Y’all, do you remember last week when I mentioned the whole end of season lull I was experiencing? The lull has turned into a productivity black hole where time management goes to die. And it hasn’t gone away yet. This weekend, I had just two things on the schedule and other than that? I accomplished nothing else. There was no massive clean of my house (that one has been on the list for a while). The laundry that I said I would fold stayed in the baskets. I didn’t write.
By the time I got to Sunday, the irritation with myself was real and deep. There’s little that drives me crazier than a weekend with nothing to show for the two days off.
I mean, I didn’t even nap.
In the interest of not wasting anymore of the few weeks I have away from the rink, it’s time to get back in the habit of managing my time rather than wasting it. There are a few techniques that I always go back to when I’m either drowning in to-dos (read: housework) or battling with depression (read: sitting on the couch like a zombie).
- Things in threes: The fastest way for me to dig out from under a mountain of housework and various to-dos is to take five minutes at the start of my day (usually when the kettle is boiling) and jot down my top three things for the day. One housecleaning task, one load of laundry and a creative project. Whether I get to all three or not, I end up doing at least two and find things a little more controlled by the end of the week.
- Time blocking: This is one that I often see written about on productivity blogs and such and I can see the value in setting up my day in chunks devoted to specific tasks. Thing is, when it comes to work and home life, this doesn’t really fit well right now. I can plan on it, but something often comes flying in out of left field and disrupts plans.
- Bribery. If you want to be fancy about it, you can call it the Pomodoro technique. Basically, for each task I don’t want to do, I reward myself with something I want to do. This works especially well when I have to fold laundry or run on the treadmill. Folding a basket of laundry gets me 10 minutes of reading. For the treadmill, I set the run for 35 minutes and tell myself that if I’m really not feeling it, I can stop after twenty. More often than not, I finish out the full 35 minutes.
There’s no time like the present so the list of three is set up for tomorrow. If worst comes to worst, I’ll use a bribery chaser. As I get more into the swing of the off-season, I figure I can attempt some basic time blocking and see what happens. Worst case, I can always just stick with the bribery and things in threes and still see results.
It’s that whole shoot for the moon and land among the stars thing. Wish me luck and
See you at the rink,