Friday, January 29, 2016

Getting organized ~ Clearing the cobwebs!

I feel like today I am doing a mental spring cleaning. I don't know what the deal was with this January but it was not the restorative fresh start I was hoping for. And I know I am not the only one I have had friends post of FB about feeling writers or artists block. And one of my fav gals wrote this post "Just One Thing" all about it. Her new goal is to get "one thing" done each day.

Yesterday I took her up on the challenge and got two things done. One load of laundry and went through some bins of fabric she had given me. 

All too often I agree to do something without looking at my schedule. And it bites me in the butt sometimes. Because I do not have a traditional job I fall in to the trap of thinking I don't have that much going on. Which is completely untrue. I just do not have set hours to do all the stuff I am doing. 

This idea of where does my time go? has been gnawing at me all month. A couple weeks ago I did some research on how other people who do not have traditional 9-5 sort of lives keep themselves organized. I found lots of good advise and ordered two new notebooks that I am hoping will help me get my act together and not loose track of all the things I need (and want) to be doing. They have both arrived and I have spent a chunk of my day clearing out the mental cobwebs and writing it all down.  

The first is called a Planner Pad and it is a daily planner / list / to do / goals etc. My computer calendar is great for appointments and big blocks of time, but I was having a hard time tracking on-going projects and ideas. The hope is that this will help me be more focused on the things I am working on. There are all sorts of pics online for how people are using the Planner Pad as a tool to stay organized and focused. I bought the "start anytime" version. It is un-dated so that you can pick when you start and write in what works for you. I am officially starting 2/1/16 aka Monday. I have already filled in all the big ideas and appointments I know about as well as travel plans for my husband and family. For me the act of writing things down helps me remember it more. Also when I am on the computer I get sucked in by email and such and get distracted from my tasks. I want to have less screen time and more time doing things IRL. 

Blank Page for any type of project.
The second notebook is 110 Creations, a Sewist's Notebook. This one is specifically for tracking sewing project ideas. And it is flipping brilliant. If you buy it, read the "how to use this book" page. It tells you about all the features and how she set it up to help you succeed. You write down all your project info / ideas. And you can use it as a to-do or wish list or actual log of projects you are working on or need to do. I start sewing project notebooks all the time. But then I start writing grocery lists and to-do lists in them and it all goes awry. There are sections for apparel, mens, and any sort of sewing. There is a master list so you can make an index of your projects and a pattern inventory so you can take this with you when shopping and not re-buy stuff.

I have been kicking around a bunch of projects and this creates a place for me to put them all down. I have already written in eight projects that I want to get going on. 

Women's apparel page.  

In this same organizing vein I found some ideas for organizing patterns and supplies that I am going to implement. 

My studio is actually fairly organized but it is small so I really have to stay on top of it. And I have to be willing to part with things from time to time. 

If I don't put things back where they belong I do not have the space I need to work. 

All this makes me feel much better. But it is like Weight Watchers or keeping a budget (both of which I do) it only works if you do it. Since I know that writing things down, taking time to plan and reflect are things that make me feel good and lead to being more successful with my goals I am pretty certain these new habits will stick. 

I did not make any specific New Year's resolutions this year. Which is odd because I usually do. But it appears some new habits have found their way to me. Maybe this way will be more successful than a typical resolution. 

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