Thursday, January 06, 2011


For disappearing acts, it's hard to beat what happens to the eight hours supposedly left after eight of sleep and eight of work. ~Doug Larson

So, yesterday I had a to-do list a mile long and decided to take a page out of Fly Lady's book: I used a timer.

15 minutes working on the website. 15 minutes to vacuum. 15 minutes on Twitter for LASR/WC. 15 minutes to fold laundry and put in another load. 15 minutes on the author chat for LASR/WC. 15 minutes to write ...

You get the idea.

I did discover that it takes longer than 15 minutes to clean pretty much anything. For my hardwood floors, I actually vacuum first and then Swiffer and it took me 30 minutes, even hurrying.

What I learned:

Having a timer helps keep me focused on the task at hand, whatever it is. It makes me more cognizant of time passing, and how easy it is to waste hours. It also gave me permission to "play" guilt free because I could set the timer for 5 minutes or 10 minutes -- a drop of time, really, and take a short mental health break.

I still didn't finish everything I wanted to finish, but I liked how it worked. I also work well under pressure and love a challenge, so having minutes ticking down really gave me incentive to GET IT DONE.

How do you try to organize your day?


You Belong in NYC

You're a person on the go, and you need to be in a city that never sleeps.

You enjoy being inspired by people who are as ambitious as you are.

You're the type of person who works hard and plays hard. You need constant stimulation.

Cultured and street smart, you can truly appreciate everything New York has to offer.

While I'm not sure I'd like living in NYC, much of the reasoning behind their choice is spot on.



Charity Tahmaseb said...

Have you tried the Pomodoro method? It was originally developed for studying, but it's excellent for computer work (and even cleaning).

Maria Zannini said...

My chiropractor talked me into getting a timer to STOP sitting at my computer. LOL. I get so focused on what I'm doing I forget to take a break--and that leads to my back problems.

Angelina Rain said...

A timer is a good idea, although I think you need more than 15 minutes to do anything. I might have to try that technique since I’m a master procrastinator.

Dru said...

I'm glad the timer worked. Will you continue to use it and increase the minutes?

re quiz: I belong in NYC and it is 80% accurate.

Have a good Thursday.

Brandy said...

I've never thought of using a timer when cleaning. I'm glad you had a good experience using it, though.

I Belong in NYC, too. I guess. Never wanted to live in a big city, though.

Wishing you a delightful day!

Melissa McClone said...

Timers are awesome! Though 15 minutes does sound a little short for a few of those things.

Marianne Arkins said...

Charity, I've never heard of the Pomodoro method -- I Googled it and found the site. They have a free eBook, but it's in Chinese! LOL... When I have time (ha), I'll try to look into it more.

Maria, I'm a bit of a Jack-in-the-Box and seldom sit still for long, which is part of my problem. I'm up and down, up and down. Using a timer keeps me in one place for longer than I normally am.

Angelina, you should try it! I love using a timer, and you can adjust it to whatever length of time fits your needs.

Dru, NYC is your town? Shocker, thank. *G*

Brandy, I guess none of us are beach gals, huh? And 15 mins is too short... yesterday was a test for me to get an idea of how much time is the best amount for certain things. Fly Lady always say that you can do anything, fifteen minutes at a time, so that's why I started with that number.

Melissa, how do you use a timer?

Tori Lennox said...

How do I organize my day? Excuse me while I roll around on the floor laughing. *g*

Wendi Zwaduk said...

I have set times and then DH usually stands over me harrumphing. Let me tell you, a grimmacing DH is pretty good incentive to get moving.