Wednesday, 14 December 2016

15 minute chunks of time

As the end of the year approaches I always start to think about what I can do to make next year better than last. This year I've accomplished something I never thought I would when I wrote 50,000 words to win at NaNo. So I feel that my writing is finally coming together and I look forward to 2017 with excitement as I try to build on this and get my first novel in some shape to be read or even published.

But sadly the blog has had to take a back seat and I'm afraid that it's been rather neglected of late. So I enrolled on a course to help me re-focus my blog and move it on a little. But as ever time and enthusiasm are my problem.

I also started reading a book about organisation by someone called The Flylady. Lots of useful tips about getting on top of household management (some of which I may put into practise!) But one thing that she said struck home. She said that you can manage to do anything for 15 minutes, talking about cleaning and tidying tasks mainly but it got me thinking.

15 minutes isn't much time to spend doing a task. Thinking about household tasks I don't enjoy, even I can manage to spend 15 minutes cleaning the bathroom or kitchen. Knowing that the timer will go off and I can stop is key. Yes, she advocates using a timer! You can commit to any task as long as you stop as soon as the timer goes off and then move on to another task.  No task has time to become overwhelming so you breeze through them. At least that's the theory...

So I wondered if it would work in other areas of my life. For example, I allocated 15 minutes to writing this blog post and here it is! It didn't feel like too much of a chore and I knew that if it took longer than 15 minutes I could leave it and come back later to finish it off. Winning at NaNo has shown me that I can sit at my computer and write for a couple of hours. But I think giving myself permission to write for just 15 minutes will help me fit writing into my life in a way that banishes the guilt I sometimes feel.

I also plan to spend some 15 minute chunks dealing with the blog - writing posts, promoting it, scheduling and all that stuff that I know I should do but never get round to.

So let's hear it for the 15 minute chunk of time and using it productively in 2017!

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