Life in 3-hours intervals and full of unpredictable events

Hi guys,

Today it is a week, since my son came home from hospital. I won’t lie, our family’s life turned of whole 180°. Trip for shopping or to the bank became the big adventure and really hard task. Sleep? Well, I used to complain about lack of sleep before, but now I just miss that time.

But the biggest change in my life is having to do everything in 3 hours intervals (as every four hours approx my son is waking up and feeding, changing nappies and just talking to him takes around 1 hour). This gives me six three hours slots, when I can get anything done. Usually, three of them are already booked for sleeping and doing some work around house, so I am getting nine hours in total to carry on my tasks. I am well behind with my tasks again and first few days I wasn’t able to do anything. I needed to adjust to the new situation.

But today I am going to talk about working in 3 hours intervals. Basically, there are no full 3 hours, as I need to eat also, have some tea or coffee. But just to make it easier, let’s assume for simplicity, that this is the case.

Being so time-restricted, I needed to start planning very well (post on how I do this will appear on Friday). I can’t afford just sitting and doing nothing, as I would wake up in extremely dirty home and with tasks to do from one year before (now it is just one month, but I started getting on top of it 😉 ).

Generally speaking, having a plan in my situation (much more detailed than it used to be) is esential. I have been asked by my friends, why I am wasting so much time for planning though? The answer is simple, to be able to work more efficient, when I have a chance. Also, I have to be much more prepared for distractions and changes of plans. Sometimes my little one have a problem with digesting food he has just eaten, so he needs me to comfort him, while he struggles, sometimes he is not well.

Today’s post is very short and general, just to allow me to get back on track after another break. I hope you enjoyed it any way.

Also, as always, I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Three lessons I’ve learnt over the last week

Hi guys,

Today, I’ve decided to start posting again, but instead of sharing my tips on any subject, I will tell you what I’ve learnt during the last week. So let me jump right into it.

Lesson 1:

First thing I’ve learnt is that stressing out does not help you. And I knew it before (probably each of us did), but I am the kind of person who get stressed any way. However, when my delivery sterted, I managed to keep relatively calm. I mean, I was a bit nervous (even if it was amonth before the due date, I was sure my baby will be delivered that day), but I was able to think clearly and co-ordinate my dad and my husband, while we were leaving to the hospital. I can’t say, the one thing that saved me, was that I had no idea that my symptoms are not normal at all. This helped me and my baby to go through all this process much easier than we would otherwise. What does it have to do with productivity? Very often we are getting stressed and amount of things to do makes us feel overwhelmed. The truth is that stressing out will not help us. Actualy it will do completely otherwise. The best thing we can do, is to take any action to handle this hard situation. Stressing will waste our valuable time, we could use to make our situation better.

Lesson 2:

Another quite important thing is that you can go through much more than you think. Sometimes we are worrying about some situations which are going to be hard. We make up possible scenarios and try to predict how we are going to react. In most cases we include the worst possible options. But what I have learnt, even the worst scenario is something, which you are able to survive. It might be hard, sometimes you could thing that this is too much already, but remember not to give up. Eventually, you will sort out everything and you will be able to see, that in reality it wasn’t as bad and the whole experience made you stronger than you have ever been.

Lesson 3:

Last, but not least lesson is that your plans might turn out useless. Something can happen and you will have to leave everything what you wanted to do. But no matter what, you will be able to carry on afterwards. And that time, having your list with all this overdue tasks will be life saving. Just remember that some of the things might be already not worthed touching. Just spend some time to revise all the things you have to do and get rid of all this tasks, which are not important any more.

And that’s it for today’s post. I hope it will be helpful for you and there is some value you can carry on with. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Huge news!

Hi guys,

Today, my little boy has been born. 1 month premature, but healthy. The only thing is that he has to put on some weight, other than that he is just fine. As he will stay a bit longer in hospital, I am going to take a short break to be able as long as we need together. I hope you will understand that, as I haven’t got opportunity to make up my tasks yet, I will most likely not manage to keep any regularity.

I wish you a very productive day and I see you in my next post.

Daria

What I want to do before giving birth?

