I am really bad at time management out here in the studio. I always start my day trying to work on my various administrative duties - weight and tag newly dyed fiber, tag newly reskeined dyed yarn, check website for accuracy, take pictures of fiber/yarn, pay whatever bills are due, package and ship out online orders, etc. - thinking I will get them done quickly. If I can get the admin stuff finished then I can weave away to my heart's content.
In general, I enjoy the admin chores. Not all of them everyday but I feel accomplished when they are finished and don't hate the time they take. There is a routine and an order to them that feels satisfying. The problem is that they always manage to expand to fill all the available time. So I start out first thing in the morning on admin stuff and look up at 4 or 5 pm and realize there is no time left for what I really want to do which is weave.
Peggy and I were talking about this on our drive home from Destin, FL. We were there for the January Spin-In. The Spin-In was great, the weather, while not fabulous was also not horrible, our sales were wonderful and we had a great time seeing all our friends. Peggy's first suggestion for my time management problem was to set some alarms on my iPad so I would be reminded to stop and do some weaving during the day. That's not a bad idea but it seemed a bit rigid to expect myself to work in specific intervals even if I'm the one that gets to pick the intervals. I was looking for something slightly more flexible or maybe more human.
We came up with the best idea ever. What determines when I will change activities is needing to pee. Think about it. It happens repeatedly throughout the day. It can be put off for a while but not forever. It requires me to get up from whatever I'm working on and move. It is a totally logical break. And once I give myself permission to stop in the middle of something, there isn't much I can't stop in the middle of. Yes. I think I love this. And the added benefit is to encourage me to keep drinking water because no matter what I'm doing I don't want to do it for the rest of my life.
Today is day number three of this schedule and it's working great. This morning I arrived in the studio about 9:45 and started the day by putting things away. All the fiber we brought back with us from Destin has been sitting here and needed to be pulled out of the plastic bags and decoratively arranged in their baskets. The office box needed to be cleaned out and rearranged. The empty tubs got moved to the back porch so I can take them out to the trailer. The place is almost back together again. Next interval was spent working on the computer. I read and answered emails and followed up on the phone as needed. I read a couple of interesting articles about taking pictures of weaving and knitting projects. I read Franklin Habit's first message about our 19th Century Knit-Along.
The next interval was winding my Knit-Along yarn into a cake along with some handspun yarn I'm planning to use for a large shawl. And finally sitting down at my loom to weave on my current run of kitchen towels. Then I had lunch and I'm writing this blog.
I have not finished any of the various tasks, admin or otherwise, that I have sitting here but I have worked on all of them and feel very satisfied about it. I've gotten more weaving and more warp threading done in the last several days than I have in weeks.
I really think this going to work!