3 Tips To Get Things Done - For Creatives
Many people wonder what the behind the scenes are like for a full-time artist. Honestly, it’s a lot of administrative and organizational work. I’m lucky to have worked as a government employee in Canada (my past life) – and I got many years worth of how to organize other people’s projects. So here are my top three recommendations when it comes to organizing yourself and getting things done – especially if you have a creative mind.
First, I love, love, LOVE my Passion Planner. I tried a digital calendar but I quickly learned that if it is not in front of me and tangible, I can easily ignore it or swipe it away. Writing my list of responsibilities on paper is concrete and holds me accountable. I also love that this planner offers an undated version so if you skip a week, a month – or a year (guilty!) – you can stop and start up whenever it is convenient for you. The planner is handy because it breaks the day up into 30 min increments. I enjoy looking back at my week and getting the satisfaction of seeing how much I’ve accomplished.
For projects, I’ve recently discovered the Kanban Board method. It is a visual method of organizing every single task required in a project. First you split your board into four sections - one section is what needs to get done this quarter, then this week, then today and finally what is done. In a nutshell, you write every task onto post it notes and stack them all together on the first section of the board. It is fun to move the post-it’s around and push myself to get things into the ‘done’ section. After doing my Kanban board for the quarter, my anxiety, overwhelm and lack of direction lift significantly. It’s magic!
The last method I want to share is called the Pomodoro Method. Being self-employed can be very distracting. No one is expecting anything from you. The temptation to procrastinate is real. This method is a way of managing your time and keeping you focused. It consists setting your timer for 25 mins and zoning in on one task. You get a 5 minute break once the clock rings and start again for 25mins. You can read more about it here. This has been a breakthrough method for me! I don’t use this when I’m being creative – this only works for me when I’m doing admin work or things that I am not particularly fond of doing.
Have you had any success with these methods or others that you recommend? Please share! I love learning the art of focus and I’m always curious about how other people get things done.