Nanny-less with two young kids, a blog and freelance writing job, I find that I suck big time at this entire being organized business. Meanwhile, my husband–a virtuoso in a field where women are reputed to be subject matter experts–is an adept juggler of tasks. He can breeze through any litany of chores, inserting one or two rounds of basketball in between, while there I am–bedraggled, hair unkempt, and could barely change out of my pajamas.
His energy is limitless and his efficiency is unparalleled. I resent and admire him for those very same qualities. For all my mommy angst towards the man who seems too eager to assume my role–on top of his duty as father to my children–I just can’t help but gush a little bit about those Superman qualities of his.
I never thought that I would say this, but I think it’s kind of cool how a guy can get so many things done on top of his own work responsibilities in the office. And, if there is anything at all that I have learned living with this man, it is working smarter and not necessarily harder that helps you get ahead each day and, ultimately, in life.
So, what are these “work smart” techniques that I’ve picked up from the husband over the years? Here they are:
I used to wonder where he’d draw his energy from; but knowing how he values his sleep, I shouldn’t be surprised. As it turns out, the secret behind his get-up-and-go attitude is six to eight hours of uninterrupted zzzs.
- Early Start
Except for his Friday night drinking sessions with the boys, he loves turning in early so that he gets a good head start the following day. Waking up early gives him time to start slow, drink in the silence and exercise before he plunges into some real work ahead.
- One Task At A Time
I’ve always admired him for the way he can handle so many things at the same time. But truth be told, my husband attributes his efficiency to focusing on one task at a time. Basically, it’s quality over quantity for him. Concentrate on the task at hand to come up with an excellent result and immediately move on to the next. Before you know it, you have accomplished more than you have intended.
For the husband, doing what’s important first always work best. For me, however, it’s getting the easier tasks out of the way as working on the more challenging parts can be time-consuming. Whichever way you choose to go about accomplishing your to-dos, prioritizing always works to anyone’s advantage.
- Efficiency is a Habit
Routine may sound ho-hum to you, but it’s a practical and effective way of getting things done. In the process of doing things over and over, you develop or discover better ways of accomplishing tasks which then over a period of time becomes a habit.
- It’s in the Attitude
Sure, I know a thing or two about this science of budgeting time and I’ve written about it once for a webzine and the other time for a defunct personal blog. But, I realized that preaching about what should be done is a lot easier than actually applying the techniques. As for my husband, managing time has less to do with keeping a planner or sticking to a timetable, rather it has always been more about his attitude towards work and life’s challenges.