tips. Handy that your boyfriend is following along (for you). :)

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