# accomplishing tasks # Efficient home

How To Be Efficient | My Best Tips | Jennifer L. Scott

In my recent Self-Publishing Success Story, I mention that I am a very efficient person. If you are going to write books and raise a family, you need to be! :) This is an area that I have a lot of experience in and in today's video, I share my best efficiency tips with you.

To get an expanded discussion on each of the tips, please watch today's video. I have summarized them for you here.

Tip #1- Wake up well before your family. I usually wake up at 5:30am, a few hours before my children wake up. This quiet morning time is perfect for getting tasks done. I have the energy and motivation and it sets me up for the day. I feel prepared.

Tip #2- Cut out television. No seriously. A recent New York Times article stated that the average American adult watches 5 hours and 4 minutes of television a day. While you probably don't watch that much TV, imagine the hours you could recoup if you cut out television watching entirely.

Tip #3- Cut down on social media. For many of us, using Facebook can be a guilty pleasure. But track how much time you spend on your social media sites. This digital hobby could be taking up valuable hours and minutes in your day.

Tip #4- Make goals for yourself. If you are entering into a new season, make goals for yourself and take action to accomplish them. For example, during our summer break, I made the goal of organizing the pantry, establishing a filing system and clearing/ de-cluttering the homeschool room. I'm nearly finished with all three of those goals and it feels good!

Tip #5- Embrace schedules and routines. Utilizing routines doesn't mean you have a boring life, it just means your work is regularly getting done, which frees up time to enjoy other things. I have a cleaning schedule, a cooking schedule, and a working schedule among other regular weekly routines.

Tip #6- Use a planner. I put important appointments along with directions and alerts in my phone, but for everything else, I like to use a written planner. This helps me visualize my week and it honestly keeps me more prepared than when I only used the calendar feature on my phone. I use the The Happy Planner . Here is a link to all Happy Planner products on Amazon

Tip #7- Meal plan. In addition to planning our weekly meals, I really enjoy freezer cooking. Freezer cooking has helped us so much! It's wonderful knowing that a healthy, homemade meal is always available on the days where I am too busy to cook, or simply don't feel like cooking. It helps me be efficient without compromising our family mealtimes together.

These tips really only scratch the surface. If one of these topics interests you and you'd like to know more about it, please let me know in the comment section and I would be happy to expand the discussion in future video.

There will be four videos this week on The Daily Connoisseur! Tomorrow, I'm sharing my favorite scents for the Mrs. Meyer's line, Thursday's video is an interview with Nikki Moreno of Inspired by Nikki, and Friday's Natural Home with Jennifer is sharing a laundry detergent review. I hope you'll join me!


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Comment of the Week
On last week's Homeschooling Update, Rachel writes, "I’m so glad you all had a great year! I am currently homeschooling my 3 older children (rising 1rst, 4th, and 6th grades) with a delightfully active 3 year old in tow. This is our 5th year, and we all enjoy it. I’m thrilled that I get the opportunity to spend so much time with my children while they are young. Our days are (usually) joyful and satisfying, and my children are thriving socially, academically, creatively, physically, spiritually, really all the ways I can think of. I love your books and your blog! I think of your work sometimes when I’m tempted to be sloppy, lazy, grumpy, and living in my pajamas. Getting dressed everyday makes a huge difference in my attitude and productivity! Thanks for the inspiration you give me to keep classy. Much love!"

Hi Rachel, your comment was very encouraging! I loved to read about your positive experience with homeschooling. I'm thrilled that it works so well for your family. Fantastic!

Thank you for watching today's video. I would love to hear from you. Do you struggle with efficiency? Do you have any efficiency tips to share with us? Have you noticed an area in your life that you could adjust in order to be more efficient? Let us know and your comment could be chosen as comment of the week on The Daily Connoisseur.

I'll see you tomorrow for a special bonus, Natural Home with Jennifer, video.

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Live Chic and Well said...

Thank you for these tips, Jennifer. you sound super efficient and I am definitely going to follow a couple of them myself. In particular I intend to try getting up earlier in the mornings before my threee children wake, to work on my own book. I also love the idea of setting a few projects for the summer.
Sarah at www.livechicandwell.com

Anonymous said...

Brilliant tips. Thank you so much. How about when you have your newborn baby? How will you incorporate efficiency? Will you just go with the flow? I am very interested to know since j will be having one soon :) Thank you

Suzie said...

Very inspiring video and tips! Would you be willing to share your daily schedule? I am such an optimist and always think that it will only take me five minutes to leave the house with the kids or prepare a meal or put them to bed. Then I end up being late and frustrated or feeling like I get nothing of substance accomplished in a day! Thank you for doing the work that you do.

Ladylike said...

Hello Jennifer,

Great video! I agree with you completely about cutting out TV since it is a time waster. Cutting it is much easier if you resist the temptation by cutting out cable. The statistic you quoted is horrifying! It must be true because I know people who are so familiar with TV personalities. They could only have this familiarity if they spent hours watching it. They are wasting their lives watching TV instead of actually living. It is sad... Eliminating TV is also much better for children. They will read more and find other activities to do.

About schedules, I would like to know more about your cleaning schedule. Right now, I am trying out a slightly modified version of the FlyLady's schedule. I like the idea of focusing on a different "zone" of my home each week.

Thank you for the planner recommendation. I love the design on your planner, and I just ordered it! Speaking of planners, here is a quotation printed in my current planner that reminds me of you~ "The secret of your future is hidden in your daily routine." This is apparently a quote from Mike Murdock who, it seems, is a pastor. I am not familiar with him since I don't watch TV! Speaking of reading instead of watching the tube, I just finished rereading "Miss Mapp." Once again, it was so enjoyable!

I don't know exactly where you live, but I have an idea, and I hope you are all safe from the fires in S. California.
Warm best~

Ladylike said...

P.S. Since you mention your personality, I will again add that I believe your energy type to be type 4 in the Live Your Truth system... There is a proud tradition of type 4 presidents in the history of our country, including George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Thomas Jefferson. You are in very good company~!


Anonymous said...

Your blog/channel is so encouraging to me to create a beautiful and diligent life! As a fellow homeschooler, I would love to learn more about how you schedule your school day. Also, when you have an interruption in your schedule such as a doctor appt. how do you get back on track?

SMT said...

I loved this video on efficiency! You have a wonderful way of inspiring us to do & be better...thank you for sharing! 💗

Wendy C. said...

You are a true inspiration Jennifer! One other strategy I have found to be very helpful in getting things done is having an accountability group with some girlfriends. We call ourselves the "Goal Diggers" and we meet once a month to share the 1-3 goals each of us set for ourselves. We have a weekly check in by text where we report our progress and cheer each other on. We have all found this immensely helpful as sometime life presses in and things we would like to accomplish get pushed to the side. A little outer accountability can go a long way in keeping things moving forward!

Unknown said...

Loved this video! I'd love to see more videos about your routines and how you plan :)

Mimi Gregor said...

Yay! It turns out that I do all of these things, and I do find that it is actually freeing to have such a rigid schedule. It means that I get my work done, and have time left to do what I want to do (which is read. The TV has no cable hookup, so we only use it for Netflix on "movie nights".)

While I plan meals, I also make out my grocery list, in the order these things appear in the supermarket. There is no going into aisles that I don't need to, and no doubling back this way. Also, while I'm out grocery shopping, I run all the other errands that I need to. I plan a route so that I waste less gas and time, as there is no doubling back. No matter what it is, planning ahead takes time, but it saves so much more time in the long run.

Also, having no clutter is a real time-saver when it comes to cleaning day.

Maureen said...

Another advantage to not watching television or engaging in social media is that you'll go to bed earlier, that way you'll be able to wake up early the next day and do it all over again. :)

This was great, Jennifer! Thank you. You inspired me to wake up even earlier today to accomplish more things before my family awoke.

By the way, I read this piece in the Wall Street Journal this morning and thought of you: Once and for All: Are Leggings Pants


ICU aus B said...

Thank you for this lovely video. I would like to know more about your cleaning routine and the whole planning process: how many appointments per day, grocery shopping on one day or several days etc. While I'm quite efficient and organized myself I always love to get more tipps. