Pomodoro Technique, which Cirillo created. On the surface, it is simply timing oneself to complete tasks for 25 minutes, followed by a 5-minute break. It gets someone like me, who is easily distracted by email, facebook, cleaning, painting my nails (see below), basically anything but the task at hand, to actually focus for 25 straight minutes. I just used a web-based timer I found through Google but the actual technique can be more complex if you want to try out the real deal. Let's just say this simple technique enabled me to crank out my 30-page novella draft last week in a pretty limited timeframe!
#5: Use the OHIO Method - OHIO stands for Only Handle It Once--and it is the best way to tackle emails and voicemails. "Decide immediately what to do with each message the first time you look at it, so you won't waste time going back to it later," says organization expert Peter Walsh, star of Enough Already! With Peter Walsh. That means trashing junk mail, taking care of any two-minute tasks right away, and adding the more time-consuming items to your to-do list or delegating them to someone else.
Okay, I would worry about not being able to hear my alarm going off in the bathroom, but this tip is so true. It reminded me of my post about small steps to a calmer day. If I can get out of bed the first time my alarm goes off, or allow myself a few extra minutes to read in the morning, I feel so much calmer and more refreshed during the morning rush.
And to end this post on a fun note, I wanted to share a great summery shade of nail polish - Essie's Status Symbol. Between homework assignments tonight, I did my own little at-home manicure... This hue is pink with a touch of coral and looks cute even though my skin hasn't seen sun all winter. The color just brightens my mood... or maybe it's the unbelievable weather we are having in Chicago. Either way, I'll take a burst of color and some sunshine any day.