This is a companion piece to my post about the decision to implement a 40-hour workweek in my life. While limiting myself to 40 hours a week of homemaking (hobbies not included!) has been wonderful, I don’t think it would work so well without these other two pieces. When I combine all three, I accomplish everything on my list, am not stressed at the end of the day, and am able to roll with the punches better. That last one is super important if a.) you are an introverted type, b.) you want to control your schedule, and c.) your husband is an extroverted, more impulsive type. Yes, when he sends a text after work and wants to know if we can have someone over for dinner (an hour from now) or if we can go to this activity (also probably an hour from now) – it really helps when I already feel in control of the day and not overwhelmed by the basic things. I can either reply “yes” or “no,” but I’m more inclined to say “yes,” and to give a reply without turning into an emotional, stressed-out mess. All of which my manly, people-loving husband is extremely thankful for.
Now, before we go any farther, a disclaimer: I’ve only been using these separately for the past two months. In the past few weeks I’ve begun to combine them. The reason is that I’ve come upon this solution to my time management/stress/guilt problems slowly, over the course of a year and a half. And it is almost entirely thanks to wonderful bloggers like Crystal Paine, Andrea Dekker, and Michael Hyatt, who have modeled and encouraged good time management to their readers. The rest of the credit goes to my wonderful and supportive husband, who would hear me hash out ideas, then help me put them back together in a logical way. The specific blog posts that I directly borrowed ideas from, or that gave fruit to these ideas, are referenced at the end of the article. They are absolutely worth the read.
Now, this strategy goes out the door whenever we travel, get home from traveling, or Prima goes through some sort of growth spurt/teething/basically-won’t-sleep-well sort of thing. I’d like to refine it for those situations, but that hasn’t quite happened yet. I have ideas, but nothing hashed out into a workable strategy yet. (Same thing for how this whole thing might work for part-time and full-time working ladies, children or no.)
Here’s how it works right now:
- I like to get up between 6 and 6:30, say goodbye to the Norseman, eat breakfast, and read my Bible (complete with journaled thoughts and lessons learned.)
- Get dressed and “done up” for the day
- I make my list of the six most important things that must happen today. This does not include usually basic care or feeding us. And some days, I only can come up with five things! Here are some samples:
- Pickup library book and drop off others
- Start laundry
- Cut Norseman’s hair
- Clean kitchen
- Write blog post
- Take the dog out and water the plants
- Read through emails, text messages, and blog posts
It’s that simple. I want to refine it some and add regular workouts/walks/runs as a number five, which would then move the getting “done up” part of two to a number six.
Here are the promised links:
- The Six List: The $25,000 Piece of Advice – Crystal Paine
- Say Goodbye to Survival Mode Challenge: Create a Morning Routine – Crystal Paine
- My Morning Routine – Crystal Paine
- My Morning Routine – and how it sets the tone for my family’s day – Andrea Dekker
- 7 Tips for a More Productive Morning – Andrea Dekker
- How to Better Control Your Time by Designing Your Ideal Week – Michael Hyatt
- How to Create More Margin in Your Life – Michael Hyatt