Recently, my mommy started a new part time job in the neighborhood working in an antique and home goods store. She really likes it cause she gets to talk with all sorts of people while hanging around lots of pretty stuff all day. Plus, she can afford a few more treats for me and my Little friends!
However, when she started, she was really stressed out. She enjoyed her new job, but worried about me and helping the Littles get adopted. How was she going to do it all? Would she find a balance or become a big ball of stress? Was she doomed to becoming a high strung workaholic who only calmed down after copious amounts of chocolate?
No! I wouldn’t let her fall to such depths. So I sat her down and we had a heart to heart, puppy to mommy. I gave her some great tips that helped her find a balance-she liked them so much she suggested I share them all with you!
1. Embrace small chunks of time. Its kind of funny that the leader of Littles Land never fully appreciated little bits of time-an hour here, two hours there. But changing your thinking to really control those few hours at a time can make you more productive than you were when you had a full day ahead of you! Knowing you only have 45 minutes forces you to be more focused, while not working 24/7 on one big project allows your creativity to recharge.
2. Be flexible. I don’t mean stretch until you touch your toes. I mean don’t get stuck in one method of thinking. You won’t be able to do two things every night, five nights in a row. Some nights you’ll get five projects completed, others may be too busy to get one finished-that’s okay! At the end of the day, as long as it gets done on time, who cares if it was finished exactly according to the schedule?
3. Schedule playtime (or snuggle time!). This is very important! Beyond letting the loved ones in your life know how much you care about them, down time helps you be more productive. Sounds silly, right? Not so! Its easier to focus and push through some of the tougher challenges when you know fun time is in just a few hours!
4. Use a calendar. Writing down what needs to be done in a place you can see it makes tasks feel manageable. Its also handy to be able to see when your playtime is. And you won’t forget important tasks-which would then intrude on fun time. Boo!
5. Respect the boundaries you set. If Thursday is a day for writing blogs, write the blogs-even when your sister calls to chat for a few hours. If you set the three o’clock hour for bonding with the puppy (very important!), then walk and play with the puppy. Unless it is an absolute emergency, whatever is written on the schedule is the most important thing for that time slot. And be fully present in what you’re doing-don’t walk the puppy but be focused on the work To-Do list. Don’t daydream about your time off when you need to get work done.
Its all a balancing act between what needs to be done and what you want to get done. And its something that even my mommy has to work on, a little every day. But with enough foresight-and a lot of puppy love-she’s getting there!
How do YOU find a balance between work and play? I’d love to hear your tips, and pass them on to my Mommy!