One thing I have to do periodically is revise my work at home schedule. My daily schedule changes often enough that I can’t stick with one for too long. Something happens and the old one quits working, and suddenly I’m scrambling to get anything at all done.
Such as right now. It’s a real push for me to get even half the work done I used to each day. A big part of that is having a very active 9 month old. It’s just not possible to care properly for her and get everything done in a day that I used to.
Add in that my husband now regularly has weekends off, when in all his old jobs he had to work most weekends. Complete change of routine there!
How Do I Change My Schedule?
Changing my schedule isn’t easy. It means changing habits too. I’m used to thinking of things in a particular way, and even when it’s not working I’m likely to keep thinking that way.
Fortunately, I have the previous schedule listing my various work activities already. Things such as blogging, blog commenting, article writing and so forth. If you want to work up a schedule, you need to figure these things out too, as well as about how much time you want to commit to each.
My goal has always been to get a lot of my blog posts written ahead of time. Something comes up I can still change the schedule, but I like to have posts done in advance. This hasn’t been happening of late because I used to do a lot of my blog post writing on weekends. That doesn’t work at all now. Too often we’re all but obligated to visit family or have some visiting us. It’s all not conducive to productivity.
This means I’m often scrambling to get something written. That’s not the way I like to write. So it’s time to rethink things.
Think About Productive Hours
I’ve always been a night owl. Mornings are not my friend. But at this particular point, nights haven’t been working so hot either. Something about a baby who doesn’t always sleep well, especially those nights when she decides to be bright eyed and bushy tailed and needy for four hours in the middle of the night.
Makes working at night a little less practical when I have to also get up in the morning to take my oldest to school.
So I also have to consider my next most productive hours. In this case, it’s defined as when can I get the baby to take a nap. Please? And then hope that it wasn’t one of the really tough nights where I’m considering a nap too.
Writing It Out
My schedule is one of the few things I do write or type out for my work. I keep going between typing it on a spreadsheet set up as a weekly calendar and writing it on paper. They both can work when I’m paying attention.
Writing it out helps by giving me something to focus on. I know exactly what I mean to be doing that day.
If I’m really getting going on a spreadsheet version, I can also add in the little things that aren’t regular enough for my regular schedule, but need doing on a particular day. That’s one thing I like pretty well.
Testing, Testing, 1, 2, 3…
Any schedule I write is nothing more than a best guess until I’ve tried it out, of course. There’s no way to be sure what will work until I try to work that schedule. Often enough I have to refine things as I realize one day has too much or too little going on.
The good part about scheduling is that it keeps me from neglecting various aspects of the work I need to be doing. It’s easy to just write and write and write and forget to do any marketing. Writing’s more fun for me. But it won’t get me anywhere, or at least not very quickly if I don’t market also.
What about you? Do you schedule your work or just wing it as best you can?