I am a professional author. Being an author is akin to being an entrepeneur, or a small business owner. I am also a small business operator. Anyone who has ever ventured into business for themselves know it’s no easy road.
On one hand it’s good to be boss, making the decisions. As hard as I’ve worked for others, I work that much harder for myself or our business. On the other hand, you know the one that gets you in trouble? Owning your own business puts all the responsibilities on your shoulders. there is no one to blame because something didn’t get finished except me. There is no one to blame because the records weren’t kept accurately, and when tax time comes the receipts are faded, not recorded, or missing.
I am terrible at record keeping and one of my goals is fixing this problem. It’s a matter of laziness most of the time. Twenty seconds to record the information in a ledger, or even a note on my smart phone will save a world of trouble later. But in the moment, I stuff the receipt in my purse and carry on telling myself “I’ll do it all at the end of the day.”
How many of you know that it never happens at the end of the day? Sadly it’s true and at the end of the month, I’m scrambling to even remember what the receipts were for. This is definitely an area I need to improve.
Time management is another. Not only am I working on building our business, I’m working on building my writing career as a professional author. Two sixty hour a week jobs that are demanding and nerve-wracking at times. Truthfully there aren’t enough hours in the day!
Looking at the basic requirements of what has to be done, what needs to be done and what can wait is a crucial management tool. Typically I lay out what has to be done for the week, then list the needs to be done, and if it’s not overwhelmingly long by then add some of the this can wait items. Sad to say I have a running list all the time and new things are added daily, sometimes in multiples.
Creating a manageable schedule is my current project. When I made my list of everything that needs to be tackled, and everything that is demanding my time I came up with three feasible solutions.
- I sneak into Biolabs and make myself three clones, hoping and praying I don’t get caught because I can’t afford 16 million a piece for the clones. There are several problems with this: The money issue, the cost is prohibitive, as would b e the fines if I got caught. The threat of jail time – I really don’t have twenty years to sit in a jail cell, I have things to do! There are innate problems with the clones themselves, if exact DNA is reproduced, then I’d have three more bosses – like I need that! Certain receptors would have to be turned off, as I don’t intend to share the hubs. It’s hard enough to get his attention now much less compete with three more women. Three more crafty, clever, sexy women. I’d have to cat fight myself, and if they know the same moves I do, then it could get really complicated really fast. I’d have to change their DNA slightly; making one really good at doing housework, hmm I’ll have to go get a saliva sample from someone else for that one. I’d make one super business minded and brilliant at time management. I”m undecided on the assigned tasks for the third. It’s just a matter of how much other stuff I could get her to do.
- I figure out how to roam the foam through quantum physics, and employ time travel. Bear with me, it’s doable! All I need to do is go back a couple of days while everyone is asleep and tackle the stack of work that needs to be handled. I need a nuclear reactor, a Tesla coil, and another place to take my work to so I don’t run into myself. OH, and I’d need a special watch that wasn’t affected by the traveling process. Then flash back to the present time and whala! It’s all handled and managed. The problem with that, is acquiring my own reactor. I think the government officials might show up wanting to know why I have nuclear materials and shut me down, possibly leaving me trapped a week ago! NO! Absolutely not gong to risk that!
- I face reality and accept that I have too many irons in the fire, and will have to set some thing aside.
The first two options seem much more fun to me, but I also have to work within the law, and the laws of science. DARN!
In an effort to motivate myself I have come to the conclusion that time management is a futile effort! That’s right you heard me, it’s futile. Let’s be honest here, do you seriously think I’m going to lay down my dreams and goals at this time?
Clock time is irrelevant! We are all given the same 24 hours in a day. Clock time dictates 60 seconds per minute, 60 minutes per hour, 24 hours in a day, etc.
Real time is mental. NO, seriously it is! Think about it, time flies when you’re having fun. It drags when you are sitting in the doctor’s office. the cruel hands of Fate operate in the real-time realm; changing that light to red when you have to be at a meeting in ten minutes and it would take you 15 if you made every green light. The union code of doctor’s everywhere dictates wait time, which is actually a suspended state in time where it stretches the time space continuum without completely disrupting it. the converse to this is the places that cause the speeding up effect, such as at the children’s playground when you’re trying to wear them out so they will take a nap.
There are three ways to spend our time: thoughts, conversations and actions. Not counting sleep of course. Regardless of the type of business you own, your work will be composed of these three items.
As an entrepreneur, or an author, you may be frequently interrupted or pulled in different directions. It’s impossible to eliminate interruptions, but you do get to decide on how much time you’ll spend on them and how much time you’ll spend on the thoughts, conversations and actions that will lead you to success.
There is one time management aid that I have found to be indispensible – coffee. It multiplies productivity, soothes the savage morning beast, and allows you to actually engage in conversations without them turning into fights. Otherwise my irons in the fire may be used for branding irons.
What do you use to manage your time? Do you struggle with getting more out of each day? Do you have a set routine that you are happy with? If you do please share! You don’t want me to go to jail for breaking in to make clones do you?
Write on my friends, write on!