Prioritizing the View & Getting Just One thing Done

This morning, as I was journaling, I could see rays of sun peeking out from behind the mountains.  I cut my journaling short to put on boots and go out for a hike.  It's still feeling like fall and I wanted to capture some images of Cordova this week on our slow slide towards Winter.  

It was the sun that drew me out for a hike first thing, and for once I didn't succumb to postponing exercise for later in the day (or not at all.)  And since today is not a clinic day, I had the freedom to actually do that.  

So often, even when my time is my own, I am a slave to self made to-do lists.

I'm not sure if that tendency is going to change anytime soon, so I'm trying to make it work for me.  If exercise, writing, journaling and solitude outings are on the list then they're much more likely to get done.  In fact I'm deeming them important enough that they aren't just on a list, but in a daily rotation which is currently taking the form of popsicle sticks in jars.

I have one jar of sticks for daily repeatable tasks and one jar for weekly repeatable tasks.  Usually whatever I have to do for Woolen Travels or Snow Capped Yarns or myself fits in to one of the larger categories on those sticks.

Here's another view of the Heney Range this morning.

 Really if taking an hour out of my day gives me this view, why wouldn't I prioritize that everyday?

  So often we are our own worst enemies.

 

heney range-Cordova-Alaska-Autumn-woolen travels.jpg

 Since I've been on a productivity kick lately, as I try to figure out how to manage working for myself, I've been seeking out all sorts of tips and tricks from successful folks out there.  

I tried out a new tactic today that came from a recent post from Tim Ferris' blog.  8 Step Process for Maximizing Efficacy.   Here it is distilled down, check out the link to his blogpost for the real thing.

        1. Wake up at least an hour before you have to turn your computer on. "Email is the mind killer."
        2. Sit down with paper & a pencil
        3. Make a list of the 3-5 things that you most need to do, the things causing you the most anxiety and discomfort are likely the most important
        4. For each item ask yourself two questions:  If this is the only thing I accomplish today will I be satisfied with my day?  Will accomplishing this make all the other to-do's easier to do or less important.
        5. Choose one item that you answered yes to and focus on that for a 2-3 hr block of time or until it's done.

        So I did this today.  I have a knitting pattern that's ready to be test knit.  I've been procrastinating on getting it out there and taking the final steps.  As of this morning I thought it was pretty close to being ready, but in reality it took 5 solid hours to get from where I was, to actually having the pattern & the yarn in the mail and on its way to the test knitters.  

        Part of my problem is that I'm a terrible judge of how long any task will take and more often than not it takes much much longer than I had anticipated.  I am eternally optimistic about how much I can get done in one day.  Generally this leaves me feeling frustrated and behind because I can never do all I set out to do.  

        So I was happy to try out a new method today.  I did get that one step entirely completed, as well as a handful of smaller tasks and I do feel a little lighter because of it.  Thanks Tim Ferriss!  

        And I also got to start my day with a little sweat and views like this.  

        Here's to the journey of figuring out how to take care of ourselves while growing our creativity and our businesses!

        If you have any creative productivity links or systems you use please share in the comments, I'd love to hear about them!