November 2017
The Anticrastination Tip Sheet

From Rita Emmett
Author of The Procrastinator’s Handbook and
The Clutter-Busting Handbook

You will never find time for anything.
If you want time, you must make it.
--- Charles Buxton

In creating, the hardest part is
To begin.
--- Anonymous



Does it feel as if lately the world is spinning faster than usual? Does it amaze you that we are already in November?

Here are a few ideas for any overwhelming time --- whether you are planning an event or holiday celebration --- or simply swamped with too much to do. Some tips from me, some from our perceptive readers.

  1. MAKE TWO LISTS: One lists EVERYTHING you need to do. The other is the list you make each day to turn big projects into small daily tasks.
  2. PLAN YOUR DAY: Know what you want to get done and WRITE IT DOWN. When a million interruptions and distractions pop up, your written list helps remind you what you want to do.
  3. PRIORITIZE: use your list to decide what’s most important to complete first.
  4. ASK FOR HELP:  Someone might be willing to take part in making the list, thinking it through, decorating, cooking, inviting, anything. Try it. Ask.
  5. APPRECIATE “PRECIOUS POCKETS OF TIME”: Review your list while waiting before a late-starting meeting or during a TV commercial, empty the dishwasher while waiting for the microwave to ding, brainstorm menu or decorating ideas while waiting at the doctor’s office.
  6. STRIVE FOR EXCELLENCE, NOT PERFECTION: Perfection is hardly ever achievable. 
    A Perceptive Reader, Matt Deaton wrote: I find that "giving myself permission" to decide certain projects are excellent enough is my most effective time saver. I'm teaching an online philosophy class, and decided to post weekly lectures on YouTube rather than simply providing written notes. I've recorded a dozen, and every single one could be improved – I left something out, or used a less than perfect example, or stumbled in my delivery, etc. But rather than spend additional hours re-shooting/editing, I just do my best with time I have, hit that upload button and move on."
  8. LEARN TO SAY “NO”: When life gets crazy-busy, take on only those commitments you know you have time for and that you truly care about.
  9. Do A “POWER HOUR”: Set a timer for one hour, ignore everything else and take no breaks while you dig into the task you want completed.
  10. ASK “WHY AM I DOING THIS?” You might discover you are spending time on activities that really mean nothing to you.
  11.  SCHEDULE BREAKS: Perceptive Reader Barb wrote: A very wise Naturopath talked to me about 'stretching things out', taking rest breaks, not starting new things until ones on the go were finished, etc. If your calendar shows big meetings or events back-to-back, try to schedule a “catch up day” for everything you’ve ignored during the crazy-busy time (including deal with new mail as it arrives and handle each paper only once.)
  12. BE REALISTIC ABOUT TV/SOCIAL MEDIA/GAMING TIME: If you consider this use of your time to be your relaxation or reward for completed tasks, then that is “taking a break”. But if these activities creep in and keep you from accomplishing what you wanted to do …. And the result is anxiety, guilt, stress, etc., then set boundaries on time you spend on them.

Let’s hear from you. What tips do you use to survive super busy times?


Are you surrounded by out-of-control papers? Doesn’t it seem that more papers and information are flooding into your life than ever before? Do you feel helpless with all the paper clutter that surrounds you?

“Recovered Pack Rat” Rita Emmett, who once was on the brink of being a hoarder when people had to walk a path through stacks of papers everywhere, offers easy and quick solutions to defeat that paper surrounding you. Once you triumph over your paper clutter, you’ll not only feel like a conquering hero, you’ll also be able to find what you want, know where to put in-coming papers and think more clearly because you are no longer living in chaos and clutter.

Come join Rita in a 1-hour class by phone. No computer needed.
Wednesday, November 29 at 1:00 PM Central Time
Cost: FREE.
For phone number to call for the class that day, register at 888-600-2560 or


Please share this Tip Sheet with 2 or 3 friends who would be interested. And feel free to use this message in your blog or newsletter, as long as you include my bio and contact info:

Rita Emmett
Author of The Procrastinator's Handbook,
The Clutter-Busting Handbook and
Manage Your Time to Reduce Your Stress: A Handbook for the Overworked, Overscheduled, and Overwhelmed
2331 Eastview
Des Plaines, IL 60018
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This is So much time, so little to do. Scratch that, reverse it! ~~ Willie Wonka