Monday, November 2, 2015

Making Time

Post by Jenny

Daylight Savings Time came to an end yesterday, giving us the “fall back” extra hour. I love that and wish I could find a way to do it more than just once a year. But I am the worst about letting time manage me and not the other way around, so “extra” hours are few and far between for me. I am, however, capable of carving out an additional fifteen minutes a day for writing, Though it doesn’t seem like much, it adds up to 90+ hours annually, not counting the occasional Leap Day. I hope these simple tips will help you do the same:

Get up earlier. My husband has some flexibility with his work hours and prefers to go in by 6 a.m. so he can have more time with our sons in the afternoon. Even if he hasn’t slept well because of my incessant snoring factors beyond his control, he gets up early and starts his day. There’s no good reason I can’t do that, too. 

DVR everything. Digital video recording is a wonderful thing. How else can a person watch an entire baseball game in the time it takes to eat a hot dog? For those of you who never watch TV ever ever ever, I say good for you. For the rest of us who enjoy a show now and then…record it first so you can skip the extraneous stuff.

Keep track of time. As a kid, I loved the original Star Trek series. I was especially fascinated when Captain Kirk and the crew (including that poor expendable guy) jumped through a portal that messed with the space/time continuum. But I think my house is built on one of those portals. How else can I go into my closet for something to wear and emerge twenty minutes later, disoriented and holding a flannel shirt, a feather boa, and one rain boot? My only weapon against this insidious phenomenon is a clock.

Always have something to write with and on. You know the doctor will be at least fifteen minutes late, right? You don’t want to be stuck reading last September’s People magazine.

Cut your workout time. Everyone should get some exercise every day. But if you feel that anything less than an hour isn’t worth it, consider that in a 13-week University of Copenhagen study, subjects who engaged in 60 minutes of daily cardio lost the same amount of fat as those who exercised for 30 minutes. According to the American Heart Association, even 10 minutes of vigorous exercise a day has significant health benefits. So trimming 15 minutes off a longer workout every now and then won’t hurt.

Put things where they belong. Ever spent half an hour looking for car keys or a school permission slip? That’s time I wish I could get back.

Be selective. Say you’re in the middle of a book/movie/lecture/concert/telephone conversation/social event, and you realize it’s not worth your time. Call it quits. (Unless you’re the one giving the lecture.) You have better things to do. If other people are involved, make a graceful exit. Or fake a sudden bout of lactose intolerance. Your call.

If you’ve made it to the end of this post, thanks for your time! How will you find 15 extra minutes to write today?


RichardK said...

Thank you for titling this "Making Time" instead of "Finding Time". So many people say they need to find the time to write. In reality the time is there, they just need to make it work for them.

Patricia Stoltey said...

I'm getting better at making time work for me instead of the other way around. Giving up a lot of television shows has helped the most. I now have a short list of favorites and use the DVR to watch, often in segments while I'm on the exercise bike. I'm not usually good at multi-tasking, but bike and TV go together just fine.

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