Tracee Lydia Garner published her first book at the age of twenty-three after winning the BET First Time Writer’s Contest. She’s been publishing ever since. She’s also a social worker and public speaker dealing with the issues that concern people with disabilities and the physical and attitudinal barriers they face. Learn more about Tracee and her books at her website/blog.
Time management: 5 Tips to do More with Your Time and Do It More Efficiently
At some point I learned a few tricks to get more done with less. We all have the same amount of time, but man, are some people using it better than the rest of us! Despite feeling pretty confident about my own ability to manage my time better, I’ve discovered there’s always more to learn. Here are some tidbits and a few new discoveries I’ve employed to make time work for me.
Take your own pictures for your Blog or other social media. We all have some sort of newsletter either as a writer or contributor or side hustle we enjoy. I was looking for pictures of words the other day for an exercise I give my students. I teach How to Write a Novel at the local college. When I couldn’t find something I liked and wanted that was free and clear (copyrights), I took my own. You can take your own pictures. You can even make extra money selling them to photo sites. Do your homework if you decide to do this.
DVR everything - I'm sorry I just can't do it anymore - sit through commercials or watch things in real time. I can’t believe I’ve had a DVR for about 7 years and really only recently started using it more purposefully. Now of course I’m getting spoiled, I can’t seem to watch anything that hasn’t been “recorded”. Can I also say that I’ve been cutting off the TV and when using the DVR you are especially “running” through the commercials? Doing that alone seems to have given me less of an opportunity to be wooed (coerced) by advertisers into buying something I just don’t need, which could really and truly affect your bottom line.
Note that with the DVR, if it’s something I really want to see and chat with friends/coworkers about the next day, then I just start the program 15-30 minutes into the show. You can still save time shaving off some minutes and finish at the same time as everyone else.
Make a Master List of all the foods you buy on a regular basis. Copy it (save it on your computer) but make a few copies of it and have it on your fridge or a drawer in the kitchen. You and your family can highlight or circle items, and then you’re ready to go.
Label it properly, put it away, and leave out the master to-do list - To cut down on clutter, which also reduces mental clutter and feeling overwhelmed, I’ve put away stacks and stacks of paper into folders that are properly labeled and then filed them away, thus freeing my desk up for space and comfort. Just keep a running list of things to do, front and center, put the rest away and only pull it out when you’re ready to work on that particular item. A timer can also help with this and a simple timer is available on your phone or computer.
Compose anything using talk to text My all-time-favorite and Newest Better Time Management Discovery is depressing that tiny little microphone picture to talk my lists, parts of my book, e-mails and other kinds of output. Part of this blog post was written using talk to text at 4:00 in the a.m. when insomnia sets in. I make lists and mostly write about 300 - 1000 words for my story with this little gizmo. It’s available on almost every phone, no matter your carrier or brand. Look for the little microphone button, just try it. Open an e-mail and speak, even tone and normal like conversing with a friend, that’s a friend with perfect hearing. There’s no reason to yell or enunciate your words (unless you have a thick accent) for the talking to texting feature on your phone, and you can spell out names if it doesn’t recognize some of the unusual ones.
There you go. Just a few things you might not have thought about. I can’t wait to see what new time management practices I’ll adopt in the year to come. Want more productivity and time management advice? I explore this topic in depth through a four-part series that appeared on my blog.
Despite her prestigious professional role, Allontis Baxter’s private life is in shambles. She’s just broken up with her no-good boyfriend, her adopted mother figure is dying in the hospital and now she’s been turned down in an attempt to adopt a child of her own. Plus, Allontis’s old flame Cole Parker has returned to their hometown from New York City, causing her dilemmas to multiply as old feelings are rekindled. What’s a successful and motivated nonprofit career woman to do?
When a series of chance encounters at work fling her into the middle of a mysterious scandal, Allontis realizes she’s caught up in a dangerous game that could send her chaotic life up in flames. Struggling to keep the pieces of her own life together while protecting those she loves, Allontis is forced to confront the true meaning of family and to face some demons of her own.