Hi guys,

Today is a very special day for me. I’ve managed to make up all my tasks (that’s why this post is being uploaded later that usually, but I hoped to be able to share this with you). It has been very hard two weeks and I will try and make sure that I will not get so behind any more (well, everyone is saying that my world will turn around when my son is going to be born and they are probably right). That’s why my plan for now is to prepare.

I don’t know if you remember my post about holiday where I shared some tips on preparing for taking longer break. One of the tips was to get some tasks done in advance. And this is exactly what I am going to do before delivery (which can actualy happen very soon). I have also realised that we are completely unprepared for a little human being to come, literally we have nothing. So this is the priority task for now: to equip our son properly.

I used to be very scared at the beginning, as even if I wanted a child very badly, I had doubts if we are able to cope with all new responsibilities. And I will not lie, I am still scared. I don’t think you can ever be ready for a baby. But having this small feet kicking me each day, seeing my bump moving as my baby is changing position and even playing with my son (really, it is possible to play with a baby in your tummy; I’ve never believed in that) makes me more confident. I know I won’t be a perfect mother, but the only thing I know for sure, is that I am going to do my best.

And just to ease my mind I want to have as much work done as possible. It will allow me to spend these early weeks of his life with my son, without worrying too much about things to do. Of course, I can’t do everything in advance, but at least I will sort out posts for this blog, so I can just have them ready to upload. Also episodes for my channel (with episodes is easier, as each of them is a next part of one series, so I just need to schedule them for each Friday). This will keep my projects going, without me spending time on them. When I will have holiday to look after my son.

So these are my plans for the next couple of weeks (or maybe a bit longer). I will prepare post about my planning schedule as well and it will be uploaded on Monday or Wednesday (preparing screenshots and pictures will make it a bit more time-consuming, but I hope you will like it).

So this is it for today’s post. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

How to handle to-do list with multiple overdue tasks?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to tell you about getting behind. As bad and scary it sounds, unfortunately it is a reality for many of us (if not all of us). Lately, I had fallen behind as well and when I thought I’ve started getting out on straight path with my work, there were so many new tasks coming (what might be a disadvantage of planning ahead), that it was again getting out of my hands. You could also realise that, because since last two weeks one post each week was missing. I was even considering shifting for two posts a week, instead of three, but I have decided that this is not the best solution. Running away from the problem will not really solve it. So even if I had to miss two or three posts, I am back on track (at least I hope so 😉 ).

However, more regular posting doesn’t mean that I made up my other tasks. They are still hanging over my head and waiting to be done. I wanted to show you my planning process in details. I’ve mentioned that I am using Nozbe and a bullet journal, but I have never explained how they are co-working in my case. And this post will appear as soon as I will manage to bring my tasks up to date (especially university-related, as my coming due date will not allow me to attend second dates of assignments and exam). All because I know that explaining this process will take a bit more time.

But coming back to today’s topic, I believe that most of us (if not all) at least once in their life came across the situation, when to-do list seemed not end and looking for a solution for that (which by the way, makes our tasks being left behind for a little more) became some kind of obsession. And guess what? There are tons of advises for people like we are out there! Unfortunately, to read about them is taking unbelievable amount of time (which actually used for working on our tasks would bring us a bit closer to handling this huge list) and not all of these advises are worth it to be read. There are many of them repeating, but being named differently.

So going through these advises and pretty much wasting my time, I came across the only one, which seem really work. And it does require from you just one thing: keep getting your tasks done! There is no magic method to get everything done within one day (especially if you really got behind a lot), but everyday work, where you are getting as much done as you can will make you handle your to-do list (even if it will happen after week or two).

When I have started working this way, I had to carry on around 15 tasks for next day (yes, I got so badly behind) and at the moment I got to the point where just 5 to 8 tasks are being migrated to the next day. To get to this point took me two weeks, where I was checking task after task every single day.

So the best advice I can give you on this topic is to make sure you will prevent this from happening. Make sure that when you see you are starting getting behind, you will take an action right away to prevent it.

But if you are already at the point that even looking at your to-do list cause some headache and you don’t want to even think of sorting this out, I did just one thing which made me getting closer to not-scary-at-all-to-do list.

