Gail Gauthier: Time Management Tuesday: Fallback Plans
From: Original Content
August 28, 2012 at 08:32PM
Yesterday morning I finished the second of two tasks I’d been working on for a couple of weeks. What did that mean? It meant that I found myself in a period of transition, that phase between ending one project and beginning another. I know I have trouble with transitional time and tend to waste it. Sure enough, I got myself some lunch and went on-line. Which is fine. I’m delighted if I can stay away from Facebook and the news sites until I’m eating lunch. Unfortunately, I stayed there for way too long yesterday, even ending up looking for local friends on Facebook. (And I found one.)
I was finally able to shift gears and get back into some kind of work because I had a list of blogs I want to contact regarding some promotion for the e-book I’m publishing…sometime. I rechecked the blogs and came up with topics for guest posts to pitch. Not a bad little project.
But I was only able to do it because I already had it in mind. It was something I was able to fall back on during a period of time that I was just blowing away.
Believe it or not, I have a fallback workout program for days when I’m not feeling well. This summer I came up with a short fallback yoga practice for days when I don’t have time for my already short practice. As God is my witness, we have a fallback weekend getaway planned for October in case the one we’ve been trying to go on since last fall has to be cancelled once again because of bad weather. We are developing a list of backup activities ready to go for those weekends we find out at the last minute that we don’t have elder care duty and, thus, have an opportunity to do something if only we could think of something.
Fallback plans are just as important for work. Situations change rapidly. The end of a project can creep up on you and without knowing what other things you have to do, you could easily end up wasting far more than an hour or two. For writers, especially writers who have been publishing a while, it’s not that difficult to have a multitude of fallblack plans–marketing, revising short fiction and essays, researching markets, researching editors, professional reading, studying, cleaning out files, and going over notes from workshops come to mind, just off the top of my head.
Actually, fallback plans may be the only hope of getting through all this stuff.