Friday, September 4, 2009

Tips to last a lifetime

In the last two postings, I shared the three steps that Elizabeth Fenner developed to help make time for fun in your schedule (“More Free Time,” Real Simple, July 2008, pgs. 147-152). At the end of the article, Fenner gives some tips to help you rearrange your schedule and your life and to make sure that you stick to it. 1) Take a tiny bite out of the task you most often avoid, even if you spend just one minute. When you realize how much anxiety is wasted over nothing, you will find the energy you need to get the task out of the way entirely. 2) Fight procrastination. A recent Real Simple poll reveals that six out of 10 women confess that procrastination is a major reason why they don’t get their work done. Put up a Post-it note that asks, “Are you inventing things to do to avoid what is important?” 3) Break projects onto pieces. 40 to 90 minutes is the optimal amount of time to spend on any one task. After that you need to schedule a break. If you have scheduled start and stop times, you are less apt to allow one task fill your day. 4) Take rest seriously. Sleep deprivation (having less than 8 hours of sleep per night) can make you feel more scattered, causing you to think you don’t have enough time to get everything done. Getting the proper amount of sleep to feel rested makes you better able to focus and get your work done. 5) Don’t worry, be happy. Fenner cites some additional statistics from another Real Simple reader pole, this time on happiness and they found that 65% of women who say they are “very happy” make time for themselves while only 39% of the women who are “somewhat happy” give themselves the same benefit. She concludes that “The odds are good that the more time you make for yourself, the happier you will be.”

We missed many of our regulars at the De-clutter Club meeting last night. We reviewed individual successes, discussed Suzanne Neilson’s presentation from Thursday night and shared some ideas for where to get started and how to stay motivated. I am on vacation from September 6 through September 14. I will be back in the library and back to posting to the blog on September 15. Enjoy your Labor Day holiday and if anyone else feels like posting some information on the blog, be my guest. You are all authorized.

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