First of all, don’t really look for a solution, just keep working on your tasks. Start from these, which should be done long time ago and keep handling them (well, if you have something what is very important to be ready soon, and these overdue tasks can wait just a bit longer, you can start from it). For a time being, keep moving less important tasks for a next day (not longer, as you don’t want to move your problem further). For, example, I have my cleaning divided for parts of the home. I usually clean each part every day (like dusting, hoovering, mopping the floor, etc.), plus deep cleaning once a week. However, at the moment I resigned from it. I mean I still clean my home, but I am handling just one part of the home each day (except for the dishes which are being washed every day and toilet, just for the hygiene). Also I used to cook every day, as my goal for this year is to keep eating out to the minimum, but since two weeks I am cooking for at least two days (it takes very similar amount of time, but you have every second day cooking free).

Second thing is to prioritise. If you have tasks with deadline approaching, but nothing really will happen, if you’ll make them later (I have this kind of tasks related to my personal project: I gave them a deadline, but moving this deadline just a bit will not make a lot of harm really), move them for next day. Why it is important to keep moving your tasks just for one day? Before I took this strategy, I kept moving them more, like one week or something close to that. What happened, my to-do list became very light (at least for the next few days), so I just relaxed and slowed down with my work. However, when the week passed, I was in exactly same situation. Having these tasks moved just for a day will keep you remember about them. And what is important, carry on moving your tasks for the next day, just when you are not going to do anything else today. Your goal is to get as much done today as you can, so don’t make your daily list very short.

And what’s very important, is to remember that for these time when you are making up your work, you have to do all your best not to procrastinate. It is very satisfying to check these tasks each day, so try to motivate yourself this way.

And this is all I wanted to share with you in today’s post. I hope you enjoyed it. For now I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

How to find first customer?

Hi guys,

Today, I’ve decided to write about one of the possibilities to make starting of your own business much easier without need of investing a huge amount of money (at least not in the beginning). However, you need to be aware, that you have to pay for everything (there is nothing free in this world), the only difference will be the currency. In case of this example, currency is your time.

So let me explain: imagine that you have created an amazing product or you have great service to offer. The only problem is, that as for now only you know about it. There are no customers yet, no feedback. And here the problem starts: you need to market whatever you have to offer. Find this first customer, who will happily buy something from you. And it might seem simple: just advertise yourself online. Not a problem at all, isn’t it?

Well, sometimes you might be right. But you need to be aware that potential customers don’t know you yet. They have no idea what kind of person you are or anything what they would like to know to feel more confident to buy something from you (you know, you might be fair, but there are many scammers out there, who will offer unbelievably great stuff, which turn out to be just waste of money). People will be right not to trust you just because you said you are good (at the end, they are about to pay money, they worked hard for).

But there is some solution for this problem. Even before your product is ready, you should try to build some social proof. You could go for the fake one, but believe me, you will loose on it very quickly. Or you can actually show to your potential customers that they shouldn’t be worried to trust you. Probably there are many options available to achieve this, however the one I am going for is to give some value for free. And here you have a lot of options: you can start a blog, a YouTube channel or whatever else you will want to. The only requirement is that you’ll give some kind of value to your audience and that you will not charge them for that.

Let’s talk about charging first. Why is it so important not to charge your audience for the content they are getting, especially if you need to spend a lot of time preparing it? The answer is simple. People need to learn, that you are capable of providing value for them. They need to see with their own eyes, that what you have to offer, does actually have some value. That they can learn something from it. And something what sorts their problem, answer some question or simply entertain (if this is the direction, you are going for).

As you are sharing your knowledge regularly, people get to know you. They start trusting you and they like things you are doing. It brings one more advantage for you, which is: you already have audience to introduce your product/service to them. On your platform of choice, without paying huge amount of money for advertisement. It is win, win! People will get what they need and you will be able to get your feedback (especially, if you really did put all your heart into your project and as a result you are offering something of great quality and affordable price).

In my case, the platform I’ve chosen is YouTube. As my first product will be connected with education, I am going to offer there a free tutorials (I have started it some time ago, but I’ve realised, that it was not really planned as it should be, and since this Friday I am starting my new better set up tutorial). Although, I know that it will be a lot of extra work for me, I am also sure that this will help me in the future, when my product is ready to be sold.

