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HubPages(Writing) And Housework – How To Get Them Both Done - Part 2

Updated on September 20, 2011

InHubPages And Housework – How To Get Them Both Done - Part 1, I explained how you could be more productive with both your writing and keeping on top of the domestic chores. When you work from home, people often expect you to have all of the time in the world, the truth is you don't.

If you want to actually be productive at anything, and let's face it, what's the point of wearing yourself into a frazzle only to discover that the house is in chaos and all of your writing pieces are incomplete. You don't need to work harder, you need to work smarter. Cheesy maybe, but oh so very true.

Are you a wanna be domestic goddess??

How do you divide your time?

See results

Organise your time

Getting organised and sticking with a pattern will reap huge rewards. Once you have been doing it for a while, a lot of your tasks become a 'habit', and a good habit makes for little stress, which is always good. If you're calm, you're more likely to be productive, if you're stressed, well, you just don't do as well. Fact!

If your life is in chaos and your production is suffering on all fronts, consider adopting a new pattern. If you keep doing the same things, you're going to get the same results. So don't complain about life if you are determined to keep repeating the same negative actions. Change your actions and you are guaranteed to get different results, I promise. Don't take my word for it, why should you, what authority am I? Change your actions in any area of your life as a small test, you will see for yourself that you will get different results to the ones you had previously been getting with the old actions.

If you want to find a good balance in your life, areas such as work, household, family and social need to be looked at. Time wise, is one of those more predominant than the others put together? Neglect of these other areas has serious ramifications, things build up and are then much harder to deal with.

Have you ever neglected the big pile of ironing that is sitting there staring at you? It just gets bigger and bigger, until it takes you the best part of a day to get it all done and put away. How about actually getting the laundry washed in the first place? Do you ever think “I'll do that tomorrow, it won't hurt for just one more day”? Only for you to end up having to do quite a few machine loads and it's difficult to dry because its raining!! Sound familiar?

By fitting these jobs into fractions, they can be slotted into your time without it having a negative impact on your writing. You need to take regular breaks from staring at the computer, for physical and psychological reasons. Your attention span and levels of concentration only last so long, you become less productive if you decide to continue working beyond this point. After taking a short break, your focus returns and you can concentrateonce again.

How to... Ideas

While you are taking these regular breaks, stay productive. As you should ideally take dozens of breaks a day, including going to the bathroom and making coffee. During these times, do a household task. If you go into the kitchen to make a cup of coffee, it's because you need a break from what ever you were doing. Use this opportunity to do a task while you're waiting for the kettle to boil. Sort through the laundry and put a load in the machine. While it's going through the wash cycle, you can take your coffee back to your work station and get some more work done. The next time you leave the computer, the machine will be finished and you can take the clothes out to dry. Then once again returning to your work, satisfied that you have done yet another job on the list, it's a good feeling.

Here's some idea's on the kind of things you could implement to make your life so much more productive when working from home. Build up your routine, get into the good habits of doing the tasks whenever you get the chance. Letting it build up makes the thought of it overwhelming, once it's under control, keeping it like that will be easy.

First thing in the morning, while you're waiting for the computer to fully load after just turning it on, make use of those few minutes. Unload the clean dishes from the dishwasher and reload with any dirty dishes. Or put away clean dishes from the draining board, and run water to wash the next lot. You don't have to wash them right now, just run the water and make sure that it very hot.

Once your PC has loaded, you'll want to get stuck in. Take your coffee or beverage of choice and spend a little time doing whatever it is you like to do first. Read some important emails, check your stats, sign into FaceBook, anything you deem necessary. Although, be warned about the last one, it's a procrastination city, but that's another topic.

After you've drunk your coffee, return to the kitchen if you need to wash the dishes by hand. The water is already run so you just need to plunge straight in. You can put the kettle on to boil whilst your doing the dishes, then by the time it's boiled you will have done the dishes and can make yourself another coffee. Don't overdo it on the caffeine, but a lot of people drink several cups of tea or coffee first thing in the morning. It doesn't mean that the rest of the day will continue the same, so no worries.

There's a rule that states: “coffee in, coffee out”, which means that if you drink a lot of liquid, soon you will need to pee. You need to drink at least 2 lts a day, so make sure that you do. On one of your frequent trips to the bathroom, give it a quick clean while you're there. A quick once over for the toilet, or wipe out the sink after you've washed your hands, there's bound to be tooth paste on it somewhere, there always is in my house. Do one of these tasks per visit, not every time of course, that is unnecessary, but a few times a day gets it all done.

If you generally need to just get up from the computer and move around , then do so. Why not go and make a start on dinner? Peel the vegetables or any other task too numerous to mention, as I don't really know what your dinner plans are. If you're going to need grated cheese, grate it now and put it in a container in the refrigerator. Having baked potatoes with your meal? Pop them in the microwave to cook, then you can slightly oil and salt the skins and place them in the hot oven later on for 15mins, so that the skins are 'baked'. Need to chop onions or peel garlic? Do it now and put in an air tight container for later. There are many tasks you could do, choose whatever it is that applies to you.

Another job you could do whilst on a general break from your writing work, is get the vacuum cleaner out. Just getting it out doesn't do the job, you need to actually plug it in and turn it on. Then you have to navigate it around the areas that need to be done. You haven't forgotten right? This is quite a physical action and is excellent for getting the circulation going. It's not exactly a cardio work out, but it gets the blood pumping around the system and the muscles working. If you're sitting for long periods of time, you need to get up and move around often. Putting the vacuum cleaner around gets two jobs done at the same time, cleans the floors and gets you physically active. Sweet.

