Tag Archives: business owner

How far behind can I get before I need a time warp or worm hole to find my way back to any possible sense of normal?

I wonder who holds the secret to time management and time organization? I can’t imagine there are too many books and articles I haven’t read. I tried the time diary, but that just took too much time. I manage all of my lists (a master list for the week with a daily list of necessary items, a grocery list on the fridge, a pocket list for daily notes and the list of lists in my office… not kidding), I keep an eye on my calendars (one I carry with me, the mat calendar on my desk, the family calendar on the fridge and a write on/wipe off in my sewing studio… again, not kidding), and I set my timers/reminders every morning (I love that little ding on my phone… it saves me at least twice a day). But sometimes those things are just not enough.

I read that 8.4% of Americans suffer from “emotional chaos”; 40% of us do not take our allotted vacation time because we don’t want to deal with the mountain of work when we return, and a full 65% have daily feelings of “being overwhelmed  by inadequate time.” I can be found in all three of those demographics.

There was a good article in the Huffington Post by blogger Vanessa Loder about a new book by Brigid Schulte, who is an award-winning journalist for the New York Times. She is the best selling author of a new book: Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has The Time. In her book, Brigid discusses how time pressure and modern life have led to a constant feeling of being overwhelmed which is affecting our health and even the size of our brain. She shows us how role overload, something called  “time contamination” (I’m sure I suffer from this), social structures, and even our own subconscious beliefs can lead to this constant sense of urgency, consuming guilt, and a certainty that we are inadequate both at work and home.

The article is very interesting, and if Brianna gets ahold of this post, maybe she will link it for you (yes, I am inadequate both at work and at home). It compares American mothers and workers to Danish counterparts. We stay late to get everything done but if a Danish employee stays late they will be reprimanded as it would seem they must not be as productive as a fellow employee who can get all of their work done in the same 8 hours. Interesting. How can they be so much more focused?  It is certainly true I am distracted by all things shiny and anyone who speaks to me. We call it ADOP (attention deficit… Ohh Pretty!!), and it is equally true I could never complete my daily work in only 8 hours. That it just funny.

I wonder if I just take my leisure time for granted. My job is also my hobby so I think I forget to count all of the classes, samples and patterns I work on at home as “work”.  I sew in the evening but I never seen to get everything done that is on my list. And when I stay home during the day to get something done, people wonder if I have retired because they don’t see me at the shop.  A slippery slope down a mountain of sewing. A rough life….

I am going to spend the next two afternoons at home catching up. The tutorials, posts and patterns I have on my “to do” list are important. My secret weapons are loud music, ginger tea and warm socks.  I have to get caught up so I can enjoy my weekend. I have a retreat planned that I am hosting at the retreat house and I am REALLY looking forward to it. We have a fun group signed up and the casual comfort of a house vs the classroom will be fun.

so… watch for my videos and blog posts… my plan is to be caught up by Friday morning… (but no breath holding… just wishful thinking and prayers will do).

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Behind the Pen and Patch

I opened the Fabric Patch 15 years ago and have never regretted a single day. I am busier than ever, writing new patterns, developing new classes and clubs, making shop samples, professionally machine quilting, and working in the shop 5 – 6 days per week. If that’s not enough… now Brianna thinks I should write a blog.

Brianna is the energetic young voice of the shop. My 21 year old daughter that runs the business with me. I threaten to retire in about 10 years, but she knows I will never leave. Brianna has some great ideas, and I suppose people really are spending more time on their phones, tablets and computers. I certainly do. Not that I’m good at it… I don’t understand the difference between a tweet and a post… but I guess I can understand why some of you might want to see some great new ideas, patterns, tricks, tips and projects. So I will commit to finding the time to work on this new blog at least two times a week.

At the moment, it is 11:30 at night and I am finally done for the day. I spent today working on machine quilting a customer’s quilt, then cleaning my sewing studio. It wasn’t all that messy to begin with, but I wanted to re-organize both my “project cupboard” and my scrap drawer and do some purging! I found a few quilt tops that just needed a border or two that I am going to finish up, and three projects to give to Thelma (she takes all of the “un-lovables” and turns them into something nice). I was also able to put together a huge box of fabric for the Ephrata High School Independent Living Class (formally known as Home Ec) for their sewing projects. It will be nice to have the space it freed up. I have attached some “after” pictures of my project cupboard. There are currently 37 projects on the 5 shelves. That’s not as bad as it has been!

I will start working on the quilt tops tomorrow – I’ll check in with you and show pictures…

Good night!