Time Management & Organization
Time is an important resource, and you need to manage it wisely if you want to maximize your creativity and productivity. Below are some steps to take in order to evaluate how you spend your time, understand how long it takes you to do activities, and develop an overall picture of how you spend your time.
1. Every business or company that is successful has staff meetings. Since you are a business of one, you should schedule (and show up for!) a weekly staff meeting with yourself. Make lists of those items that are the most important to get done, and schedule what you think you can accomplish in one week. Prioritize those items.
At every staff meeting with yourself, go over your list and take what you did not accomplish this week and roll it over to the current week, perhaps making those items a priority.
Be sure to schedule time for unexpected items and issues that may arise, as they always do.
2. A good way to figure out how you spend your time is to track it for two weeks. Evaluate how you spent your time and how you might do similar tasks together, instead of jumping from item to item. You might put everything you have to do outside your studio on one day, so you are not running around every day. You might decide that you would rather work at night, instead of during the day.
3. Evaluate how rewarding an activity may have been versus the time you spent doing it. How much did you accomplish and was it productive? Can you make any changes to make things go smoother? Did you under-schedule enough hours to complete the items required?
4. When are you most clear-headed in your workday? If you are a morning person, do difficult tasks early in the day. If you don’t get started until later in the day, save these things for when you are the most apt to be at your best.
5. You may need to make a long-term schedule, such as set hours to work in your studio every Saturday, Tuesday, and Thursday nights. Maybe Wednesday nights are for doing all the arts business issues, such as updating your mailing list or sending out invoices, or doing the books. This way you won’t be so behind should you need pertinent information for a grant or a project proposal.
6. You may need to schedule time to relax in addition to creative time. Being overworked doesn’t always help creativity. You may need to create a balance for yourself. Don’t forget to schedule quality time with other family members and friends.
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Feel free to share this article with other artists.
You can also get our popular book for artists, Getting Your Sh*t Together: The Ultimate Business Manual for Every Practicing Artist, which includes all of this information and more here.
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