But as I said, before you go for anything, you need to know what your product is about and are the people you want to offer it to. Are they children or adults? Male or female? And this is how you have structure your language. To make sure they will feel in the bottom of their hearts that this is being made for them.

And with this thought I am going to leave you today. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Why it is important to make good choices? And what, if we didn’t?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about choices. As everything we are doing is a result of decission we have made at some point, being able to make a good choice is a very important skill. Things we are doing at the moment might have huge impact on our future life, either positive or negative. However, it is very often difficult to detrmine which of the possible options is the best and whether it is going to bring anything good into our lives.

There are also things, we just can’t predict. I’ve heard very often, when after some let’s say car accident where someone died, person who survived is blaming him or herself for this death. Even if this was something, what wasn’t anyone’s fault. But they have these thoughts in their heads like: “If only I have choosen the other way” or “If only I would agreed to change place with her” and so on.

There is always this if. But as in case of accidents we was not able to prevent it (of course if we weren’t this drunk driver speeding 150 miles per hour), certain actions will most likely bring some kind of results, which at the time of making decissions, we might not be aware of.

The good example are people who decide to start their business and spend all their free time working on it. They resign from contact with their family and friends, just to achieve this one goal. However, when their business turn out to be a great success (or failure), they is no one around them to share the joy or there is no one to give them a shoulder to cry on. Everything started, when they decided that working is the most important thing which they want to spend their time on, while they weren’t able to predict that they will be left alone with whatever outcome they will get.

I would like to share with you some tips on making good decissions in life, but I don’t know any of them. The only thing I can think of is to do research and analyse, but again, everyone’s life is different. You have to take the risk (as long as it will be wise risk) and go for your goals. However, it is also important to be ready to pay for consequences of your choices. I think, this is what makes you an adult. Being able to say: “Hey, sorry it was my mistake, what can I do to fix it?”. This make you a responsible person, even if your soul seems to stop at the age of three 😉

I will leave you with this thought today. I wish you a very productive day with only good choices and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Where shall I take motivation from?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about days, when you just can’t do anything. Whenever you think about doing any work, you have a feeling that this is not the day. Everything seems impossible.

I think that these kind of days are happening to all of us. We are just humans and we can’t work day after day. That’s why it is important to take some breaks sometimes. However, if this happens to us every day for a long time, we should analyse what is causing that. There might be a lot of reasons for this, starting from tiredness, the nature of our tasks (they might be not something what we really enjoy to do), fear of failure (it is better not to start, if I might fail) or success (what will people think?) and in the worse scenario: it might be one of the signs of burnt out or depression. The last one is the worst, as it is a serious problem and it is very important to get help, if it is the case.

However, if you are sure that depression is not the case, there are some steps you can take to make yourself more motivated. First of all, is to determine what is causing this kind of behaviour. Maybe it is just tiredness and the only thing you need to do is to take some holiday (you can read here to see my advises before taking a holiday). Or simply one week of break from these tasks should do the job.

A bit harder thing is fear. Why so? To realise that you are afraid (whether of failure or success) might be very tricky. You can have that feeling without realising it. I used to be worried about failing. Although, I knew that every attempt of leaving my comfort zone will be connected with fear, I didn’t realised that it was keeping me away from work for quite long time. Similarly, applying for my uni two years ago made me feel same: “What if I will not manage language wise?” or “What if I will not be able even to get to university?” and finally: “What will people around me say? Will they make a fun of me?”. These were just some of the questions didding my head. And do you know what? None of them was valid. Ok, at the beginning it was a bit hard for me to understand what lecturers are saying to us. But eventually, I am able to follow their speach without special effort. Almost as English were my mother language. Well, it looks like practice really makes pefect and if I wouldn’t try, I wouldn’t know till now.

If your problem is the nature of tasks, this might be also quite hard to handle in some cases. But what you might want to consider, is to change subject of you actions. If this is not possible at the moment, just find something what you love to do and incorporate it into your schedule. I know, including more work, while you can’t force yourself to complete current tasks seems a bit weird. But remember, it does not have to be another task. Try to go for something what you actually enjoy doing. Maybe a netflix session? Going for a walk with your family? Choose what suits you the most and enjoy! Having something what you are looking forward to might motivate you to work. Any way, you’ll just finish these tasks and you are going to spend amazing time, aren’t you?

