time yourself

time yourself

Sorry about the break I needed to take from this project. Hoping to get more posts out there as the summer rolls along.

I think I heard it best said on the Happier podcast with Gretchen Rubin and again on the latest Happier in Hollywood.

The worst task to do, is the one that isn’t started. I found this to be SO true this week. I had so many things to do and was feeling overwhelmed. But then, I started thinking, I bet I could get that done in just a few minutes.

I had my daughter time me and realized that I can unload and reload the dishwasher in about 5-8 minutes. I can mow the backyard in 4.5 minutes and the front yard in 3.5 minutes (I have a very small yard!) and I can file paperwork in 4 minutes.

1 >> Set yourself up for success.
The key is setting yourself up for success, so when you are ready to do the task, you have everything you need to complete it. When I’m going to mow the yard, I need to make sure I have gas in the mower and yard bags to empty the grass clippings from mower when I’m done. It also helps to make sure that there aren’t a lot of chairs and things all over the yard to make it easier to mow. When I do the dishes, I make sure that all of the dishes are in the kitchen and not all over the house. I have dishwashing detergent. My cupboard where I store almost all of the dishes is right above the dishwasher, so I don’t have to waste time moving around and can load and unload easier. When I’m filing paperwork, I sort things into categories according to my filing system, so it is very fast to put things into folders when it is organized ahead of time.

2 >> Make it a game.
Sometimes we put off tasks because they seem so difficult, but it is fun to see how fast you can get something done. I will try and make a game out of it. Set a timer or have someone time you. See how fast you can get it done, but still do a good enough job to consider it a completed task. Even now, when I can do the dishes in five minutes or less, I feel a huge sense of accomplishment. Like I beat my old time, or I just got something done and now I can relax.

3 >> Plan your time wisely.
Knowing how much time it realistically takes to clean or do any one given task, will help you plan out your time so that you can get what you need to get done, when you need it done. So many times, I have decided I am going to clean today, but then get distracted on one task. Then feel like I only got one or two rooms done by the end of the day. I feel like if we keep our mind on the time, than it will be more compelling to finish in the time you think it will take.

Hopefully you can time yourself to realize that one given task, may not take as long as you think, and you'll be more motivated to get things done.

birthday parties

birthday parties

towels, blankets and sheets: the linen closet

towels, blankets and sheets: the linen closet