The little bits eat your time, just like the little things eat your money. Little bits add up to big bits until there are no bits left. Without a way to keep up and regulate the little bits of time, you won’t have the time you need to get things gone.
Stamp Down Your Little Bits
I read a story about an old farmer who had an old mule. The mule had outlived his usefulness. All the mule did was eat the farmer’s food and get in the farmer’s way.
One day the mule fell into a well. It turned out the well didn’t work either and was another thorn in the side of the farmer. It made sense to take care of both at the same time.
The farmer loaded his wheel barrel with some dirt and dumped it into the well, right on top of the donkey. He went to get another load. The donkey shook the dirt off of his back and stamped it down with his hooves. The little bits can be beneficial or burying – it all depends on how you manage them.
Each little bit of dirt got the farmer closer to filling in the dangerous well, and closer to getting rid of the donkey (or so he thought).
The donkey had other plans. Each little bit of dirt was shaken off and stamped down until the well was almost full and the donkey walked right out.
The little bits can be beneficial or burying – it all depends on how you manage them.
Manage the Little Bits
Add EVERY DAY little bits to your to-do list or calendar.
It will feel like you are crowding your schedule. It will look like you’re crowding your schedule. You may actually be crowding your schedule. These daily little bits – like making your bed, taking the kids to school, or walking the dog – are things you are going to do whether you schedule the time or not. If you don’t schedule the time then you will steal the time from something else because they must be done.
A husband came home to his wife and three kids. He looked around the house where toys were scattered, laundry was waiting to be folded, and dinner ingredients sat waiting to be cooked. He stared at his wife for a moment before asking, “What did you do all day?”
The wife didn’t throw anything or yell, instead, she burst into tears. “I don’t know.”
The husband changed his tune, put his arm around his crying bride, and soothingly offered to help. “Let’s walk through your day.”
She calmed her tears long enough to list the things she had done from the start of her day to the moment he walked in. “I got up with the baby and fed her. It took a little longer to get her back down after the feeding and by then John (the two-year-old) was up and going. We started the laundry together and then took a moment to have breakfast. The baby was back up and needed changing, then the dog needed to go for a walk. I had to bundle everyone up because of the sudden cold snap last night. I got the baby back down for a nap and then read to John until he fell asleep. I changed out the laundry before I remembered I hadn’t cleaned up from breakfast. Just as I got the dishes put away, the dryer alarm went off because I had forgotten to silence it. That started the dog barking which woke up the baby and John. We all got calmed down. I took out the laundry that caused the ruckus, started the next load, and fixed lunch. I think I ate while John did, but I had to feed the baby so I wasn’t sure. I had just set out supper ingredients when you walked in.” She pointed to a list on the refrigerator. “I had a list.”
The husband smiled and wiped away the tear rolling down her cheek. “I think I know what happened. You spent your day doing the little bits and they didn’t leave time for the list.”
The little bits eat your day if you don’t schedule time for the little bits. When you don’t plan out those things you have to do then you end up feeling like you didn’t do anything. The truth of your situation may be that the little bits are eating your list.
Create a Meal Plan
We all have to eat. It’s a daily task made more challenging when we aren’t the only ones we have to feed. Even if it is a one-man show, it can be easy to let it pass by without a thought – until you start snapping at folks or making mistakes because you haven’t taken a break to fuel up.
A meal plan guides you to take out the meat to thaw, to order the pizza, or to call for a reservation. Your menu serves as your map to food, and food is a very important little bit that none of us need to forget (and some of us never want to forget).
- Take advantage of the meal delivery services. You can choose the food, they send you the ingredients, you bring it to the table.
- Make the most of technology. Websites will let you put in the ingredients you have and offer recipes based on your entry. Apps let you keep your grocery list ON YOUR PHONE and you can share it with others (so you don’t get to the story and the only thing you remember is where you left your list).
- Take the time to review what you have in your pantry and refrigerator. Start your planning from there. Remember to add grocery shopping to your little bits list (even if you shop online and have your groceries delivered).
Remember the Breaks
A young boy received a battery-powered fire truck for his birthday. Fortunately for his mom, the new toy came with batteries. The day after his birthday, the boy asked his mom for more batteries.
The mom assumed the batteries given with the toy must have been old. It was the only reason she could think they would have worn out so fast.
Another couple of days passed and the boy again requested more batteries. The mom knew the batteries she had provided had been new. “Did your truck stop working?”
“Bring me the truck, please.” The mom now wondered if she would need to take the toy back to the store. If it quit working with new batteries then it had to be broken.
The boy handed the toy to his mom and sure enough, it wasn’t working. The mom put new batteries in the toy and as soon as the final one was in place, the siren started sketching and the mom almost dropped the toy.
The boy giggled. “I like when it makes that sound.”
Mom had a new theory. “Are you leaving it on all the time.”
The boy nodded, giggled, and skipped away with his toy.
If you go and go without a break, your batteries run down and you don’t work anymore. Scheduling time to refresh and recharge is the only way to ensure that you will take the time you need to keep your batteries from running down.
Time Keeps On Slipping
You have to keep up with your time if you want to keep your time from slipping away. The biggest issue you will have with your time is the little bits that slip past without notice. Those little bits add up. The biggest issue you will have with your time is the little bits that slip past without notice. Those little bits add up.
When you take a moment to corral the little bits, you end up managing time and resources as well. Find your way to keep up with those tasks and daily items that slip into your day and then make a habit of scheduling out all of them so that they munch away at your day until you are left with nothing but your unchecked to-do list.
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