How to get stuff done.

Lately I have had so many major, time-consuming things on my ‘To Do’ list, but I have been struggling to get started on any of them.

My thought process has been something like this “Oh I really need to update the whole policy manual for work (or clean out the kids clothes drawers, or get my business accounts reconciled etc etc) , it’s going to take hours, I don’t have hours right now, so I will do it later”.

However, I have never quite been able to find the many hours I needed to complete each task. (surprise surprise!)

This weekend, the weather was wet, windy and cold. “The perfect time to get stuff done”, I thought brightly.

However, by the middle of Saturday I still had not begun any of my jobs (which were mentally growing bigger by the second).

I decided to take a different approach. Instead of thinking “I need to do [insert whole mega-task here]“, I said to myself  “I will now spend one hour …….”

This was an achievable goal.  I knew I probably would not get the whole job done in that time, but I knew I could work on it for that amount of time. Being a perfectionist, I tend to put off starting jobs if I think there is a chance I may fail. This was a way of setting myself up for success.

I started with clearing the summer clothes out of my daughters overflowing drawers. After one hour, I felt so pleased and motivated, that I kept going for another 20 minutes until it was finished. I then spent 30 minutes reconciling accounts, and another 30 minutes sorting out my sons room.

It’s amazing how success inspires you to want to do more. I was so productive today, that I am actually feeling excited about spending more time on my list of ‘jobs I don’t want to do’  tomorrow. This is a whole lot better than the usual feeling of dread that procrastination brings.

What do you need to spend one hour doing? Do you put things off, like me, or do you find it easy to  just get stuck in?

Photo via  Apartment Therapy.

Copyright (c) 2012, Teaspoons and Tinsel. All rights reserved

Comments

  1. This is a great post, Stephanie…I probably particularly liked it because I can totally relate. I, too, am a perfectionist and will often put things off things off thinking I need a specific amount of time to achieve them but never really finding that time. I think your suggestion is perfect for people “like us” and I know I’ve employed the concept but only unwittingly. Lol! Thinking back, it does work and I should do it more often. Thanks for bringing us your thought process. (I think I may try a first ever “Reblog”. My readers would appreciate this one)

  2. Reblogged this on Suffonsifisms: Close to Home and commented:
    This is my first ever “Reblog”, a neat little feature in WordPress. I read this post by Stephanie and could totally relate. I thought perhaps some of my readers might appreciate her wisdom. Enjoy and don’t forget to go and comment on her blog.

  3. Hi Stephanie. You sound very busy and I know from your posts you are productive. ‘Getting it all done’ one hour at a time is the theme of my life. It is true that seeing things in smaller parcels helps. I have been retired a whole month and my house should be totally clean by now, but…. Jane

    • Hi Jane, thanks for the comment. My mum has a fridge magnet that says “dull women have immaculate homes” and I definitely think perfectly clean homes are overrated! By the way, I’ve been loving your poetry- you are a talented lady!

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