Friday, April 18, 2014

Time Management

Glass etching by Phyllis Dewey

Here I sit with a list of things to get done by next Wednesday. I've already crossed off the things I needed to get done by this weekend.....well, almost. 

We all tend to get busy. At times it feels like we get TOO busy. We find ourselves with way to many things going on at the same time. Multiple places to be at the same time. Multiple things to do over the same time frame. Demands from others for our time. And things we want to get done for ourselves.

We have families, we have jobs, we are members of organizations, we belong to quilt guilds, we attend church, we attend school functions, we attend or give parties. 

We take care of our homes (some have spouses and others to help with that, others don't). We cook, clean, do laundry, get our vehicles repaired, we garden or take care of our yards/land. We pay bills, do paperwork. We have deadlines we meet.  We have pets to take care of and love. We take care of loved ones, and ourselves. We get hair cuts, get our nails done (or not).

We spend time on the internet. (and I thank you for taking time to read my blog). 

And --- we quilt, we create, we have hobbies. 

Once in a while ---- we take time to breath!  

While I'm winding down after a busy week and face a busy weekend, yes, even with it being Easter weekend, I realize I need to take time to breath. And I will.....right after I go get the clothes out of the dryer, fold the towels,finish an ornament, pay some bills, finish writing this blog entry, while drinking another cup of coffee. 

Welcome to my real time management:

I set deadlines, make a list of things that need to get done and do my best to stay organized in my mind as well as my desk, my orders, and my work production. 

I get up at the same (or close to the same) time each day whether I'm working in my quilt studio or my other job. I go to bed at the same time each night. I work best with less than 8 hours sleep, and generally get 6 or 6 1/2 a night. Once in a while I sleep in later. 

No matter what you have on your plate, what you have to get done, what you want to get done and what other obstacles may be in your way take a deep breath from time to time. Take a few minutes in the middle of it all and take a break even if it is a few minutes. 

Set your goals. Be realistic. If you have a business let your customers know the time frame when their job will be done. Estimate it for longer than you think it will actually take. It is better to get things done ahead of time and impress your customer than have to contact them and apologize for being late. 

Set time aside each day for yourself. It may only be a few minutes, or an hour. If you don't take some time out you will get burned out. As quilters we are always looking at the next quilt we want to make, the next line of fabrics we 'need' to have, the next step in the quilt learning curve, the next class to take, the next show to attend, the next technique to learn. We also find ourselves burned out and at an end of our enthusiasm for quilting. We ask other quilters how to get our creativity back. We fear we will have lost our desire to quilt. We may even panic. 

Don't panic. Take a break. You may need more than an hour, you may need a few weeks, or a year. Try new things. Enjoy what you do, whatever it may be. Don't make your hobby that you love, something that you dread needing to do. 

Relax. Accept the things that life throws at you. Count your blessings. Put everything in prospective. List them in order that they need to be taken care of. If life gets too busy and you can't quilt, or work on other hobbies that you have, for the amount of time you would like to, take just a few minutes to work on it. By taking just a few minutes to craft (quilt, crochet, knit, paint etc) you will be less stressed. I've talked with many people who seem anxious and on edge because they don't have time to quilt at this time in their lives. I feel the same way after just a few days. But I have found that by just spending even 30 minutes at it I'm o.k. I can get back to what I need to take care of. 

I may have rambled a bit here. If I have, sorry. I may read this and delete it later who knows. For now... I still have clothes in the dryer, an ornament sitting here waiting on me, a cold cup of coffee and  the only sense of accomplishment.... the rambling of words I've just composed. 

I hope you all have a wonderful Easter weekend. May you have time to spend with family, take time to relax, and remember what Easter is all about. 

God bless you all and thank you for being here to read what I write from time to time. I hope you enjoy it. 

Til next time...
take time to relax, 
to breath, 
and to quilt. 



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