Sprinting will get you there.

sprintThe term sprinting usually is associated with running but I was introduced to it last year at a writers retreat and since then I have applied it to a way of getting tasks done. The more I use this methodology the more I am amazed at how much I can get done in a short, 30 minute sprint. You can set the time at anything but I’ve found 30 minutes works best for me.

When I’m writing I set a timer. There are a number of them on-line. I use Time And Date. The object is to stay on the task at hand. If I’m editing a document I don’t switch over to check email or jot down and idea for a future plot or check out facebook. I stay on the task of editing the document I’m on. Same applies for any computer task like updating your addresses, or recipe files.

I also use it for things like cleaning. For this I use the timer on the stove, set it to 30 minutes and again stay with the task or tasks I’ve chosen. I’ve found I can vacuum all the floors in 30 minutes. Clean the kitchen with time left over.

Again, think sprint. Whatever time works for you, set the timer and when it goes off take a break. Walk around, stretch, check that email you’re itching to look at. Whatever constitutes a break for you.

I’ve found that no matter how onerous the task, knowing I only have to do it for 30 minutes makes it easier to do. Of course some things I really enjoy and the 30 minutes is here and gone before I know it. So I take a short break and set another 30 minutes.

2013 is promising to be a busy year here and I am planning to sprint through it. So if you aren’t a miler you might want to see if it works for you


8 responses to “Sprinting will get you there.

  1. Since I was with you at last year’s retreat, I’ve fully embraced sprinting, too. It’s amazing how a daunting task becomes doable if you think about only having to work on it for 30 minutes.

  2. that’s cool. I’ve done 1 hout writing sprints but never applied that to other areas of my life. Good plan. Hope you keep up the habit. It’s a great one to have

  3. Wow! Must try this out. I’m always running trying to get so much done and feeling pretty exhausted. I try ever so hard not to read emails when editing or working to the degree I even work on a different computer with no internet access but pacing at 30 mins a task sounds a great idea. Will let you know if it works for me. Thanks, Lavada

  4. Valerie J. Patterson

    What a great concept, Lavada. I will try this, too. I have set aside larger chunks of time for writing–like an entire morning–but it doesn’t always work, Maybe this will. Thanks for sharing. 😛

  5. You’ve mentioned this concept to me before, Lavada, and I find it really works for me. I’ve not used it for housework though, so will give it a try. It certainly thwarts the tendency to hop from one task to another 🙂

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