So as many of you know by now, I had a very long, unplanned hiatus from writing … right in the middle of my debut series. It was not good for me, for readers, nobody! But it was unplanned. It was one of those life happens moments that hit me and kept on hitting me until I didn’t know how to get back up. I couldn’t find a balance and I couldn’t get back to something that had once been so important to me. I’d like to think I’ve made my way back onto two feet … maybe onto one foot with a tip-toe down of my other. But it took a lot of learning how to balance all the new things that happened in my life and I had to re-teach myself how to manage my time!
I remember a few years ago when I first started writing. I was in my mid-twenties and I remember I felt busy all the time. HA! I want to go back in time a few years and kick that girl in the butt. I want to tell her that she doesn’t know what busy is! But the thing is, we don’t realize until we are in the thick of something how busy we can truly get, right?
Now, I look at my life and think, I can’t possibly take on anymore! And I’m sure in a few years, I’ll want another time machine to come kick me in the butt and say, you don’t know what busy is! But for now, I feel so busy! I’m trying to balance being a wife, a mother of 4, working a full-time job, and writing whenever I can. So between homework, cooking (which I’m terrible at — As a side note, if you can help me out with easy recipes I’m all ears), bathing kids, bedtime stories, cleaning, time with my husband, sports, work, writing – it can be hard to keep up. I know I’m not alone, and I know I’m not the only one out there struggling.
Maybe it’s not with kids, maybe you’re working multiple jobs. Or maybe you’ve got other people or things you care for. We all feel busy! And here is where the balancing happens — the time management piece.
I am still working through how to best do it all, so please, if you are a ROCKSTAR in this area of life, please help us mere mortals who struggle! Another side note — it’s funny because in my “real” job I’m a meeting planner. So I thrive on production timelines, schedules, etc. You’d think that would carry over into my personal life but for some reason it doesn’t always work out like that. One thing that does carry over from my work to my personal life are To-Do Lists — they are my life line. I have a planner that has EVERYTHING in it — dinners for each day, which then help me shape my shopping lists for each Sunday, my appointments, my deliverables at work, my writing goals, etc. I write everything down. It helps to have things scheduled like appointments (doesn’t always help for things like laundry, which I usually end up washing for 3 cycles before I finally move it to the dryer, but hey I’m working on it 🙂 )!
As far as writing goes specifically, one of the BIGGEST and most helpful things for me has been connecting with a support group. People I can count on to kick me into gear! This year my fantastic Writing Sisters started a group where we motivate each other and it is working for each of us to continue writing and working on our current WIPs (Work in Progress). Accountability can go a long way in Time Management and helping us prioritize the things that are important to us. Life can get crazy, but setting a goal for the important things, and scheduling time for the important things, is the only way to make it happen!
So here’s my weekly theme — TIME MANAGEMENT and creating a balance. If there is something you want to be working on, or an area that you feel isn’t getting attention – try to find some support & accountability and then schedule time for it. Make a weekly goal and stick to it, just one week at a time!
What are some of your time management tips and tricks of the trade??