Time management (Blog marathon Post 10)

Time Management Pictures, Images and Photos

"People ask me how I do so much. I wonder how they do so little." This is a quote I remember reading somewhere. If anyone knows who said this please let me know. (I tried googling but it did not help)

The reason this quote came to my mind today is because of yet another e-mail that I received (and I love hearing from those who have read my book and I do try and respond to each and every mail I get)  asking me how I manage to do so much (painting, blogging, exercising,reading ,watching movies, doing yoga and being and  being a full time mother and a wife).This person had asked me to write a post on time management. Many people have made this request  in the past too, asking me to share my 'secrets'. So here goes.  :

A day has 24 hours. Deduct 8 hours for sleeping and an hour for other activities like grooming etc. You are still left with 15 hours which is a LOT of time!

1. No television: I watch absolutely no TV at all. I have not seen Friends or Seinfield or Big Bang theory or How I met your mother Or Scrubs or any TV show. But I read up about them (and I read a lot) and watch bits of it, so I'd  be able to discuss it in a conversation. If I know that I will positively like it then I' get the entire series and watch it like a movie. (Probably the only Television series I have seen fully would be Band of Brothers which I loved) The only thing I watch on TV are the music videos and usually while having breakfast. (so the total time spent in front of TV would probably be 10 minutes at the most for me) (But I do watch movies and love them :P but again I am extremely selective)

2.Organise a lot:  I save a lot of time by organising things in advance especially in my cooking. My meals are all simple, nutritious and fast. I would usually grind dosa/Idli batter (yes, I grind it traditionally at home in a wet grinder)  which would last me a week and so a quick meal when kids are ravenous would be piping hot dosas and sambar. (Again I would have boiled the tur dal needed and it would be stored in the fridge). If I am making paranthas, I would already be having the dough as well as the aloo/gobhi mixture which goes into it, prepared in advance. So I save a lot of time even though I make traditional food. In a day the maximum time I spend in the kitchen would be at the most 1 and half hours and this would include cleaning up (as I have no maids here). I will usually have my laptop on the kitchen table too. So while I wait for the rice to boil, I can still check my mails :-)
I must mention here that Satish helps me a lot and we enjoy cooking together when he comes back from work. During weekends he takes over almost always.If I am working on some thing he will fully hold the fort down and give me my time and space. I am fortunate that way to have a very supportive spouse.(Yeah, he even wakes me up with coffee each morning)

3.Phone calls only rarely: I hardly spend time talking on the phone.The only person I call  regularly is my mother.If I talk on the phone, it is usually while walking to my Art-course (I am doing a course in Human Portraiture). Only very few people (two to be precise apart from my mother) call me from India and usually while I talk to them I am cleaning up my bedrooms or making beds or putting the laundry for washing as I speak!

4. Focus and intense focus:  If I am doing my yoga, I give it my 100% for that half an hour. I will shut out everything else and do only that. In India, people used to constantly ring my door bell but if I was doing my Yoga or my work-out there are times when I have not bothered to open the door :P :) If I am working on a piece of writing, I do not get up till I finish it. If I am doing a portrait, it will take a really important thing for me to get off it!

5.No fixed routines: Some people thrive on routines and feels that it saves them time. But somehow I detest routines.To me, routines are really boring. That gives me a lot of flexibility and a larger time frame to do things I want to do. In the gaps of time that I save, I fit in other things to be done. There are days when I paint a lot and write a lot and there are days when I do nothing but 'waste time' the whole day.(If 'wasting time' is really possible for a full time mother :P )

This is really all that I do. I rarely sleep before 12.30.a.m and I am up by 7.15 a.m. On weekends I sleep very late. (I hate waking up in  the mornings. I am a total night person)

I am sure these are no 'big secrets' and this is what most people who run a home must be doing.

If you have any tips on how you efficiently organise your time or if you have any questions that you would like to know, I would be happy to answer!
Current mood video (see right): Barry white Practise what you preach.


  1. No TV OMG..Really ??
    Focus Point us gud..where most of us lag...
    & really its true tat fixed routine makes life boring...
    Very gud post :) :)

  2. wow!!thats a lot of inspiration again!!
    how do u manage to focus 100%...my fickle mindedness is something i have been trying to control for so long...never happens1!

  3. One and a half hours in the kitchen is too less..I think Preeti its mostly cuz u are quick... slow coaches like me need to learn that... I liked what u said about not having fixed routines... But smtimes routine gets me moving, otherwise laziness will get the better of me...

  4. hmm..nice.. if i had written this blog.. it would sound similar.. with prespective of a full time student with multiple part time jobs" :P

    only thing i would have added is, having routine can be for some one who is learning time management.. it would help a lot.. later with practice, life becomes more of modular structure, with ability to place different modules (tasks) at different time slots of the day or merge them depending on the priority of the day.

  5. I love love love the quote :) - I am putting it as my gtalk status for some time :).

    Great tips on time management.....cutting out TV helps so much - I am the same, except that I watch a lot of sports when they are on.

    Food - I don't like to cook and freeze or refrigerate, but I work full time so I cook only once a day...so yes it doesnt take longer than 90 mins :) and hubby helps with the grocery and cleaning and sometimes cooking too.

    Focus is the key....absolute must.

    Loved this post!