And I am going to leave you with this thought. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

Why to delegate or automate your work?

Hi guys,

Today I would like to tell you about getting help. Provided that your personal projects are developing well, you are going to have more and more tasks. If you turn them into the bussiness, there will be a lot of accountancy job, bussiness management things, etc. Plus, there might be some regular tasks, which you can automate or delegate to someone, like sending out your products to your customers and dealing with problems connected to it.

But why do you want to do this? You need to remember that in any kind of bussiness, if you are not moving forward, in reality you are going back. Not being able to provide new services or products to your clients will eventually make you stay behind your concurence. Because in today’s running world people are looking for newer and newer things and solution each day, whatever you are offering to the market at this moment will get outdated relatively quickly (like other companies will have it updated or customers will already have your product, so they will not need to buy another one).

Getting rid of unneccessary tasks will give you more time for work that really matters. You’ll be able to upgrade your service or product or come out with the new one, what will provide for you and your family, when your old product will become outdated.

The other thing are preferences. I wish to be able to go for holiday with my family or just spend time with them without worrying about work. Having too much on your head might make it impossible. At the moment, all of my project are not considered to be my source of income, yet. They are in early development stage. However, I am already trying to determine, which parts of them I would be able to delegate or automate in the future and how am I going to do this. And of course, it does not have to be your way. I know people who just love what they do and money is just a by-product of something they would be doing any way. I enjoy spending time on my projects as well, but at the same time I wouldn’t like them to become something what I have to do. Also, I would like to be able to provide for myself without having to go to regular work, where my shifts are set and there are only limited days off.

So if you are like me, I highly recommend you to start thinking about delegating and automating your work at planing stage of your work. As some solutions might require some special steps, you need to take in advance, it might save your time in the future.

And with this thought I am going to leave you today. I wish you a very productive day and I will see you in my next post.

Daria

Power of believing in yourself

Hi guys,

Today I would like to talk about believing in yourself. I think that this is an important part of success. Especially that doing something different might make other people want to advise you and convince about pointlesness of your plan. They will find a lot of reasons why you shouldn’t do, what you intend to. They’ll point out everything that can go wrong and some of these black scenarios might scare you to death.

You can even know some people who tried to go similar way, but they failed. However, the most important word here is ‘similar’. Even if you are following their steps quite closely, you are completely different person: you might be in the different stage of life, your values are not the same either and, what the most important, your goals and dreams might lead you towards different place. Moreover, even if all above are same for both of you, still you are different person. And what a lot of people forget, in everything you do, you are leaving part of yourself (how ever weird it sounds). That makes everything you do very unique.

The only thing, which can help you stay motivated is believing that you can success. It is also important to hear what people around you have to say, as they probably don’t want anything wrong for you. While listening to their reasoning, just try to determine whether disadvantages, they are presenting to convince you, are really disadvantages in your opinion. As I have met a lot of people who were saying that they wouldn’t be able to work in a way I do, as they are tired enough after their regular job, while for me it is not a problem at all.

But let’s focus on believing in yourself. If you analysed all pros and cons of the project you are working on from your point of view, you are able to know what you might lose. You should remember that all kinds of bussinesses are connected to some kind of risk and if you are ready to take it, just go for it. Even if you fail, you’ll learn something for the next time. And this might be the most valuable lesson in your life, which can turn your life for 180°.

This is the reason, why I am starting so many projects (not all of them I am sharing here), which teach me something new. Although, they are not very beneficial in financial meaning and they might be seen by others as time-wasting, they have got me ready to start working on the biggest of my projects so far. And still I have a lot to learn, a lot of mistakes to do and tons of hours of work in front of me, but this experience I’ve gained (and I am still gaining), will make it much easier than it would be otherwise. The only thing keeping me motivated is a fact that I truly believe in success. And I know that one day my projects will allow me to take my son, who is going to be born soon, for holiday without worrying about finances. I think this will compensate me all this time I am spending on work now.

And with this thought I am going to leave you today. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria