I might be a teeny-tiny bit obsessed with time management. This is the reason for my love of business books. If I can find out how to do things more efficiently, I will be the first to embrace the idea.
All this is also, by the way, the reason I appreciate educating my children at home. Homeschooling is just vastly more efficient.
A few months ago, I wrote a blog post about juggling well inspired by Michael Gelb’s book More Balls than Hands. In the book, he differentiates between two management styles. He calls them the project finisher and the time allocater, adding that the latter is far more efficient than the former.
Efficiency in Homeschooling
All this led me to think: Well, too bad for the project finishers! Ha! No, just kidding. While I understand the draw of being a project finisher, I began to think of ways that I could incorporate aspects of time allocation into our routine.
The easiest way to do this is by using a checklist.
If you’re one of those homeschoolers who loves to finish a project, a checklist can be incredibly helpful. I have mentioned the importance of a template in our schedule before. Topping off that schedule with a checklist might just be the icing on the cake.
There are a few reasons this works. As someone who likes to see things get done and stay done, a checklist just feels right. There are people who are happy to touch a project here and another one there and let go. But I am not one of them. At least, leaving things undone leaves me with a sense of incompleteness. That translates itself into stress.
A checklist resolves that stress. Checking something off (or giving the children a sticker – or signing off on something – anything that works for your family) helps incredibly in managing my time. I know I will do the same tomorrow, but at least for today, the task is finished.
And voila! The project finisher just became a time allocater.