Why Time Management Doesn’t Work

February 18th, 2012

I’m getting ready to re-vision my blog. By that I mean I’m going to take a short break to brainstorm some great ideas for future posts. I want to make this a place you can stop by to pick up handy tips and inspirational messages to help you in your day-to-day life, as well as catch a weekly laugh.

That being said, I don’t want to just leave you high and dry while I work up a new plan, so I’ll be re-posting some of the best from the last year. Enjoy!

Why Time Management Doesn’t Work

Like most people, I often complain about the amount of time I don’t have. I’ve tried a variety of time management strategies with different degrees of success. Yet all the complaining in the world and no number of time management tools ever seem to keep time from slipping through my fingers. I always wondered what I was doing wrong. Was I just lazy?

Then I read Joy Held’s May 9, 2011, Monday Meditation: Time and Herding Cats. It clicked. Maybe it will for you, too.

Monday Meditation: Time And Herding Cats
by Joy Held

“Time management” is an oxymoron. We can’t possibly manage time. It does what it wants regardless of our efforts to wrangle it into submission. It marches on no matter what. Trying to manage time is frustrating because it’s a little like herding cats or nailing Jello (trademark) to a tree. Time has a mind and a mission of its own. Time cannot be told what to do and it cannot be beat into submission. But time rules the world and we will continue to know frustration until we develop a different relationship with time.

Read the rest of the post.

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Meditation and prayer often go hand in hand. When you need ideas on simple ways to pray you can find a good resource in my book Simply Prayer, available in print, for Kindle and NookAudio book version coming soon.

Beating the Clock With Time Management

August 20th, 2011

Welcome to Toolbox Saturday where you’ll find tools for various things from writing to whatever.

Use a timer to make time to write.

One of the biggest obstacles I have to overcome on a daily basis is time management.  There are times I wish I could magically create time a to write where Tiny Tot didn’t need my attention for a couple of hours and I could work in peace and quiet.  As of this moment, however, that magic ability has yet to appear. The best I can manage on a daily basis is to wait until she goes to bed and hope I’m still alert enough to create comprehensible sentences.

Thankfully Grandma likes to play with Tiny Tot, so I also have about four hours every Friday and every other Monday to write like a madwoman. Even so, that’s not a lot of solid writing time.

Reaching for the dream…

Because Tiny Tot is one of my reasons for pushing on, I know finding the time to write is essential. You see, it’s my dream to stay at home with her, so I absolutely must write (and publish) to make enough money to attain my goal.  That can feel impossible at times, especially when just starting my career.

I have no doubt there are a lot of writers like me, searching for ways to make more time for their craft.  While I don’t have the answer to how to do this, I know of a few resources to help us.

2 ways to make time…

Perhaps the best resource is Flylady.  Marla Cilley (aka Flylady) advocates a system of 15 minutes at a time.  This system is designed to work in all aspects of home life and can be adapted for writing also.  The best part is that children can begin to understand that Mommy or Daddy will be able to play with them as soon as the timer goes off.  (Flylady’s way of keeping things moving is to use a timer.)

Another writer once said her husband  helped her fix a way for her to sit on top of the fridge to work while her son played safely on the floor below her.  Being creative is what writers do.  Putting that creativity to work finding a way to snatch a few minutes to write is a logical step.  I’ve personally discovered I can work on a project during lulls at my day job.  It may not be as satisfying as sitting at my computer for a couple of hours, but it keeps me going in the right (write? 🙂 ) direction.

Trial and error…

I am positive there are other resources available that actually help (and many that don’t) with time management.  My suggestion is to try several.  Keep doing those that work for you and discard those that don’t.

Time is a commodity everyone must decide how best to use and writers are no different.  However, when you use your creative impulses, you may discover some unique ways to create time to write.

What works for you? What tips and tricks do you use to make time to write?

Is Speech Recognition Software The Next Step In Writing

August 8th, 2011

headphones photoI think any writer can tell you that, when you stop writing, life becomes nothing but shades of grey. That’s what my last few weeks have been — nothing but shades of grey. In short I’ve been miserable. It’s not that I haven’t wanted to write. It’s just that I’ve been very busy. I usually have just enough time to juggle all my responsibilities, including working on my current project, but I’ve recently picked up a few hours at work and its severely limited my time.

And so I am once again faced with trying to find a creative work around to my lack of time. I’ve heard that voice recognition software can really speed up the process of writing. However, as I test this new software today, I’m finding it more than challenging. Why? Because I’m used to letting the words flow through my fingers and talking in my head, not out loud. I’ve found staring at a blank screen to be daunting as I try to decide what words to say. I usually close my eyes and “let my fingers do the walking,” but with speech recognition software you have to keep track of what the machine is doing. (Of course, that could just be the perfectionist in me. :P)

I have to wonder if this software is more for people like my husband who likes to talk things out rather than write. He’s a very auditory person. I’m very visual. In fact when I talk in my head I actually see the words as they float by. Strange, I know, but then I wouldn’t be a writer if I weren’t a little strange.

So far I’ve spent more time trying to get this software to do what I want than getting any work done. It would’ve been faster to type this than use voice recognition. Still, I don’t like to give up on something new, so I’ll go through some training with my computer and give it a little more time before I decide to chuck it all.

I’m curious to know, is there any writer out there who thinks voice recognition software is the greatest thing since sliced bread? I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject. Is this the next step from pen to typewriter to computer to speech?

Why Time Management Doesn’t Work

June 22nd, 2011

time photo
Like most people, I often complain about the amount of time I don’t have. I’ve tried a variety of time management strategies with different degrees of success. Yet all the complaining in the world and no number of time management tools ever seem to keep time from slipping through my fingers. I always wondered what I was doing wrong. Was I just lazy?

Then I read Joy Held’s May 9, 2011, Monday Meditation: Time and Herding Cats. It clicked. Maybe it will for you, too.

Monday Meditation: Time And Herding Cats
by Joy Held

“Time management” is an oxymoron. We can’t possibly manage time. It does what it wants regardless of our efforts to wrangle it into submission. It marches on no matter what. Trying to manage time is frustrating because it’s a little like herding cats or nailing Jello (trademark) to a tree. Time has a mind and a mission of its own. Time cannot be told what to do and it cannot be beat into submission. But time rules the world and we will continue to know frustration until we develop a different relationship with time.

Read the rest of the post.

Photo by bogenfreund

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There are a lot more ideas and examples on simple ways to pray in my book Simply Prayer. Ebook version available for NookKindleKobo, and Scribd.

Or Pay What You Want for the audiobook.