08 November 2013

20 minute Day

It was with such purpose that I awoke to start this day.  I had decided to divide my free hours into blocks of 20 minutes, three blocks an hour, between 9.00 am and 3.00 pm.  In other words 18 segments of time in which to get things done!  It wasn't going to be all work and no play ... where's the fun in that?  It was to be a dizzy mix of work and play.  I made a list before I began.

The above photo of my kitchen bench and window sill shows a calm, clean and tidy scene complete with a freshly baked banana loaf (thanks to Girl 1 who started baking at 6.00 am before school, one for her Uncle and one for us!)  But have a look at the scene before I gave it 20 minutes of my day.  A drooping rose, dishes drying, bits and bobs where they shouldn't be ... a general mess.

So the idea is you make a list of what you want to accomplish and then intersperse these jobs with fun things like reading, playing the piano, making a birthday card, having some on-line time, whatever takes your fancy really.  Spend 20 minutes with a chore/task/job, then 20 minutes of fun.

I feel rather reluctant to show the state of my bedside table, complete with a substantial layer of dust, another wilted flower, jewellery not put away etc, but then I couldn't show you what a mere 20 minutes from 10.00 until 10.20 changed it into!

The after photo :

My desk was not useable.  There was not a square inch in which to work on, so 11.20 - 11.40 this mess became a much calmer space.

The after photo :

Are you getting the idea?  Are you thinking you may want to try this some time?  It works a treat if you can keep it up!!  And you can constantly reward yourself with something nice to do.  This is the spot behind my bedroom door.  It was much tidier when I had a little cabinet here but with the recent room shuffle it has found a new home and my things were packed into a box and displayed very badly!

Twenty minutes later, and calmness reigns again.  Ah, deep breath.

I didn't really think I could keep the momentum up for six hours, that was a tall order and when the phone call came through from hubby to go and have a late lunch together, my 20 minute day came to an end.  But I achieved so much, so many pockets of the house are free of clutter and tidied or washed.  And I had the chance to play the piano, read a book and do some things at my lovely cleared desk.

Speaking of books, after almost seven years of living in this house, we have purchased a book case and some of my books have been unpacked.  It's a treasure trove of bookish memories.  Just revisited Catherine Gaskin for a bit of romance and history, and now I'm re-reading "The Photograph".  Sometimes it's good not to have a brilliant memory as this book is very familiar but I can't remember what happens in the end!!

Happy Weekend,


  1. a great idea Trudy, your bits and pieces do look quite interesting though! nice to tackle small amounts and have rewards, Heather x

  2. Hello Trudy, I've just found you via my lovely friend Maria, and so glad I did! I have some boring chores today, o I'm going to try your tip but I think I'll need 30 mins for each thing. You did achieve an awful lot, and thoroughly deserved the lunch treat!

    love from your latest follower

    Claire xxx

    1. Hi Claire, thanks for popping in and for following, how nice! Good luck with your *30* minute day!!
      Trudy x

  3. What a great idea. Well done you for sticking to it for so long. I know well I'd get distracted with something after the first fifteen minutes.

  4. What a good idea - I am guilty of 'floating' through days and not getting stuck in to one project but flitting around doing alot but not achieving enough. I am going to give the 20/20 idea a go and see if it focuses me a bit. Lily. xxx

  5. Love that idea! I'm going to have to try that. I get overwhelmed with so much to do but 20 minutes of work and 20 minutes of play would work out very nicely. Thank you so much for this, Trudy.

  6. Excellant use of time..... i think i may have to have a go at this myself...one question, did it feel like you were really rushing in those twenty minutes of work, of was it all calm?.....and were you knackered at the end of the day?..........and seeing the amount of dust on your bedside table has now made me feel a whole heap better about the amount of dust on mine ;)xxxx

  7. Ha! It's nice to see that I'm not the only dust collector. I like the idea but I still don't think I'd be that productive in 20 minutes but I'll give it a go.

  8. 18 segments of time - a genius (but exhausting?) idea which you illustrated so well with your photos. There is nothing so pleasing as tackling a dusty, untidy corner and imposing order and beauty on it. Then lunch out with hubby, even better. x

  9. What a great idea - I always start off with a list of jobs, but get distracted, Rewarding myself with a 20 minute treat will be the way to go, as long as I don't get carried away with a good book.

  10. Hello Trudy!
    How are you travelling? Can you believe we're on the cusp of December?
    I thought you might like to know that I am hosting Reverb again this year. It'd be a privilege to have you join us.
    Everything you need to know can be found at: http://www.katmcnally.com/p/reverb13.html
    We kick off on Sunday and it is going to be AMAZING. Hope to see you there!
    Kat xxx

  11. I missed this post ... what a brilliant idea :)

  12. I loved this post! So clever of you to work and play for as long as you weren't interrupted.
    Such sweet vingette's of color and joy of your possessions to display here and there!
    Very lovely.
    Teresa in California


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