Back in June you may remember me talking about trying to prioritize my day better by scheduling how I spend my time. At the end of the post I said I'd probably write another and give an update. Well, here's that update.
Did I succeed??????
Um, sorta. Okay, so the timeline I set out didn't really last long, which I'm sure surprises no one. The best laid plans always get ruined, after all. BUT all is not lost and I learned some interesting things about myself that has helped me be more productive and keep up on things I was falling behind.
First thing I discovered: moving first thing keeps me awake. I had J.H. Moncrieff suggest I try starting my day by writing instead of checking things. A good idea, but one that I've found doesn't work well for me. Why? Apparently, if I get up, sit down and do stuff like write, my brain decides it's time to go back to bed because I'm not in motion and I start nodding off. Then I'm lethargic the rest of the day. What I found really helps me (on days off) is getting up and doing chores or errands first. If I spend the first hour being active, I find I'm not nearly as tired later.
So, now instead of getting up and checking my email and all that stuff, I jump right into doing household chores or running errands. Then when I'm done there, I check stuff. (Of course, if I have work then all depends on what time I have to work.)
Second thing I discovered: taking ONE day to read and comment on blogs was easier than doing it every day at a set time. My plan had been to check blogs every day around 2:30pm, but I found it much more productive to do it every Friday night while watching GT Live (it's a youtuber.) I didn't read and comment on every post, but each blog I'm subscribed to gets a visit from me once a week regularly. Doing this also meant I wasn't worrying about it the other days off the week and that itself freed up some space in my mind.
Third thing I learned: As expected, naps happened after working. My job is very active and I also run the kitchen so that's a nice load of stress on me. Add to it some chronic health issues that are draining. So I didn't really learn anything here. Although, I did learn if I do the 1st thing I learn, I am much less likely to take a nap on days I don't work.
Fourth thing I figured out what setting a day off didn't work for me. I said I'd take Sundays off to give myself a day to slack off, but half the time Sunday would roll around and I'd feel motivated to do something. No way am I passing up that feeling.
As for the rest, there weren't any epiphanies. Getting exercise in was easier with hubby and during the walks I had someone to talk to, but that's no surprise. I think it's well known that have a work out buddy motivates people to do it.
SO what can YOU take away from this?
Well, if you're struggling to be productive, try looking at your day and making a plan on how you spend your time. Make it a loose outline and don't beat yourself up if you end up not sticking to it. I didn't really stick to mine, but discovering that moving in the morning helps energize me (and as someone lacking energy this is HUGE) made me more productive later. That alone made this whole experiment worth it. I still get days where I'm too worn out from the day job or the crap life decides to throw at me and the daily grind of managing a chronic illness, but I know a little more about myself and can use that to my advantage.
What about you? Have any tips to be more productive? Especially with a chronic illness. What time of day are you the most motivated to get writing?
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