I've always thought of myself as a V.O.P (Very Organised Person)
I flippin love a list, I keep a constantly updated diary (NOT on my phone - has to be an old fashioned leather diary), and am usually on top of work, housework, family organisation and all the other jobs that come with a busy working life in a busy family. (I wrote 'mumboss' then deleted it because the word for some reason really does my head in - will save that rant for another day)
The last two months have BLOWN MY MIND however. Despite being Mrs Super-Organised I have found I've been chasing my own tail constantly and getting to the end of each day exhausted (more than usual) and feeling like I've done a lot but not achieved half as much as I set out that morning. Chuck in a dose of being quite snappy with those who have not deserved it (sorry family) and something needs to change. I'm feeling quite overwhelmed. More tired. Less productive.
I recently read an article by (the amazing) Caroline Hirons about streamlining her email system - and as soon as I read it I yelled 'YES' out loud (in the queue at the doctors reception - embarrassing) because I instantly got what she was saying.
A huge problem is that I'm glued to my phone A LOT. Too much. Some of it has been unavoidable during launch month - but I'm determined for this to change. I read and then reread emails, texts, twitter, FB & insta updates - mentally noting what I need to do/reply/action but by the time I get around to sitting at the computer to do said work, I'm duplicating a lot of the process. Life has gradually gotten a lot more busy over the last 6 months and I've not adjusted the way I do things.
I read the description for a 'tidsoptimist' a while ago - and really thought 'yep that's me' - a time optimist. I CONSTANTLY think I have enough time in the day to achieve world domination. I get things done - but by the skin of my teeth. An hour free? Yes that's enough time to clean the house, change the beds, run to the post office, reply to several emails and walk the pup. I get most of it done, but feel frazzled, don't look up to appreciate the scenery or people I'm with, and get to the end of the day in a total whirlwind. Its not fun for those around me either.
So starting tomorrow (gulp) I'm trialing a new way of doing things. I'm starting every morning differently. NOT looking at my phone. Nope, not even turning it on.
I'm going to get up and look at the world first through my own eyes, not twitter, not news channels or Insta. I'm going to stretch, drink tea, take the pup for an early walk (*permission to change that one dependent on the weather) and spend time in the now - before the day fully starts.
I'm going to allocate myself 3 set periods through the working day to check - and most importantly reply at the same time - to my emails and messages. Rather than try to juggle everything at once and exhaustingly only achieve half, I'm going to focus on priorities and give myself time to finish them. No more reading emails while running to and from appointments, or half-talking to people while really reading a message. Its rude and quite a poor show.
After working hours the phone goes off until the kids are in bed. They deserve my full attention. Then I can spend a small amount of time planning the next day, and (gasp) maybe have some time for me and the Mr.
As I'm writing this I'm wondering if I can really do it - but I'm hopeful it will make me act, feel and work better and smarter. And actually be a huge relief. One further thing I'm planning is to take a small chunk of time on a Sunday to plan my whole week, think about what needs to be done and achieved for the coming 7 days. This will hopefully stop me constantly worrying that I've forgotten something (and gives me the opportunity to make a new list - woohoo!!!) When I need to spend extra time on work, creative planning and scheming - this will be done in the wee hours (SO much more productive in a quiet house with zero distractions)
So while I always thought I was an organised person - hopefully this will make me an efficient person. And a nicer person to be around too. Which is just as important right? I'll keep you posted.
- Katherine Worden