Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Little Extra Time

I recently subscribed to the Get-it-done-guy's Quick and Dirty Tips to Work Less and Do More on the Quick and Dirty Tips Network.  Out of all the productivity and self-help books I've read, this little podcast has done more for my productivity, attitude and general outlook than any of them.  Stever Robins has recorded almost 150 episodes which range in topic from packing tips to travel without wrinkling your clothes to how to craft a better "todo" list.  That last one alone has helped me immeasurably.  I'm actually getting to the point where I have time again to do some of those things (like posting on this blog) that I enjoyed doing before my daughter arrived and through my limited time-management skills into a downward spiral. 

My advice is that you subscribe to this podcast at the website or through iTunes and download every episode so you can browse the topics.  Then choose one or two to look at every week, whichever ones seem to be the most applicable.  People in business or who don't stay-at-home will find Stever's tips most helpful, but anyone can apply them to their own circumstances as needed and find themselves getting more done while working less. 

Do not do what I did initially.  Like I do with every podcast, I downloaded every episode and listened to them all back-to-back until I caught up.  The problem with that was, I gave myself no time to implement the tips Stever was giving me before I was on to the next tip!  All I had was a general sense that, if I did some of these things, I would get more done and be happier for it.  When I stopped to implement things like the "todo" list or the his tips on creating a filing system, I was thrilled with how effective they were.  So take your time and find one or two things a week to work on, and really implement the tips.  I think you'll find what I found: that working less and doing more is actually pretty easy.

On a more personal note, I find that being more productive with my time makes me feel better about myself.  When I look at a todo list with a bunch of stuff scratched out, or can find a receipt my wife needs, I feel like I'm doing my "job" as a stay-at-home.  When I realize that I've done everything I needed to do on a given day, I find that I enjoy my time playing with my daughter much more, because I'm not worried about something else that's not getting done, I can be more present to her.  Some parents out there probably figured a lot of this out long ago, but I'm happy that I discovered this podcast when I did.  It has helped me in many ways to be better and has allowed me to consider goals, plans and dreams I had discarded. 

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