Time Management

I was kind of shocked at how many emails I received asking me about my new schedule. Since that many people emailed, I figured a few more might have the same question so why not just do a post? I think this is the number one question readers would have for any craft blogger, “Where do you find the time to craft?” And as any craft blogger will tell you (especially those with children and such) that it takes a lot of work to find that time. But, it can be done. And guess what???? It doesn’t have to have a negative effect on the other areas in your life.

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There’s this one word that comes to mind. It’s a word that doesn’t make me want to jump up and dance though. My flesh hates it. It screams when it hears this word (and not in a good way). That word is DISCIPLINE. Here are some of the definitions of that word:

-punishment

-obsolete: instruction

-a field of study

-training that corrects, molds, or perfects mental faculties or moral character

-control gained by enforcing obedience or order

-orderly or prescribed conduct or pattern behavior

-self control

-a rule or system of rules governing conduct or activity

Ick. Doesn’t sound fun, but as most of us know, having discipline in our lives helps us out. When we were little, our parents “disciplined” us when we did something bad. Now that we are adults, we are the ones responsible for our actions. It is our choice whether to eat healthy or not. It is our choice to go to bed on time and get rested or to stay up late and wake up sleep deprived (of course, this is a general statement. Sometimes we have to stay up late and it’s not our choice, but work with me here :).

My father and husband have taught me the most about having self discipline. My dad wrestled in high school and college and the discipline from that really stuck with him. We are all amazed he never ended up in the military! He was always very disciplined with his schedule, what he ate, spending time with God, spending time with us, etc. Then my husband came along and the military helped him really embrace self discipline. I am always amazed at how my husband stays on track in all areas of his life. Spiritually, physically, mentally, financially, and whatever else you can think of. He amazes me.

He tells me this quote every time I hesitate to not stay on track with my new schedule, “Successful people do what others won’t.” It might be just something tiny one day, but add it up over the course of a year and it’s a lot more. For example, if you have the discipline to read 10 pages a day, it estimates to about 1 book a month. If you do this each month, you will have read 12 books in a year. Those 10 pages a day don’t seem like much, but look at how much it equates to over a year?

Discipline is a key factor in time management. This is the first key in my new schedule. I have to be disciplined to make it work. At the end of every week, I sit down and write down a tentative schedule for the next week, along with goals. Having a child, I know that things can change quickly, so that is why my schedule is tentative. For example, I will write down I want to work out on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, but my goal will be to work out 3 times that week regardless of what day. That way I don’t feel like a failure if I didn’t do exactly how I wrote it in my schedule.

When we moved, one of the biggest things I implemented for my daughter and I was eating times. I know. I’m bad with that. I was always a snacker. But my daughter started to get like that saying she was hungry all the time. I was tired of making food and here not eating it, so we eat breakfast when she gets up, have snack at 10, eat lunch at 12:30. Then she naps around 1. If she doesn’t sleep long, she can have a snack when she gets up and then dinner at 6. Then we are done eating. It’s made a world of difference! And saves me time in the kitchen. But, I’m sure most of you already do that.

I also implemented an exercise schedule for myself. It helps so much. For me it’s not about losing weight (which I wouldn’t mind losing a little bit), but for my health. I want to be in good shape, to be able to keep up with my daughter, to help her learn sports (which I loved when I was little and hope she does too), and more. I want to feel good. I don’t want to get out of breath after a trip up a long flight of stairs. Get my drift?

I scheduled all of our social events and stuff too. We have church Sunday mornings then go out to eat with friends. I have a Bible study I attend on Mondays. We have Officers Christian Fellowship on Tuesdays. Then there are birthday parties to throw in, date nights, concerts, etc. I will not sabotage my relationships this go round.

So that kind of brings in another point of scheduling. What are your priorites??? This move I decided to change my priorities some. Family has always been first. Plain and simple. I wanted to be a stay at home mom and raise my daughter and take care of the house and my husband. That is first. Not changing. God is a main priority too. I spend time with Him first thing in the morning (and if that doesn’t work out, usually nap time, and if that doesn’t work out, I fit it in somewhere). Having God a main part of my life just makes my life so much better. I just can’t even put it into words. But, like with anyone, I have to make time for that relationship.

I have decided to put crafts a lot farther down on the list for the next few months. Don’t worry, I’m not going anywhere, but I will not be posting like crazy. Just other things need priority. And that brings me to this “There are seasons for everything.” For those of you with young children, that might not be a season of life where you are able to do all the things you want to do, especially crafting. But, we all know, they grow up. They become independent and won’t need you as much. There are many things in life that change it up. That is just a part of this whole living thing. Don’t get discouraged though!!!!!!! Take what time you have and make the best out of it.

