When the school year starts and life gets hectic, it’s time for me to kick into “15 Minute Mode” with needlework, or I’d never get anything done. If I want to make any progress on needlework, I have to snatch time here and there. And, believe it or not, snatching 15 minutes here and 15 minutes there makes all the difference in progress! I’ll show you what I mean…
In trying to get ahead and keep ahead in my Needle Arts Class, I’ve been stitching like a mad woman, trying to get two initials onto the spot sampler. I was a bit ambitious and selected larger initials that are somewhat intricate. (I mean, really – whatever happened to the four-stroke M?!!) To get this thing finished before I assigned the students to finish their initials, I had to work it in lots of very short sittings, squeezing in 15 minutes here, 20 minutes there.
When I finished the M, I was surprised that suddenly, it was finished! And I wondered just how many short sessions it had taken to complete it. But of course, I hadn’t kept track!
So when I set out on the second initial, I decided to keep track on the chart where I stopped and started, just to see how many short sessions it would take to complete the C.
So far, I’m up to 10.
They’re not all 15-minute sessions – some are longer, some shorter. It’s just a matter of snatching time during the day where I could make a little progress.
For me, the 15-minute mentality when life is busy has several advantages:
1. I actually do make progress on needlework. Instead of setting needlework aside completely and saying to myself, “No time for this these days,” I keep it available so that I do make time for it.
2. It acts as a carrot. I get other things done first and quickly so that I can have that 15 minute reward.
3. It is a source of relaxation in the middle of busy days. When I sit down to stitch for just a small block of time, I know that during this block of time, all I have to do is stitch, and I don’t let other things bother me. I don’t even let the clock bother me. I try to control that feeling of wanting to Rush-Stitch so that I get as much done as possible. Instead, I don’t think about the clock (I set a timer for as much time as I have), and I just relax and stitch. When the timer goes off, I move on.
4. Believe it or not, once I start thinking with that 15-minute mentality, other areas of my life become much more organized. I know that if I don’t let my organization slip on other things, I will enjoy those 15 minutes a whole lot more!
So what do you do when life gets busy – and seemingly too busy to embroider? How do you make sure you fit in your needlework? Or do you? Do you feel there are just some times in your life that you have to put your stitching aside until the phase passes? Or are you adamant about finding time to stitch? I’d love to hear your feedback on the topic!! Feel free to leave a comment below.
Up this week on Needle ‘n Thread: a book review of a book I’ve been waiting for, and a Give-Away of the Very Same Book! I can’t wait! That’ll be towards the end of the week. This week, I’ll also show you (up close) one of my favorite out-of-print books that I refer to a lot. And at some point, I’ll be talking about how we’re going to be incorporating surface embroidery stitches on the spot samplers. There’ll be some other little tidbits in there, too! Enjoy your Monday, and I hope it’s a great week for you!