I often get asked on Instagram how I manage to get so much done. People seem to think that i’m some sort of superwoman being able to maintain our lovely home (I do all the cooking, cleaning, DIY, gardening….you name it, I do it) at the same time as raising two little people & soon to be working part time in PR/social media.
I honestly don’t think that my life is too hectic, or that I do anything extra ordinary. I just have a system in place that works for me & the main reasoning behind this is that I am super PRODUCTIVE. Joe always says ‘you are the laziest most productive person I have ever met’. I am either going at 200mph OR 0mph, there is absolutely no in-between. That’s why when I am ‘getting shit done’ as I rather affectionately call it, I need to make sure i’m giving 100%.
I recently blogged on 4 tips to a tidier home (see here) plus recorded a vlog as part 2 of these tips, on how quickly I can turn my house from a toddlers dumping ground to Instagram perfect showhome (see here).
I’ve come up with these top tips for how to be more productive –
1. Do things the night before –
Make your lunch set out an outfit for the next day, put on the dishwasher or a load of laundry. You’ll find that your morning will go smoother leading to a happier, less stressed you which will ultimately lead to more productivity throughout the day.
It’s awful waking up feeling so overwhelmed that you just want to curl up in a ball & stay under the covers all day? Those dirty dishes in the sink, the laundry in the washing basket & those little mouths that need feeding won’t just go away unfortunately.
Waking up to a morning where the dishes have been washed/put away, the laundry has been on over night ready to be popped in the tumble drier & the kids bowls are out ready for their cornflakes is MUCH nicer.
2. Tell yourself you can’t have X until Y/Z is completed –
I do this ALL the time….i’m dying for a cup of tea but I know in the back of my mind i’ve got things to do. So I tell myself that once i’ve finished folding up the laundry, put it away then wiped the kitchen worktops that only then can I pop the kettle on. I even do it for things like needing a wee….i’ll reward myself with a toilet break once i’ve completed my task. Call me crazy, but it works!
3. Write lists –
I am a serial list writer. I have lists all over the place of things ‘to do’, shopping lists, anything to remind myself. I could easily write one every day as I find they help me so much to ‘get shit done’. I always find ticking things off my list quite satisfying as you can see how much you are achieving….even little things like taking the bin out (which is my husbands job but lets not even go there…).
4. Don’t expect too much –
I am definitely guilty of this. I set expectations too high but then end up feeling stressed & deflated when I can’t do everything. At the end of the day, I am not superwoman & neither are you, so that list of 100 things that you need to get done by midday is just not going to happen. Set yourself a handful of realistic & managable goals then work through them.
5. Routine routine routine –
Pretty self explanatory but get yourself into one. I couldn’t swear by routine more if I tried in every single aspect of my life (especially with my little rascals!). Once you get into a routine it’ll start to become habit & you’ll find yourself not even realising your doing it, plus it’ll gradually take less time. Also making sure you have specific places for things means that once you are in your routine, you’ll automatically put things away there without thinking plus be able to find them again just as quickly.
6. Stop multi-tasking –
Obviously some things require a bit of multitasking but I find doing this too much leads to nothing being done properly. If I am half way through hoovering then I stop to mow the grass, then go back to hoovering…it just isn’t going to work, i’ll miss bits & end up doing a bad job. Focus on one thing at one time.
7. Be positive –
My worst job is definitely cleaning the bathrooms. I hate it. But, if I put a smile on my face, an image of sparkling taps in my mind plus some music on my iPhone, I find that an unenjoyable task becomes that teeny bit better. It’s all about the frame of mind….
8. Get rid of the ‘don’t have enough time’ excuse –
This may sound totally harsh, but, if you’ve got time to sit & watch Hollyoaks every evening then you totally have time. If you genuinely believe that you don’t have time then that’s fair enough, but you have to weigh up need to have the things that your making excuses for (e.g. a clean house, organised cupboards & so on) OR your need for ‘downtime’ (which I totally understand is essential). What means more to you? I know that i’m the type of person that can’t relax until everything is ‘just so’, so i’d rather wait until everything is done before anything else.
9. Give yourself 5 minutes –
It’s amazing what you can achieve in 5 measily minutes which you’d normally waste away browsing Pinterest. I regularly do this with my husband & Elsa to try to get them to get their arses in gear. I’ll say ‘right, we have 5 minutes….how much can we get done in that time?’, set an alarm on my phone, whack up the music & GO GO GO. You’ll automatically find yourself darting across the lounge at the same time as picking up stray toys at supersonic speed. It turns it into a game which makes it quite fun.
10. Do things as you see them –
I spoke about this during my recent Q&A vlog (see here).
If you walk past an overflowing laundry basket = put it in the washing machine & turn it on.
If you sit on the sofa & notice you could make a blanket out of the amount of dog/cat fur covering it = get out the hoover.
If you look across the lounge & an out of place unplump pillow is annoying you = get up & give it a squidge. .
I’m sure you get where i’m coming from but this will honestly become like second nature eventually. I’m constantly walking around doing ‘stuff’ without realising it.
Why don’t you give it a go? I’d love to know if any of you guys have any tips that I could adopt.
Love, Charlotte x