Friday, September 27, 2013

Three Tips for Managing Your Day

I've been reading about time management, routines, creativity, and schedules. This week I altered my daily schedule, and, what do you know, I accomplished more than usual. Felt better too!

So what did I do differently? Nothing much, but it made all the difference.

Here are three things you can do to take charge of your day.

1. Get centered.

For me, getting centered means inviting the Lord into my life.

After my family heads out the door, I read two chapters of the Bible (one from the Old Testament and one from the New Testament) followed by a prayer session. God wants us to come to Him. He loves it when we pray, when we rely on Him, when we study His word. This practice is vital to me. It sets the tone and keeps needless anxieties from taking over.


2. Write down one to three tasks that will move you closer to your goal.

I'm a writer. My goals usually revolve around my books. A sample of tasks I've tackled in the last six months includes:

Write two scenes.
Revise chapter thirteen.
Read chapters six through ten out loud.
Create two pages for mobile website.
Write Friday's blog post.
Email so-and-so about guest post.
Brainstorm possible turning points for upcoming book.

You might only be able to cross one of these tasks off your list. That's okay. Just move the other tasks to tomorrow's calendar. The important thing is creating movement in your project.


3. Set limits on your time wasters.

My time wasters are all Internet related. Facebook, in particular, can suck me in for way too long! All week I've been diligent about logging off in 10-15 minutes. Mission accomplished. I'm getting more done and feeling better about it!

These three steps give me a sense of control over my day. I feel better overall because I've placed my time into God's hands. I feel better at night because I made progress toward my goals. And I feel better about myself because I'm not turning to the Internet to fill a void in my life.

**For fun, head to Scott Belsky's website and check out his Clever Tip Jar Collection. I love the idea of clever tips--cash or ideas!**

What's your best tip for managing your day?

Have a terrific weekend!!


  1. These are great, Jill! And so important to spend time with God first thing.

    I hear you on the internet/social media thing. I've always been pretty good about managing my FB time until right before the ACFW conference. Now I'm back in the groove and I feel better about it!

    I do my networking in the mornings (and keep the timer set on my phone) and when time's up, I go to work on my WIP. I'll ck back in on FB, Twitter, Blog, throughout the day once in awhile, but when I'm tempted to linger I chide myself with "Okay. Books don't get written by spending time here." (Meaning my social media stuff.)

    Have a super weekend! :)

    1. So true, Cindy! Books don't get written there--good point! I love the idea of setting your phone timer. Great idea!!

  2. Great tips, Jill, and you are so productive.
    My biggest tip is getting up early. I find I get more done if I wake up, go to the gym and have my morning time with the Lord first. I can get most of my house straight after I drop the kids off and knock out the daily activities. By 1:30ish, I'm tired but I also say it's okay to have a little power nap to reenergize for the afternoon!

    1. I'm all about the power nap! We lead really busy lives--I know yours is nuts!--so it's important to get enough rest. :)

  3. I have to second Jess--my biggest tip is getting up early. It's the only way I can get stuff done. That and staying up late. So basically, I've had to tell sleep we're on a break. Sleep is still mad at me about that. As is my body and my energy level. :)

    Great tips, Jill!

    1. Poor sleep. It always gets neglected. :) Have a great weekend!

  4. I need to be better at monitoring the time suckers. I think I need to set a timer

    1. I love the idea of setting a timer! I might try it too! :)

  5. My tip would be - do the unpleasant bit first.

    I find that if I leave a nasty job undone, I'm less effective in everything. It hangs over me, radiating guilt.

    Get it done, and I feel SO much lighter in spirit!

  6. Maybe staying focused on what I want to accomplish? I usually have a few things and the rest of the day can be whatever. :-)


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