As I promised on Monday, here is how I got myself out of a monumental not-doing-anything slump.
This past Sunday, I knew I was going to have to get it back in gear. Saturday evening I told my family I was not going to church, and I set my alarm early.
The Great Slump Snapping
The alarm went off at 7. This is later than my normal time, but gave me a feeling of “sleeping in.” I grabbed a cup of coffee and made my way to my desk.
Clean off the desk
The desk has been gathering flotsam and jetsam for a week or so. I sorted through all of it, recycling and trashing liberally. There is a small folder of things I have to go through tomorrow during my regular desk time, but the desk is clear.
I knew the day was going to be a hot one, and I had plants waiting to go into the ground. So the next few hours I spent digging (and cursing clay) and planting my plants. I set up the watering timers and came inside. Next up shower and lunch.
Print the task list
Next I went out to Remember the Milk and completed those items I knew I had done. Then I printed the list, overdue tasks and all.
I started at the top of the list. I did the first task, which was to give the dog her heart worm medicine. Did that, came back to the office, checked it off and moved on to the next item. It was to send the email to the Brownie troop. Did that, moved on to the next.
I kept this up until I struck the big item: blog articles for the week. I sat down and wrote and revised for two hours, until it was time to make dinner.
Skip Ahead Temporarily
I had some down time during dinner prep, but not enough to refocus myself onto writing. So I knocked out some quick tasks further down in the list, knowing I would come back to writing later on.
Results of the Purge
This day of action has helped me get up and get through quite a few things on the list. All of my backlog and current day’s tasks were completed, leaving reading a book before bed.
But how do I keep this energy up? Here is what I have been trying this week.
Clear the projects
My project list needs pruning. I have a lot to do, but I’m very conscious of needing rest right now. So I have taken a look at the projects and put many on hold temporarily.
New Task Method
The task book has soured, and I am no longer following it. This week I will work from RTM and my all in one weekly planning form (available on my free stuff page). This is usually enough to help me get back in balance.
Use the body more, head less
I realized one of the reasons I was so productive when I was unemployed was that I was mixing body and mind tasks. I would work at my desk, then get up and do something physical for a while. This balance helped to give me a lot more energy. I’ve been spending way too much time in front of computers, so I am endeavoring to mix it up a bit more.
I don’t know how this is going to work in the end, but I do know it’s gotten me back on track.
Photo by Emery_Way