Thursday, January 10, 2013

January Doldrums

We're only 10 days into January, and I already feel like I'm falling behind. I think carrying over too many unfinished projects from last year is weighing on me, combined with all I want to accomplish in 2013. I feel like I need a little extra inspiration this year.

As silly as it sounds, having a pretty planner in which to write down daily tasks always motivates me. I think these planners from dozi are super cute.

This "plan of action" printable from Sam Osborne also seems like it would be excellent for helping to prioritize tasks and keep me organized.

In the past, I've always preferred to write down "to do" lists instead of using apps or desktop calendars, but I'm willing to try something new. I've heard there are apps where you can "cross off" a task when you're finished with your finger and it drops down to the bottom of the list, which sounds like good geeky fun to me.

Buuuuut, as much as I know that I do need to get organized and plan my days, I also know that getting things done is not just about writing things down. We all go through ruts where motivation is lacking and it seems a struggle just to get up and do the things one must each day, let alone be creative. If you're feeling the same way, maybe you'll find some inspiration in these words:

“Never give up. And never, under any circumstances, face the facts.” - Ruth Gordon

Anyone have any wise words they'd like to share or tricks to get out of a motivation rut? Please leave a comment! :)


  1. I work by the wisdom of Dory from Finding Nemo...

    'Just Keep Swimming'

    Plus remembering that nothing worth having ever comes easily! This is what I remind myself when I'm revising and struggling with work and college!

  2. ohh..I know how you feel. I always go through these creative ruts where I can think of anything to make and I'm so unsatisfied with the supplies that I have on hand to make the things I want. I have found working on one thing at a time is very helpful. For example.. I started working on new pouches last week but instead of trying to get a complete pouch done in a day I work on parts of it over several days such as cutting fabric, drawing a design, applying interfacing, and then sewing(which I'm doing today) It helps me feel less overwhelmed with projects.

  3. I came across a great quote today by Alain de Botton that I think applies to my all too frequent lack of productivity...'Wasting time is mostly just fear.' I find I put things off a lot because I'm too much of a perfectionist and my expectations are so high that I'm terrified of not doing things well..or well enough. I guess everyone has different reasons for putting things off. But I do find lists help a lot and your printable one above looks particularly good. I need something that makes me feel somewhat accountable...even if it is just ticking a box at the end of the day.

  4. So far what's working best for me is the "Task" feature in Gmail. It opens up whenever I go into my email so it's always in my face. Now if I can figure out how to get it on my phone, that would be perfect. :)

  5. lists lists lists. i'm a legal pad girl. that reminds me.......i don't think i've actually written one list yet this year. how did that happen?

  6. I love calendars and lists. This year I created my own so it has everything I need to help me get and stay organized. I love that printable to-do list! Good luck with finding an app that will help you with your to-do list process. If you find a good one I hope you share it on your blog.
    Everyday Inspired

  7. Love those planners! I had been eying those as well! And the printable is great-- perfectly organized for the way I usually categorize things. Thanks for sharing that little gem! And like I wrote about this morning, make sure you take a break every now and again to clear your head! :)

  8. I love writing lists and find it extreamley satisfying to cross each thing off, handy considering I'm a stationary geek! I splurged this year on the family celander,365 book, list pad and meal planner from Kikki K this year to keep my mind organised.
    Found you via the Blog Hop xxx

  9. I'm a big to do list maker. I love seeing my day's tasks in front of me and crossing things off as I go :) Helps me stay focused.
    Love that true!

  10. Mary, that you are thinking about this means you are doing great. I've read the comments above me, and it's an echo of what I write here. Music does it for me. I make to-do lists. I have a page on my computer just for those wonderful lists, I can scroll all the way up to last year to see what I did and didn't do. It amuses me. But I find that on those days when I lack motivation, or I feel overwhelmed, listening to something magical gets me up and going like a miracle.

    I love both planners. The first for their colors, and the second for it's humor. And I agree, Dreams only work when we do. And because we are human, we won't always work the way we want to. And that's okay, perhaps on those days the universe is trying to tell us to do something differently.

    Happy Friday, Mary.


  11. When I'm suck in a rut, I make a list of things that need to get done. Even boring things, like going to the grocery store or getting an oil change. For some reason, thinking about all aspects of my life kick starts the creative juices again and makes me want to get back to work.

    I like "today's plan of action." It's sassy. :-)

  12. I'm a list writer too. I love to see the task crossed off, but still there to show how much I've done. I may or may not have been known to write things I've already done on a list so I can go ahead and cross them off too:) I started using a list on my iphone for this and love it!

  13. A new pretty notebook/planner always motivates me, too. It's like you HAVE to write in them because they're too gorgeous to wait to be used! Haha.

  14. If you're not particularly inspired and it's making you uneasy, try taking an inspirational break. The fact that it is January doesn't mean you can't or shouldn't do it! After all, being inspired is like being in love: you can't force it. Sure you can get things done without it, but it doesn't feel half as good that way... :)

    "Break the impossible into possibilities". It helps me break paralysis, creative or otherwise.

  15. this quote really speaks to me!! Also I need those notebooks xx

  16. Ah, organizing, organizing! Have you noticed how in search of simplification and organization we get to more stuff to do the job? If only we could keep it simpler...