Day 4 of the Blogging from A to Z April challenge. Today’s topic: decisions.
I work fulltime. I have a kid to chase after half the week. I try to exercise several evenings a week. I have various hobbies: writing, reading, crocheting, looking up family genealogy stuff. I love wandering around on random car trips, taking pictures of scenery. I need time to sit and relax after chasing students all day. I love to bake. And then there’s sleeping.
As Chuck Wendig so eloquently put it, “I am afforded the same 24 hours that you are. I don’t get 30 hours. Stephen King doesn’t have a magical stopwatch that allows him to operate on Secret Creepy Writer Time. You have a full-time job? So do a lot of writers. Kids? So do a lot of writers. Rampant video-game-playing habit? Sadly, so do a lot of writers. You want time, snatch it from the beast’s mouth. And then use it.”
But how to use that time? I don’t have a TV. I rarely watch shows or movies on the computer, and if I do I’m multitasking and crocheting while I watch. (I seriously advise everyone to get rid of your TV. It really does make you more productive.) Baking is usually done with my kid, so that’s getting two birds with one stone as well. And I’ve found I can get by on six hours of sleep a night, as long as once or twice a week I can get a full seven-to-eight hours.
Having so much to do means I have to multitask when it comes to writing too. I kick around story ideas for months sometimes, waiting until I have them all worked out in my head, before writing them down, so that every moment counts.
And sometimes I just say “screw it” and do what I want, regardless of what I should be doing. I’ve found over the years that this approach works best for me; I’m most productive and creative when I want to be doing something, not when I feel obligated to do it.
What about you? How do you allocate your day, and how do you find extra time to do what you want instead of just what you have to?
I think it’s very hard when you have kids that is why you have them when you are younger, it’s the energy thing. Mornings are best for me, I am more positive, rested and creative. In college I could never do all-nighters, would just get up very early to study.
I’m finding that 10 pm til 1am seems to be working for me lately. We’ve got five kids at home and usually its impossible before ten to get much done. Since one of our kids is only three months old tomorrow, he still makes us get up at any time of the night. This often gives me time at six am or so to sit with him and type out something. That leaves a pretty short night sometimes, but, hey, you can sleep when you’re dead.
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