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I’m a single mom who works away from home and homeschools my children.  My time is PRECIOUS! I have had to be ruthless about cutting some things out that were just time-sucking my day away. When I first returned to work, I would come home, get a snack, and watch an episode (or five) on Netflix. I reasoned that I had been at work all day so I deserve a break before switching hats for my next task.

Then I found myself always stressing over getting things done, or more accurately not getting things done. And I just didn’t have enough time to do all that I wanted/needed to do. There were piles of laundry on the floor. We were eating fast food WAY too often. And I was always tired, which didn’t make for a very pleasant mom to be around.

Here are five ways I have found to be more productive that I would like to share with you. After all, these days we are all busier, yet not necessarily productive, than we need be.

Track Where You are Spending Your Time

When I did this, it became really obvious why I wasn’t getting done everything that I wanted to get done. This is when I became ruthless about my time. Some might even call me downright stingy. But, with all that is going on these days and trying to replace my job income with my blog, being stingy is what it takes. No guilt!

Silence Your Phone

Or better yet put it in another room. It didn’t matter what I was doing, I always had my phone handy. And every time it chimed I was looking at it. This was a huge time-suck for me! I found putting my phone in another room while working has helped me tremendously!

Take Regular Breaks

I know, this sounds a little counter-productive to getting things done, but you will be amazed at how a 15-20 minute break from what you are doing will refresh you and help with your focus. My body tells me when I need a break. You know what I’m talking about. Your eyes start getting glassy and your back starts screaming at you. Okay, maybe that’s pushing it a bit, but it’s hard to stop when you’re in the middle of something.  Unless you’re one of those with perfect posture 😉 Even if you’re just walking around your house, checking in with the kiddos and getting a nice cool drink of water, take a break. By the way, this IS NOT a good time to be checking your phone.

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Close All Other Tabs

Okay, this one goes along with putting your phone in another room. It really doesn’t help to get rid of the phone if you’re constantly checking your email and facebook while working on the computer. CLOSE THOSE TABS and watch your productivity rise.

Write Distractions Down

It never fails, whether I am doing my Bible study, writing a post, or boning up on Pinterest, everything that needs to be done comes flooding into my mind. The best way I’ve found to take care of this distraction is to always have a pen and paper handy. When something comes to mind, I simply write it down then get back to what I was doing.

After implementing these 5 simple steps, I am able to work full-time away from home, homeschool my children, keep my house acceptably clean, and take online courses to better myself and work towards working from home. All this without being exhausted. I even have time to read (in addition to read-alouds with the kiddos) or get a short nap in if needed.

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