What are your dreams for 2014 and how are you going to work towards them this year?
This is a question I started asking myself during my holiday but by the time the holiday was over, instead of an answer, I had that ‘I don’t want to leave’ feeling.
Holding on to a holiday state of mind
During my ‘staycation’ I did lots of fun touristy things in Cape Town, spent time with family, baked, walked, took photos and drew. I didn’t worry about blogging, my business plans or my email inbox and as a result, I felt calmer and had more time to connect with the people I love.
My holiday state of mind made me realise that I want to spend the rest of 2014 like this…
My high school art teacher used to say, “Work smarter instead of working harder.” I’ve always love that concept but how does one go about doing less and achieving more?
Five Ways Do Less & Live More
I contemplated this for a while and found five ways to save time and do more in 2014. Whether you’re planning a wedding, working on your business or running your household, these ideas may also help you do less of the things you don’t enjoy so you have more time to focus on what you love…
1. Quit the Popularity Contest
Do what you love and do it well. People will see the value in what you do and you won’t need to waste time trying to win them over.
If you use twitter or run a Facebook page, you know that the work of gaining, keeping and engaging fans and followers can feel a bit like a high school popularity contest. It’s time consuming and I’m a bit over it. So instead spending of time trying to win favour on various social media sites – I’m going to focus on creating meaningful blog content.
2. Cut the Fat
Not all short-cuts are bad. Prioritise your goals and make time to work on them by taking short-cuts where you can afford to.
What do you want to short-cut? For me it’s admin.
Admin is what people often call “a necessary evil,” and frankly, I find it to be a time-consuming creativity killer. So I’m going to reduce blog admin starting by simplifying blog sponsorships to one package instead of two, setting a sponsor limit and being transparent about the pricing details here.
3. Focus on Love
What you do is a reflection of who you are. Pour your love and creativity into whatever you do. When it stops being fun, it’s time to reflect and refocus.
When your blog or creative hobby starts functioning as a business (even a small one), it’s easy to lose sight of what you first loved about it. It’s time to get back to the love!
For me this may mean saying no to some features and events so I have more time to say yes to projects that ensure working on Oh Darling Days continues to be a labour of love.
4. Swop Mindless Distractions for Meaningful Activity
Stop worrying what other people are doing and redirect your time and energy to what you want to do.
One way to carve out more time is by swopping mindless distinctions (like reading social media updates) for meaningful, mindful activities.
I’m going to try be disciplined about how I spend my time online this year. I’ve managed the cut down on twitter feed reading and can already feel the difference – it’s an instant cure for FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)!
5. Seek the Sensational
Take pleasure in beauty and be renewed and inspired by it. Your head might tell you that gazing out over a beautiful view is a waste of time but your heart knows this time is precious!
We become unsensational when we forget the importance of sensation. When we stop looking at the world with the new eyes of a child, with gratitude for all the beauty it holds, we lose the ability to create anything new and stop living a sensational life.
So in 2014, I’m going to use the time I save (by following the all the steps above) and use it to seek the sensational and be grateful for beauty wherever I find it.
That’s my five-step plan for 2014 – I hope it helps you save time and do more of what you love!
Read more Behind the Blog posts.
P.S The photos in this post are snap shots from my holiday.