  6. A great post. I especially liked the fifth one as it's very similar to what I do, lol.

  7. Liked this post a lot!! No TV helps a lot - I accept!! I do cooking the similar way too!!
    Liked the no fixed routines!! May be I will give that a shot!!:-)

  8. I liked the 'focus-intense focus' part! :) Thanks for sharing your tips. I wish, I so wish there was something more productive I could do during my daily traveling time (which is very long -3hrs) :-( I read but I get so restless!! Have a nice weekend.

  9. Interesting..alot of what you said I do already..except that I am a film maker and there is no perfect order to things, I watch some soaps..but aha..I watch it like a movie. I have the dvds, I sit alone on my wasteful days and go through one episode after another..and that is why no routine helps..or else I will have no time to do anything except being a mom. Which I love btw. I am enjoying reading your blog. Cheers.

  10. You do have the secrets of getting time for things that u like to do and these are watching tv to the minimum, not spending long times on phone calls and above all total focus on a work at a time. People who complain of time have problem managing these things.

  11. One important thing is to avoid twitter as well as facebook while concentrating on work

  12. NO TV????? That is unthinkable :) But, I guess, that is one of the most definite time-wasters.

    I, for one, make a mini to-do list mentally at the start of every day/week so I have my broader schedules in place. Then, the little gaps can be filled in, like you mentioned.

    Focus and intense focus is a strong takeaway from this post. Maybe, your yoga helps you in that. Else, it is very difficult to focus :)

  13. Here's your answer :P

    When people say to me: "How do you do so many things?" I often answer them, without meaning to be cruel: "How do you do so little?" It seems to me that people have vast potential. Most people can do extraordinary things if they have the confidence or take the risks. Yet most people don't. They sit in front of the telly and treat life as if it goes on forever. ~Philip Adams

    I had read it earlier too! :)

    There is another reason why you do so much... Its because you love everything you do. Most people I know, do things for the heck of it and are not passionate enough... be it their job or other things they do. Being passionate and interested about things you do goes a long way.

  14. Super post!!!! A lot of people shd benefit from this....including me;-P. Like u said they r no big secrets but reading abt it does make something in the brain go 'ping';-D.

    But 1& 1/2 hrs in the kitchen is like impossible for me really;-(

  15. I totally agree with the TV & Phone part..infact I would like NOT to have a tv in my house at all..not sure if that is possible and my hubby will co-operate :)....nor can I spend hours on the phone--not for me...
    but am very fickle minded--cannot set my thing on one till completion ....shd improve on that aspect I guess....


  16. take a bow preeti. I would add to it, determination and passion for something will ensure you always have time for it. Since the time i started learning dancing, i dont spend much time watching tv either :)

  17. Really like the way you manage cooking an elaborate Indian meal! Shall keep that tip in mind :)

    No TV and no phone calls! Wow! Actually pretty much the same here. I long to watch TV! But I do manage to speak on the phone. I'm mostly returning calls, since I miss them all!

  18. TS: Thank you :) I like speaking on the phone but nobody bothers to call me from India.

    Maneesha; thanks a lot :) Happy it answered your questions.

    ani_aset:Thanks :) What kind of dancing do you practise?

    Seema: completely agree with you about TV! :) I do really enjoy watching movies though!

    Reflections: What does one do for more time than that? I can't imagine!

    Raam Pyari: Thanks :)

  19. Mamta: Thank you for finding out who the quote was from.Really appreciate. Love your insightful comments too. Yes I had never thought of it. I do love that I do!

    Palsworld: Happy you could take away something :) I do watch movies though!

    Rohit: Yes :)

    Roshan: i thought this was just plain common sense :P Not a 'secret' really. Thank you for commenting so regularly. I do appreciate.

    This is that: You said it absolutely right..Unless one manages one's time, there will be no time to be anything other than a mom! How old is your child/children? Thanks for your comments and glad you liked it!

    Lostworld: I save a lot of time as I dont have to do any travelling :)But good you get to read!

    Durga: happy it helped! I'd die of boredom if I was confined to a routine.

  20. Ariel: glad you liked :) same pinch on 5th one :)

    Shachi: thanks a lot!! I too do not like to freeze or refrigerate. So i end up cooking fresh mostly. When you have kids it would be impossible to cook just once a day, if you want to give them fresh stuff.

    Mihir: yes I guess. But if you want to kill me all you have to do is force me to follow a routine :) I'd be dead by the end of the day!

    Pointblank: reflections also said the same thing. Maybe it is because my dishes are quick to make?

  21. Sanatsizing: Thanks! LOL--maybe I am so darn obsessed which is why i manage to focus :P :D

    Nischii: Thanks!! Yes--No TV..In fact it irritates me when people just sit in front of it like couch potatoes :P But I do love watching movies..I guess to each their own!

  22. Nice post. There is lots to learn from you.

  23. Latin ballroom dancing includes-jive,salsa,rumba,samba,jive,cha cha, waltz,foxtrot,salsa,merengue,tango,paso doble from sandeep soparkar :D

  24. :) :) :) :)

    sigh..that's why no skype?

  25. Time management - the one thing that i am worst at. I guess you are one of those blessed souls who can get around doing everything :))... And no tv???? Gawd i watch an awful lot of tv and movies and the time i spend on internet, don't even ask me :(

  26. Oh... I find another no TV person. They are very very hard to come by :)


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