How do I do it all? Well to start, I am a mom of four kids. I work a full-time job as an Engineer, and I teach part-time at a University. Lastly, I am an author.
I learned a long time ago to manage my time. I’ll provide tips below, however, you must make time management work for you. I make it fun, by managing to do something I enjoy, which is writing every day. If I am not writing, I am usually imagining aspects of a story, because I'm an proverbial daydreamer. Most of my friends or family would never think that I'm working on stories while I'm cooking dinner, taking a shower, driving or eating my lunch.
Steps to do more in a day than you ever thought possible;
1) KNOW YOURSELF
Take time to evaluate what stimulates you to accomplish your goals.
I knew that in order for me to get anything done, I needed to have many things going on at one time. I know it sounds weird, but I write best when I am surrounded by my kids. I also need lots, and lots of breaks. Therefore, most times I write in 10 to 30 minute sprints.
2) CREATE A CALENDAR THAT YOU CARRY EVERYWHERE
Carry a calendar, pda, ipod or cellphone. I use all of these items to keep me on track.
You must have the tools of the trade. I use my cellphone and my pocket calendar to store all of my task, appointments, and goals for the week. That way if I am riding in the car, I know what I can do to pass the time, yet be efficient.
3) SYNC YOUR LIFE
Update your pocket calendar or ipod, and set reminders for task or goals that you send yourself with your phone, email calendar, or notes in your pocket calendar.
I drive my family crazy with this. I set reminders for my writing time on my cellphone, outlook and my calendars.
4) MAKE YOUR DREAM LIST
I prefer to say dream list. I believe that most people are more apt to complete goals that are in line with their dreams. Therefore, don’t create a DREAM LIST of stuff you have to do like, homework, pick up kids, cook dinner. Create a dream list (or bucket list) of things you want to accomplish before you leave earth. Then list the things you can do or have to do in order to check off your DREAM LIST.
My DREAM LIST included, write a book, snowboard, ride in a hot air balloon, scuba drive, hang glide, and travel. Of those items on my list I have completed over half by my personal deadline dates.
5) WASTE NOT WANT NOT
Use those boring, do nothing moments effectively. I spend a lot of time at my kid’s sports practice just waiting for them to get finished. Therefore, I usually carry my manuscripts with me, and while I am sitting there for two hours waiting for them, I edit my books. If I don’t have books to edit, I give out bookmarks or other promotional gifts. I also, take a notebook for writing notes, or snippets for any Work In Progress I have. I also use the time to check student’s assignments from my teaching job at the university. Also, when I am riding in the car on long trips, I bring my laptop and write while my husband drives.
6) SET A DEADLINE – and CHECK YOURSELF
Set realistic deadlines for your DREAM LIST. Then squeeze in time to reach those dreams in your everyday life.
I have accomplished and experienced so many things in my life. Some things I have attempted, and yet failed. Others, I have attempted and changed course, and some I have conquered and am satisfied. Imagine your time here on Earth is a gift, an adventure of which you want to taste and do all the things your can before you leave. You will be surprised and amazed at all you have experienced if you know yourself, love yourself, dream big dreams, map a path to reach them, and enjoy every minute along the way.
by LM Preston, author of EXPLORER X-Alpha and The Pack http://lmpreston.blogspot.com