Got it??

So are you getting the idea now? Break down household chores and do them in micro bursts throughout the day, that is, when you have to take a break from the computer. Time is valuable and getting the most from it leaves us with much happier lives. Not feeling overwhelmed by your domestic duties is a great feeling, a one of “I'm in control”. That makes for a much happier, more content, highly productive you.

You might be thinking at this point: “when do I get time to myself, to just relax and do nothing?”. It is important to take some 'me' time now and again, you can get too wound up if you don't. However, there is 24 hours in a day, and with you getting the housework done efficiently and still having time to write excellent quality work, there should be some time left over for you to be slightly indulgent. Don't take advantage of this too much, limit it, at least until you have a good routine going and you are actually managing to get everything done. What is more important, spending another hour writing to finish a deadline or watching a tv program that you've either seen before or it will be on again another time? The choice is yours, but you know what I would suggest???

If you give it some thought and apply yourself a little, you will be mighty pleased with the results. If you would like a calm, organisedenvironment, you won't get it if you're surrounded by chaos. Being organised and achieving domestic goddess status has massive rewards. Your writing will be better and you'll feel better in yourself, more content.

If you have any particular weak areas or are overwhelmed with everything, let me know. Post a comment or email me and I'll try to guide and help you. The posts will help other people in the same position, they will be able to identify with certain things and hopefully find a way to change it for the better after reading this.

Here's to domestic bliss and harmony, and creative, productive writing. Good luck with your ventures, I hope you manage your time well.

More Articles By billabongbob

Want to read Part 1 of Writing and Housework and find out what precedes Part 2??? Find it HERE.

Other articles by billabongbob are HERE.


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    • thumbi7 profile image

      JR Krishna 

      6 years ago from India

      Very useful for people like us who do multiple tasks at a time. Rated up. Thank you.

    • kerlynb profile image


      6 years ago from Philippines, Southeast Asia, Earth ^_^

      "Time is valuable and getting the most from it leaves us with much happier lives." - Well said. We have to do what we can do today and not put them off for yesterday. Still, we have to set limits. We cannot overwhelm ourselves with too much work - we'll get burned out in no time! LOL :D

    • JamaGenee profile image

      Joanna McKenna 

      6 years ago from Central Oklahoma

      I also keep whatever book I'm reading, especially thick ones, next to the computer while waiting for one of the inevitable Windows Updates to download and install, in case it should need a "nudge". When defragging, however, I'll go off to do some tidying up, or even go shopping! ;D

    • billabongbob profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from South Wales, UK

      Thanks for the comments Eileen and Jama.

      We all need a break from being at the keyboard, using this time to get household chores done is ideal. Sitting for long periods of time is not good for anyone, so by being active AND getting housework done, it's' killing 2 birds with one stone', as they say lol.

      Waiting for webpages to load can be boring and frustrating, so doing the laundry or dishes while you're waiting saves you on 'down time'. It's the perfect answer :).

      Good luck to you both with your online work and running your households :)

    • JamaGenee profile image

      Joanna McKenna 

      6 years ago from Central Oklahoma

      My internet connection isn't the fastest, so while a graphics-heavy page is taking forever to load, I do the breakfast dishes or start (or take out) a load of laundry. ;D

    • Eileen Hughes profile image

      Eileen Hughes 

      6 years ago from Northam Western Australia

      Good thought out hub, we all need to be organized. Another thing to think about is by doing your housework in between working or writing on the computer you are limiting the time spent crouched over your keyboard.

      We all need to get away from the computer and do some kind of exercise to keep our bodies active.

      Think of your housework as burning calories you are also losing weight and keeping more healthy.

    • billabongbob profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from South Wales, UK

      Thank you Ingenira :).

      If I had to do it all at once, I'd give up way before I'd finished. I don't always get everything done this way, but by doing a few tasks here and there, it gets a lot of chores out of the way.

      I just had a telephone call, while I was speaking, I went into the kitchen and finished what I hadn't managed to do last time round. It took 10 minute, to do both things, it would of been 20 minutes if I had done them separately ;).

      Thanks for posting, I'm glad you like the idea.

    • Ingenira profile image


      6 years ago

      I like the idea of

      "Break down household chores and do them in micro bursts throughout the day"

      Inspiring hub !

    • billabongbob profile imageAUTHOR


      6 years ago from South Wales, UK

      I too have 4 kids ;) so I know what you're going through. Mine are pretty much grown up now, but they haven't always been that way. Yet I've usually managed to work., it isn't easy I know lol.

      Things DO get easier, especially when the little ones go to school full-time. However, you'll find that the few hours that you do have will fly by. Make the most of your time.

      If you would like to read the next article in this series and benefit from becoming a potential domestic goddess, then take a look at

      Here's to earning a decent wage. And let's hope that we both have an exceedingly good 'next 6 months' while we achieve that!! Good luck Ddraigcoch. Go Welsh Girls (I'm from South Wales UK) init lol!!!

    • Ddraigcoch profile image


      6 years ago from UK

      This hub hits a lot of the problems that I hit regularly, with 4 kids and trying to work long enough on line to earn a reasonable "wage", I never feel like I do much of anything.

      Since my daughter(5 tomorrow),started full time, things are getting better. So here is to a more productive 6 months.

      Fabulous writing.x


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