Sunday, August 26, 2012

On balancing multiple projects

Let's be frank here. I abhor the sound of my alarm clock and by abhor, I mean, the first thought that comes to my head when I hear it is Must. Go. Back. To. Sleep.
But lately, I've unearthed a novel appreciation for it when it comes to balancing multiple projects. I struggle with balance, that word so many articles are written about, that we all toss around like a prize we'll someday get. 
This past week, I realized that if I set an alarm for each project (say, 30 minutes or 2 hours), it enables me to use that time efficiently. Once the clock rings, time is up!
Now I realize that not everyone has an issue with focusing or procrastinating or anything else that permeates this status update/Tweet culture. But I have different weaknesses on different days. And well, this alarm clock, it just might be the key for now.

How do you balance multiple projects? Do you set time limits? Or just wait until certain tasks are finished? 


  1. I'm not that regimented. I just work when I can (I'm a working mom with 3 kids) and focus my energy and time on the project that is most pressing. Unless! I find myself particularly inspired to work on another for a little while. Ultimately super-muse moments rule. LOL

    You get the prize for short, to-the-point blog posts. Maybe one day I can achieve that. :P Thanks for visiting my blog. :)

  2. I think my alarm clock would be smashed by the end of the day...

  3. I feel like such a dummy. I set an alarm for fun things, like reading a good book for 30 minutes on the deck, then getting back to work. But you're so right. I should be setting alarm for how long I spend reading blogs, playing bubbleshooter, vacuuming. Seriously, I can get distracted so easily by simple staying on the deck watching the ducklings.

  4. I think I would learn very quickly how to turn the alarm off and keep going. I would feel better if one thing is completely finished before moving on to the next one.

  5. I do not know a single writer who does not have issues with procrastination and/or time. As for me, the alarm clock approach would/will/does work for awhile, but so much of creativity also depends on going with the flow and sometimes not being regimented. I have sort of a "loose" structure—loose enough to make sure I get things done, free enough to let the ideas flow.

  6. I should try that. Because it's so easy to get stuck on the one project you like and not get to the other things that NEED doing. (And I'm referring to writing and housework, respectively.) So if I set 1 hour aside for housework each day. Then when I'm done, go to the writing. Because if I do it the other way, I'll usually stay with the writing.

    Now that my kids are in school. I just might try that. Thanks.

  7. This sounds like a good idea. The trouble is, items on my to-do list almost always take longer than I think they will, so if I set an alarm, it will probably go off before I'm finished and I'll get frustrated!
    I hope this works for you :-)