3 Ways to Get it All Done: Time Management for Creatives

Christina Karin
Photo courtesy of Christina Karin

Having trouble getting it all done?  We’ve all been there.  Most designers are very right brain, creative people. We struggle with distractions, BSOS (bright shiny object syndrome), and wanting to create rather than do the “work”.

Since we’ll never get a 25 hour day, here are 3 tips for getting more done in less time.

Re-think the use of your cell phone.

Your phone probably rings/beeps/texts/emails 50 times a day but that doesn’t  mean that you should answer it every time.  If you do,  I’ll never get any actual work done.

We’ve probably all experienced a day where we felt busy but seemed to get nothing accomplished.  Don’t mistake “busyness” for accomplishment. You don’t need to jump every time you beep – even though you may think you do.

If you’re really honest, most every call (even from a prospective customer) can wait a half a day to be answered.  And remember, turn off the beep so you can think in peace!

Focus time is your friend.

When was the last time you concentrated on one task exclusively for two hours?  No background TV, no phone, no emails – nothing. We know it’s not easy. But it is incredibly effective.

More often than not, multi-tasking simply doesn’t work as well as blocking out time for specific tasks. Though it’s not true for everyone, it seems like our brains don’t work as well when we try to do too much at once, it can kill the creative flow.

Here’s a challenge for you to try. Two days this week, block out two hours of uninterrupted “focus time”. During these two hours, turn off your phone and internet and concentrate on new products, design, or something that takes some brain power. You don’t need to know exactly what you’ll work on when you block the time, just pick your tasks that day.

Your computer’s home page.

Think about what pops up when you start your computer. Are you tempting yourself with celebrity news? Shoe shopping? Funny videos? If you’re not disciplined enough to ignore these things , set your page to something boring.

If you’re worried you’ll be missing out on the latest fashion news, just block time for mindless surfing. If you’re being disciplined with your time, you deserve a break to enjoy some brain candy!

How are handling time management?  Are your days truly productive?

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Jane Hamill

Jane Hamill is the founder of Fashion Brain Academy and the creator of several online trainings for apparel and accessories designers, including “20 Up” Marketing Course for Designers and “How to Start a Fashion Business: New Designer Program”.

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