Productivity tip of the day... or probably the year

Posted by Beth Cyr on

Because chances are I'll not have any more productivity tips! This is my new favorite though. I've been making a list in the morning first thing when I get in the studio. Next to each taskI write a time that I'd like to spend on that item. 

Something like:

Eat: 20 min

Fb: 10 min

Instagram: 10 min

Pinterest: 15 min

Blog: 5 min

Email: 20 min

And then..... I have Siri set a timer. I just hold down the button and say "set timer for 5 min" or whatever the time. Siri often likes to give some witty come back about how she can't take the suspense. It is so much easier than going in and setting the timer manually. It also keeps me realistic with how much time do I really want to spend doing this thing. If the timer goes off and I'm not quite done, that is okay. I can either reset it or just finish up as quickly as possible. 

iPhone timer screenshot

It helps to keep me focused and moving on to each task instead of lagging behind or wasting time. I also think there is something to just saying it out loud, like verbalizing I'm only going to spend 5 minutes doing this thing tricks my brain in to acting accordingly. It is also a good way to realize how much time you actually spend on any one thing. Like setting a timer for 20 min for my email and I finish up in 15. Or setting a timer for this blog post for 5 min and realizing it takes 20 min.  

You should give it a try and let me know how it goes! 

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What has impacted me recently - Blog-o-sphere Think Tank - Jan. edition

Posted by Beth Cyr on

January's topic:  "What has impacted you recently?" (and how/why?) ( a book you read, movie you saw, something happening in the world around you, something someone said to you....What made you stop and think? Maybe it expanded your mind, or you learned something new as a result, or think something new?)

Two things come to mind fairly quickly. One is that I've been reading The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron. It is a great tool for looking deeply at how all things in our lives, past and present, affect the way we are creative. 

The second is the new challenge I started at the beginning of the year to make something every day. I love it!!! It is by far the best challenge I've started and I know I will finish this one. It is so freeing to just have the mentality of making something, anything. The fact that it doesn't have to be jewelry is super great. I tend to work slow and most of my processes mean it takes several days for me to finish a piece, so making one thing a day just didn't really work with the way I make jewelry. But just making something is really fun. It helps me to feel like I've accomplished something every day, even if it is just a small little drawing or an origami napkin when I went out to dinner. I don't have a desire to make jewelry every day, but I definitely have a desire to make something every day. I feel like it makes such a difference in the creativity I feel when making jewelry as well, which is something I'd lost at one point in my career... 

If you're interested in following along with the Make a Day 2016 project - you can follow me on Instagram @bethcyrarts, or you can search Facebook or Instagram for #makeaday2016 or check out the FB group - Make A Day 2016 - and join if you'd like to participate in making something every day! 

make a day items collage

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Etsymetal Blog Carnival - Jan. 2016 - Plans for 2016

Posted by Beth Cyr on

So this blog topic is pretty much the same as the one I posted for the other blogging group I'm in. But since it's been a couple weeks, there will be a couple of new things! 

The EtsyMetal directive: "Since we just looked back on 2015 lets look forward to 2016 and talk about what we have planned for the new year. Taking any classes, trips, goals for your business/personal life?"

I do actually have a couple of trips planned so far. I'll be going to Arizona for a few days, or maybe a week. I get to add it to my list of states! Some day I'll have all 50. Maybe by the time I'm 50! 

Another goal is to complete the yearly challenge this year that my EtsyMetal friends Victoria and Andrea set up (their blog links are listed below). In years past it has been earring a day or ring a day. There was even brooch a day which I did not even try (not a brooch person). This year is simple - "Make a Day" - every day, make something. Pretty simple right? That part is easy, but we also have to photograph and post to our facebook group every day too. I'll be posting to my Beth Cyr Arts Instagram feed for this project if you want to follow along! I'm starting off the year with learning origami and doing some zentangles. Both of which have been on my "list of things to do". I feel like this is a great opportunity to give myself a reason to do them. My first attempt at an origami something was interesting.... I used just basic printer paper in a 5 x 5, and found out the 2nd day that it was a little on the small side to be working with and not as nice as other "premade" origami paper. But, whatever, it was fun and I made it fancy with some markers I've had since I was about 10. I didn't know markers could last 25 years, but apparently these are the never ending markers. 

First origami flower during make a day 2016

And on a totally different topic, part of my new year's resolution is to not be so stressed out when I'm driving. It's kind of a problem. I don't know yet how I'm going to achieve this, but it is a goal I am going to work towards - 2016 - no longer hate everyone when I'm driving. I found myself this morning trying to just say "that's nice" to everything. I think I need to come up with a better plan... if you have any tips, feel free to toss them my way! 

As an update from my last blog post, I've signed up for the new accounting program! woohoo! First step is done. Now to set it up! I'd planned on taking this week to do it, but turns out I have a lot of jewelry I need to make. So... little bits this week and then next week in earnest. 

One last thing! I started reading The Artist's Way. So I'll be working on that for the next few months as well. It's really fabulous and I highly recommend it! 

Well, that's it for me at the moment - check in with the other participants this month!

2Roses: http://jewelrytutorial.blogspot.com/
andrea ring http://amuckdesign.blogspot.com

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