I always get TONS of requests on info on how I do everything, so … in November on Tuesday and Thursdays I’m going to have Time Management 101 with tips for balancing family, hubby, life, job, friends, house, etc.
“How do you do it all?” Is the #1 question I get.
I have to start by saying that I’ve worked through many of these things in the last year with my life coach Judy Baer. She helps me “think through” trouble areas of my life and find a solution … what a concept!
I realize the “life” doesn’t begin “after this deadline” or “this book release” or “when my books sell X number.” Life is happening today. So I can either live in a mess … setting myself up for failure, or live successfully. I chose the latter. I’m striving to live a sustainable life. I don’t want to burn myself out.
I’ve given myself permission to set a schedule that works for me. I use Microsoft Outlook, and I schedule in EVERYTHING. From waking up and having morning quiet time, to straightening the house, to making dinner, to working on a book proposal—it’s all on the calendar. This works for me because it helps me to be realistic with my daily goals. In I have a day packed with other things, I can’t write 2,000 words … and I don’t stress myself out thinking I should. I also like to check things off a list.
Now for actual stuff. I’ll start with what I think is most important and work through the list from there.
1. Like many on the list I balance writing and mothering. Actually, I homeschool, too. This is what I do:
2. I schedule quiet time, devotions with husband, church on Sundays and Wednesdays and small group at our house. The spiritual foundation comes first.
3. I hire someone to do deep cleaning four hours a week. Also, my kids have all their own chores. I’ve done this since they were small. Currently, my daughter (15) has kitchen duty. My 13-year-old son gathers/puts away laundry, sets/clears table, etc. My 18-year-old son sweeps/mops the floors and taxis his siblings around and does occasional chores for me. I spend about an hour a day “keeping everything up.”
4. I set a do-able homeschool schedule. Every Monday I co-op with my friends for about four hours, and we each teach from our strengths. I teach writing, my friends teach other subjects. I also spend only about 30 minutes a day going over my kids school work with them. They work in the same room as I write. I help in small spurts as needed.
5. I have one day a week for errands. This is also the same day I take my grandma to lunch/dinner. (She lives with us.) This is also the day for SLS … or as Mary says, “Stupid Little Stuff.” I plan that stuff on this day since I’m already out.
more on Thursday!