This is a three part post on time management for writers.

The story so far: I am watching two little children, ages 2 and 4 weeks old, for free.  I stress the “for free” part, not because I want any kudos (the path to charity being its own reward), but because many work-from-home mommies need extra income and that isn’t what this article is about.  This is more in-line with any parent who has a young child, and needs to squeeze out some extra time for themselves.

With anything in life, the more prepared you are, the better off you’ll be … at least usually.  So today, I am going to focus on what works for me.

Go to Bed and Get Up at the Same Time

This one is particularly hard for me, because I have a caffeine addiction and I usually make the mistake of drinking Coke at supper, which kills my sleeping habits.  But I’m also a habitual early morning person.  Going to bed late, of course, means that I always get up late.  And getting up late kills my day.

I’ve enacted a strict, no-caffeine policy after noon and I’ve become religious about going to bed at the same time each night, resulting in waking up fresh and ready to start my day.

To-Do Lists are Your Friend

I keep a notepad by my bedside for any last minute stuff that I want to jot down.  I also have a master calendar that I pencil in engagements, things that I have to do, and other stuff.  If I write them down, I don’t think about them.  I dedicate time later, when it is more appropriate, to think about them.

If Nothing Else, Schedule Time for Your Writing

This one works for those who have a very tight schedule, or for people who like to/have to keep schedules.  I’m not a schedule keeper, but I know this works for some of my friends.

Prioritize Your Writing

I’ve found in my life that if I really don’t want to do something, then I habitually procrastinate.  Sometimes I do want something, in the case of my writing, but I procrastinate anyway.  However, if I consciously make it my number one priority, then it will happen.  Why?  Because I want it to happen.

What other ways can you prepare?