If you ask my husband, he knows it makes me crazy when he says he didn’t have time to do something.
You didn’t put the trash out? (as it’s overflowing and the dog is licking the sides of the can…)
Sorry, didn’t have time.
Can you change the batteries in the smoke detector? (after it’s been beeping for a few days…)
Yeah, I’ll have time later.
Even though I know how busy we are, the time excuse makes me crazy.
Why? Because the way we keep our schedules, if you want more time, you have to make it.
And you can, if you manage your time well.
I first learned to manage time when I was waitressing in college. For the first few weeks, I ran around like a chicken with my head cut off.
Then, I eased into a routine.
While one table was waiting for their food, I would head off to take another’s order, stopping by the beverage station to grab a refill for a third table, and extra sugar packets for a fourth.
I definitely put those skills to use when I started teaching classes of 35+ kids in the inner city.
After all this, I thought I was awesome at managing time… until I had my own kids.
Nursing a newborn while potty training a toddler had me feeling the same way I did when I was a new waitress in the weeds.
However, I have learned if you manage your time well, there are so many ways to find extra time in a hectic schedule.
And, extra time means more time for all those DIY projects you keep pinning. 🙂
How to Find Time for DIY Projects
With the follow eight tips, you’ll be making extra time in your crazy schedule – in no time 🙂 You’ll be amazed at just how much more time you will have.
1. Get up an hour earlier
I know what you’re thinking.
You already set snooze as many times as you possibly can, so how can you get up earlier?!
I felt the same way… until I did it.
Getting up an hour earlier gives you time to work on your projects.
The chance to work on your project first thing is a great motivator to get you out of bed.
Or, start your day (throw dinner in the crockpot, get the day’s chores done), to free up that hour later for your diy projects.
It’s so peaceful in the mornings. The house is so quiet that you’ll never sleep in again.
2. Cut some things out
You know when you are throwing a party and the day of the party, you still have a long list of things to do?
Then some guests show up early. And, the rest of the list goes out the window.
And you know what?
No one noticed anyway.
Think about your day, your week, your schedule. What things can you cut out – that wouldn’t be noticed?
Maybe you start vacuuming once a week instead of every other day.
Maybe you really don’t need to do laundry every day?
If you can cut a couple things out of your busy days, you’ll dust off some much needed diy time.
3. Let kids work with you
Have little ones and a project you’re dying to work on?
You can actually manage both at the same time. Simply set up a little station for your kids to work too.
If you’re painting a piece of wood, give them something to paint too.
If you’re sewing a craft, give them some fabric to play with or color.
My toddler LOVES our craft time. He usually picks up all of my scraps and makes things with them. He put together a bunch of foam scraps into the shape of a train the other day.
While my husband wondered what I was teaching him, I got a solid hour of craft time in while spending time with my toddler. 🙂
Working alongside your child inspires creativity and gives you quality time together.
4. Delegate what you can
I LOVE to delegate.
Because the job still gets done – but not by you. 😉
Maybe your husband can take over dinner or packing lunches a few times a week.
Kids can start making their beds or doing their laundry.
Maybe your mom or a mommy’s helper can come watch your little ones while you get some DIY time.
Think about your schedule. And find a few ways that you can delegate some of your tasks.
Delegation is definitely a win-win that you can benefit from.
5. Organize your project ahead of time
There’s nothing like FINALLY having time for your diy project, and then you can’t find the painters tape, or the ribbon you wanted to use, or the tools you need.
Or, maybe your workspace is covered in junk.
Or, maybe you can’t find the website with the instructions (or the pin you thought you pinned).
Take a few minutes during the day and get your project, your workspace, and your instructions organized.
Read through the instructions to familiarize yourself with the steps (it’s like pre-reading – can you tell I was a literacy teacher?!)
When you finally have the time, you can jump right in.
6. Multi-task, multi-task, multi-task
Talking on the phone?
Get the dishes washed. Delete your emails. Steam the floor.
Have a slow eater in your family?
Clean up the kitchen while they’re finishing up. Make the kids lunches for the next day. Write down your shopping list.
As much as you want to relax, using this time wisely lets you cross TWO things off your list, instead of one. How’s that for productivity?!
6. Put the devices down
Even though I manage my time well, my cell phone is my downfall.
I check Facebook, then I see what’s trending on twitter.
I look at the news, my instagram feed, and of course, reply to all my text messages.
Yet, once I started realizing all of the time I was wasting, my mind was blown.
All those minutes add up into hours a day. Those hours across a whole week – the number was insane.
Even though I love to relax by checking my phone, I would much rather be spending this time on my DIY projects.
7. Use wait time to the max
During my college orientation, one of the deans gave amazing advice that I still follow today.
He said that in the next four years, you will find yourself waiting a lot.
Waiting for that awkward amount of time in between classes – where you have more than a few minutes but not enough time to go back to the dorm.
Waiting for professor’s office hours to start, waiting for your study group to show up, waiting for class to start.
He said that all that time adds up – so use it wisely.
His advice undoubtedly applies to more than just college.
Waiting is a big part of life, especially with kids.
So use those few minutes you are waiting in the school parking lot to answer emails or make a hair appointment.
It will make your to do list shorter later – giving you more time for your projects.
How do I start?
Pick just one or two of the above tasks to work on.
You’ll soon start to see that you’ve freed up some time for your DIY projects.
With your hectic schedule and the constant running, you will finally have time for yourself and the projects that you’ve been dying to start.