Posts tagged ‘time’

June 27, 2012

Finding Time

I had a really busy week last week. So much so, that I missed two blog posts. It doesn’t take much for my ‘carefully planned’ schedule to go completely to pot. In some attempt to regain control of my time, I made a little table and populated it on hourly basis with what I was doing. I thought it would be a useful way of seeing where there was time I wasn’t making the most of.

Of course, there are huge chunks of time that are given over to work or parenting so they’re easily written off, as they are non-negotiable, obviously. But what I’ve discovered is that I claim to be busy, when actually what I’m doing is:

1) Playing Moshi Monsters. I set myself an account up so I could play with Eve, and now I’m playing it all the time. Even when she’s in bed. What’s wrong with me? I just need to complete my Moshling zoo and then I’ll be sane again. Honest. So much for not liking computer games…

2) Compiling the Net-A-Porter wishlist of my dreams, complete with evening dresses costing as much as a round-the-world cruise. For when I win the Lottery, obviously. And then get invited to the Met Ball. Which is a fairly improbable set of possibilities. It’s good to be prepared for all eventualities though, and it’s a bit like shopping without spending anything.

3) Searching for Antarctic voyages. Which, if you sail from Australia like Scott, are roughly 25 thousand pounds per head. It’s the travel equivalent of my Net-A-Porter wish-list.

4) Reading Grazia. Every Tuesday, I spent a couple of hours with this little addiction.

5) Spending time on Twitter. Ah, Twitter. I love Twitter, really I do. It changed my life. The eclectic group of people I follow means that I can be simultaneously immersed in conversations about politics, shoes, zombies and allotment gardening at any given moment. It’s utterly and completely amazing, but it steals time like nothing else.

There is obviously nothing wrong with any of these things. After all, time spent enjoying yourself isn’t time wasted, and after a day of working and parenting, it’s necessary for my brain to decompress a bit with something light and fun. The problem only comes when I think I’m too busy to work on any of the bigger things I want to do. If I fail to make some of them happen, because I’ve spent the whole year building a Moshling zoo and an imaginary wardrobe, how am I going to feel? Recording how I’m spending my time has been a bit of an eye opener. Although there is also the possibility that I need to get up earlier in the morning (like my writer friend who starts writing at 5.20am) if I reduce the amount of time I spend on these things, I might actually make progress on the things I really want to do!

So, I plan to spend no more than fifteen minutes on any of my ‘timewasters’ for every spare hour I’ve got, before putting them to one side and using that time more productively. We’ll see if it makes any difference in a month or so. For really good time-management-ninja help, I recommend you spend some time with the fabulous Marie Forleo. I’ve learnt a lot from her site.

How do you like to ‘waste’ time? And how do you stop yourself from letting those things take over? I’d love to know…

November 23, 2011


This isn’t a true blog post. Well, I mean, it is, because it’s here, but it’s really a scheduling agreement that I am making with myself with you as my witnesses.

I’ve been struggling a bit to find the time to write here and this is my solution. A bit less ad-hoc posting and a bit more scheduling. After all, it’s how I manage the rest of my life so this shouldn’t really be any different. I’ve still got to work out quite how other people who write blogs manage to do so much. I’ve come to the conclusion that there are not many who have young children AND work full time. It’s one or the other, or perhaps part time hours. Also, I don’t want to be doing things in life purely so I can write about them here. This is a blog about my life, not a work of fiction, so in order for it to be authentic, I have to spend time doing the things I want to do so that I have something to write about!

Anyway, here is my solution. I will post between three and four times a week.

  • Monday will be a post on parenting/Family Sunday/weekends/35:35 Challenge.
  • Wednesday will be henceforth known (in my mind anyway) as ‘Barbara Wednesday’. On this day I’ll write about all the things that I’ve categorised as being ‘Barbara’. See the list of previous posts to know what I mean. Or cast your mind back to The Good life. Whichever is easier.
  • In the same vein, Friday is now ‘Margot Friday’.
  • If I have taken a photo during the week that is good enough to sum up my week without any title or caption (because those are the rules!) then I will do a Silent Sunday post, because it’s a beautiful thing. To learn more about Silent Sunday, click on the box on the right.

As my 35:35 Challenges could be classed as either Barbara or Margot categories, I reserve the right to talk about a Challenge on Wednesday or Friday accordingly, and also there is bound to be some cross-over. The categories are to make life simpler and were used to help me sort out my scanner brain, but they’re not iron clad. I am human after all…

So, there we go. This is what you can expect from this site now, and what I can expect of myself. Thanks for sticking around for this long, and I hope you’ll be back for the first Barbara Wednesday post a bit later today.