Less is More

There’s no need to point it out to me, I’ve faltered on my weekly blog postings. You’ll hear no excuses from me. I just didn’t do them. But I’m here now, ready to get back on schedule. Randy Ingermanson sent out his monthly writing e-zine today, and the first article is on organization. I’m an extremely organized person (let’s give my husband a minute to quit laughing… breathe, David, breathe…), so I usually skim this part of the article and head to the meat about writing. But today, I stopped to take a look at the organization section.

Randy said, “less is more.” He admitted it’s not original to him, nor is it difficult to grasp. If you have ten project you’re working on, and you cut five of them, you’ve doubled the amount of time you can spend on the five you kept.

What’s more, if you cut the interruptions (don’t look at the email program, don’t answer the phone, don’t respond when the kids yell the cat is on fire…) your mind has fewer things to think about and it’s easier to concentrate on the task at hand.

What about the five you cut? Does that mean they’ll never get done? Nope. Set them aside for later. Finish the first five, then move on to the next five. (Note: I think “five” is an arbitrary number. Fill in whatever works for you.)
Less (as in “fewer projects”) means more time to focus, to pay attention to details, to get it right. Less also means less distractions, less frustration, less stress.
My project list is unique. It’s a whole lot of home school and house maintenance stuff, and squeeze in fun “me” time when I can. It’s especially hard this week when the kids and I are all sick. None of these projects can be set aside for “later” (who wants me to wait three weeks to do a load of laundry or cook dinner?), so I’m left with the “fun” stuff in life: church choir, fellowship with friends, conquering the world (playing Civilization, a highly addictive computer game), and writing.
This week, I’m giving up Civilization to work on my novel. It’s going to be tough, but I’m certain the end product will be satisfying.
-Sonja

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