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Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Flexibility and Structure are the Secrets!

What AWESOME comments left on my last post which was a call for YOUR time management and organizational tips. I was able to get some really great ideas from you all and I'm sure I can come up answers to my 'homework' question for my local art group at our next meeting :) Thank you!

Well....wait no more, the winner of the signed copy of Cloth Paper Scissors is:
Carol B...or Queen B as she is known on Etsy.

What secrets did Carol share for this contest?

Here is her comments:

"The trick I couldn't live without is my LIST. Every Saturday or Sunday, I start my list for every day of that upcoming week. I only add things on a particular day when I can tell I will have time for it. If I have a double header baseball game and vet appointment and bills to pay on one day, I know I better not ad much extra when there is laundry, housework, extra errands and every day stuff to do. Every week I "try" and save just one day where I don't add much at all, and that is the day I know I can either play catch up, or just completely throw myself into whatever I want to do ( etsy, creating, shopping, whatever). The feeling of scratching things off my list as I accomplish them is so relieving. My mind is chaos without my list, but when I go to bed at night and everything is scratched off for the day that just ended, I cannot tell you what a relief it is. KEEP A LIST!"

Thanks Carol for sharing your thoughts! And thank you to everyone that took the time to stop by and give us all some great tips!

(((New original art, "Home is Where The Heart Is" 12 x 12 on canvas"
So many great ideas, I really feel that they all could be tailored to my life in one way or another.

I really like the idea Cathie shared about having a massive cleaning 'date' that's on Thursday of each week. While tired by the time all the chores are done, her and her husband are able to enjoy the weekend without having mopping and laundry hanging over their heads. What a great idea!

I also feel that Jean hit the nail on the head as far as letting go those things we are never going to use or never going to wear again---with good intentions all things were bought or kept but the a only service to us now is a bunch of clutter and create stress with the feeling of obligation we have to these items..we should be doing something with all items (supplies, clothes, vintage collections, books, trinkets) but are not. Letting those things go out of our life that we no longer need is a lot harder than one would think but worth the peace of mind we achieve for doing so.
homeiswheretheheartisbottom (400 x 250)

I had to stop and think about whats STOPPING me from having organization in my life or having a handle on my time and I came up with this list:

*The feeling of being overwhelmed (not knowing what to do first with so many things begging to be at the front of the line)
*Time or the lack there of
*Money (if only I had storage, or a bigger place, or more closet space, or all the organizational bins that I really need....I'd be so much better off)
*Direction (what are my priorities, what should I do first, what needs to be done verus what I want to do)
*Distractions (ummm computer distractions, tv, email, to name a few)
*Having no one to turn to but myself to help me around the house or yard
*Unrealistic expectations I place on myself
home is where the heart isfullview

So I've been thinking about what I need to do to fix these things based on your comments and my own realizations and I came to a few conclusions:

1) I need to set boundaries on myself. While I don't have a lot of free time, I have more than others but that's not always the best of situations as I find that the more time I have, the more unproductive I can be. Truthfully, I need to set a schedule for myself. A schedule with flexibility so if something comes up I can attend to it, but overall more structure.

2) A list is a must. This is one thing I do utilize. But, I need to utilize it in a calender format. I love keeping a journal as a list but then I don't have a calender to reference for due dates and upcoming events. Having something I could keep a list with but also make references on the calender would be ideal. Does such an animal exist??

3) While on the topic of the calender, what i think I need to do is look at things on a monthly basis and schedule what I need to schedule at the beginning of one month or end of the previous month. The schedule needs to be updated every week on Friday for the upcoming week, then I can adjust each day as needed.

4) I need to really think long and hard on when I want my creative time to be and reserve that time for ME. If this is going to be my dream and I"m going to see it to fruition, it's going to need enough time to foster and develop so I can achieve my goals. Am I a morning person or night person? How much time can I dedicate to this endeavor?

5) Rewards vs Obligations: Right now, my reward is art time but I've been rewarding myself a lot more than fulfilling my obligations of keeping up my house which has caused the most stress for me. It's overwhelming to me to do it all. To be responsible for it I don't or rather I do only enough to get by but it still adds up eventually---as does the stress! Anyway, I need to say to myself, you can do this AFTER you do this. Reward myself but still keep my obligations under control. Whats that word?? Oh ya. Balance!

6)Prioritize. I got myself into a schedule bind because I was working on a February project when January one was close to being overdue. What's wrong with that picture? I need to prioritize in all aspects of my life.

7) Respect. Your family, mine, need to respect the fact we are artists, crafters, writers, and we need our time to develop our craft. Respect for our endeavors is imperative to our success. Respect without the guilt trip laid on us. Assistance with the family chores, kids, car pooling, whatever should be shared responsibilities. I'm not sure who I'm going to share my responsibilities it's something I'm going to insist upon if a 'someone' should come into my life.

8) Flexibility--schedules need to have built in flexibility. I would not follow one that is so rigid and scheduled down to the minute anyway. I just know me. Know yourself and your own limitations or tendencies.

9) Limit the excuses. I'm pretty good about this one but I see it sneak in my vocabulary here and there and they just need to go away. I really that if you constantly complain about something, that's time wasted on what you should have been doing in the first place. Take action and limit the excuses. Yes ma'am!

I'm sure I'll think of more down the road. We'll see how this works out. I'm 'flexible' if it doesn't :)

January pics1 (600 x 450)

**Carol send me your addy via: so I can mail your prize out to you!

Stay tuned for a couple cool interviews I had with some great art/blog pals!!

*This weekend, I'll announce my February giveaway, don't miss it!

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Tess said...

Wow, what a great post. I love the new canvas, very pretty. And yes, home is where the heart is, and sometimes home can be in more than one place. The heart is somtimes split between the two.

I loved the list you came up with for yourself. I do agree you must prioritize and have respect for your artful work as well as others respecting your abilities. I see here you will have lots to discuss at your next artist group meeting and future ones. I am loving following you and watching you grow and flourish Jodi, well done.

Now make a list of household chores and ask those handsome young men of yours for help and then be sure to schedule mommy time with them. Give them extra big hugs tonight ok, just because.

Clevelandgirlie said...

Hi Jodi! Well I think you are off to a good start - just by examining your situation and thoughtfull enumerating what "needs" to be changed. Didn't I see beautiful pictures of a big strapping "young" men on your blog - well THERE's your helper. I can't tell you how much my kids help out (albeit a tug of war sometimes) they each had their "chore list" (even when they were little 4 or 5) that they have to accomplish every Saturday. Work is great for kids - gives them a sense of responsibility AND accomplishment. Some of our best memories with our kids are while we were all working out in the yard or having a "scrub a thon" with music playing, lots of laughing and goofing off and, of course - pizza party when the work was done.

Enjoy the rest of the week Jodi. And keep your eye on your goal - you'll get there!

gryphon said...

If you want some more tips on organising the chaos have a look at the fly lady,
Some good stuff there I've used in the past, not that you'd know it looking at my dining table at the moment!