October Recap and November Intentions

We are almost through October so it’s time to review my intentions for the last month.

Cut off technology at 10pm (and read hard copy books)

I am getting better with this intention. I’ve been reading this great book, which is basically short interviews with interesting Londoners. It does entice me to read every night but I still find myself often taking ‘one last look’ at social media. Disconnecting from technology is a work in progress for all of us I think.

Enjoy the daylight

Unfortunately I injured myself earlier in the month, so I haven’t been able to do much exercise, including going to the gym. However, walking has been doable so I’ve been walking along the river most nights after work before we sit down to dinner.

With the clocks moving forward in Australia, it’s been beautifully light and warm, so I have definitely felt an increased appreciation for the daylight. And with less wine than I intended to enjoy last month, which is probably a good thing!

Revel in upcoming events

An expressive birthday moment with friends...

An expressive birthday moment with friends...

Over my birthday weekend I made sure to sit back and enjoy special moments with friends and family and not let them pass by too quickly.

Unfortunately the music festival I was going to was cancelled but I still have plenty of upcoming fun activities to practice this technique on.

November Intentions

Schedule quarterly shopping days

Uh, how fun does this sound? This year I’ve been planning my budget a little better and putting some extra money away for clothes and beauty.

It’s starting to build up and I figure rather than making spontaneous online shopping hauls (hello Asos), I should make a day of it and go into stores, try on and buy great products and finish with a meal or drink with a girlfriend. Who’s with me?

Eat more frogs at work

I ebb and flow with this concept, but back when I wrote this post, it was working really well for me. It’s a very busy season at work so, rather than fall behind, I’m going to try and get my ‘ugliest’ task out of the way first thing.

Whether that be a phone call I’m dreading, a report I’ve been putting off, or plugging my headphones in and getting my inbox back under control, it will put me in good stead for the rest of the work day.

Plan for the holidays

Yes, it’s nearly that time again! Between work and social events, I usually do a frantic online shop (are we seeing a pattern here?) in early-mid December.

This year I’d like to think ahead, work on some great, thoughtful gifts and also get a food and drink list started to make this season extra special.

What are you planning to get done in November? Let me know in the comments below.

Time Management Series: Make The Most Of Your Commute

 
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Ever get to about Thursday and wish you could add a few more days to the week?

Running out of time to get tasks done at work, adding to the running grocery list in your phone, hearing about another TV show/book/podcast/restaurant recommendation from a friend - the time struggle is real.

Where The Light Plays wants to help out. I’ll share a monthly time management post on how to claw some precious minutes back in the day. Today, we’re looking at the power of the commute. And if you work for yourself or from home, thank your lucky stars!

Audio books

This is one area I personally feel a fair amount of guilt. I have so many books I want to read - from classics to personal development titles, my bookshelves and Kindle are rammed with unread tomes.

Enter the audio book. Once you get over the number of hours it will take to listen to the book (up to 20+hours anyone?) plug your headphones in and get on with your commute.

I do find super detailed and in-depth books can be a little difficult to listen to via audio - we all have to focus to cross the road or step on the train, so sometimes I miss important details. But it’s a great way to get consuming literature. My favourite so far? Animal Farm by George Orwell.

And for those more detailed books? Stick your current read in your tote bag and you’ll be amazed how much you can get through either on your commute or while waiting at various points throughout the day.

Podcasts

I am a complete podcast junky. I know which days my favourite podcasts are coming out through the week and make sure they’re in my phone before I walk out the door in the morning. They are great when you’re commuting, if you walk at lunchtime (do it!) or even at the gym as a good distraction from the pain of lifting weights. My favourites are:

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Emails

In line with my discussion on eating frogs, getting into work and being consumed by email can leave you achieving very little of what you set out to complete for the day.

My solution when I know I’m drowning in email? Check them on the train - file those you don’t need to respond to, respond quickly to those that you can and flag any that need your attention, preferably later in the day. Then when you arrive, you can get straight on to your to do list for the day and know emails are somewhat taken care of. The theory of ignoring email until later in the day terrifies me so this is my happy medium.

Phone calls

Last year, I finally upgraded my first car. I was skyrocketed from the early ‘90s to the mid-’10s and the world of bluetooth. “Oooh” I hear you say. OK, I was a little behind.

I love it! When I’m driving to work, or to see a client, or to visit friends on the weekend, I make some phone calls. I know it’s not as common anymore but calling someone for a chat cuts through the social media and reams of text messages, and usually leaves me in a better mood.

How do you make the most of your commute?

And as part of the new series, in what area do you need the most time management help?