Maybe you have more time than you think as well. How many of us have a hard day, put the kids to bed, and just veg in front of the tv? Then after a few shows (which is a few hours), make it to bed? How much time spent was just watching some show that probably won’t add very much to your life? We have decided to cancel cable recently. We found ourselves falling into that trap. It became very clear to us when the church we attended in Jacksonville did challenge to give up media (the stuff that we don’t need, like watching sit com shows or browsing the internet for nothing) for a month. Wow. We found a lot of extra time in our life. I’m still not the best in this area, but I am working on it because I saw what a difference it made in our lives. We all deserve our down time, don’t get me wrong. We need time to sit and relax, but I think it can turn into a bad habit (ie couch potato or computer potato comes to mind).

And these are just some of the things I have learned and personal decisions I have made. Everyone is different. We are all at different points in our life with different things going on and all. It’s just about honestly looking at our life and deciding what is priority, having discipline to keep those things in priority, follow through on our decisions, keep flexible, and remember that seasons come and seasons go. Keep what is important to you, important to you. If that makes sense :)

Here are some book recommendations that might be good to read if you are interested:

“Margin” by Richard Swenson

“The Slight Edge” by Jeff Olson

Now, as with any book, read it and take what applies to your life. But, there are some things to learn in them.

Stay positive ladies!!!!! And I’ll see you soon with some crafty stuff :)

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Comments

  1. says

    SWEET post!! Really glad you shared. (and glad you put it out there plainly: discipline is surely the biggest factor!!) …somehow I’ve learned it with money and even eating/not-eating, but managing my TIME is one of the hardest disciplines of all. So, THANKS for spurring us on!! <3

  2. says

    This is a wonderful and thoughtful post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this with us all. As I “grow up” I am finding that everything we enjoy takes a huge amount of discipline but it is so worth it when you see how great life is with it (discipline that is). I wouldn’t have it any other way.

  3. says

    Lovely post. Many of my friends also ask where I find the time to craft and blog with a young daughter, and it’s definitely all about prioritizing. My house isn’t the cleanest house around, and I don’t hit the gym everyday (or every week for that matter), but I wouldn’t trade that time with my sewing machine for anything!

  4. says

    Great words! I’m not a busy blogger, but have been dealing with scheduling and work as a work at home mommy also. The word “discipline” has been coming out in my quiet times lately. Too funny how God even uses blogs to encourage us =) May God bless you and your family!

  5. says

    love to hear what you have to say Jessica, it really makes a lot of sense. I’m glad you’re chosing to put other things higher up on your priority list than crafting. I always try and take a step back and analyze what me and my family need. I’m having a great time giving more to my husband and family now. Thanks for sharing this…

  6. says

    I find your blog very encouraging and inspiring. Thanks for being open about the things that it takes to make it all work – I look forward to whatever posts may come :-)

  7. says

    This was a wonderful post. I have been struggling with this for quite some time now and after reaidng this have realized I am a couch potato and a computer potato. I will definately try to read those books that you suggested and see if I can make a serious change for my own mental stability. As of today I am vowing to leave the computer and television and focus on what I want to accomplish in life. Thank you for this insightful post.

  8. says

    “a season for everything”: definitely true. i always have seasons of sewing and seasons where there is very little sewing happening (like right now with a third little one on the way and two crazies running around the house!), but knowing that things change quickly and time flies by helps me keep my perspective.

  9. says

    Hi Jessica,
    A very interesting and inspirational post, which made alot of sense, especially the bit about spending too much time in front of the TV because you think you need to relax. Thank you for sharing your thoughts….
    Vicky

  10. says

    Lovely post. I totaly agree on discipline and that part about veging in front of TV (I watch TV 1one hour/week).
    If you ask me, stay at home mums should have plenty of time (24h/day). Good thing you have that privilege. Where I come, that is not an option, because one salary just wouldn’t do. So if you work 8h + 2h for driving, 8h sleep, 1h for cooking, 1h eating, walk the dog 2h, you have left only 2h/day.

  11. says

    Thank you very much for posting. Usually I’m a ‘lurker’ on most blogs but I really just wanted to say thanks. I’ve been wanting to become a more regular blogger, and a craft blogger with my personal life thrown in there a bit.

    I don’t have children yet (though I am student teaching, so it’s almost like having kids!) and I can’t find time for it. Now I will have to MAKE time :)

  12. says

    Thanks so much for sharing this! I often get overwhelmed with not being able to find the time and am so encouraged by your experience. I like the idea of scheduling your week and am encouraged to add time with God back into my schedule! Your words have blessed me today.

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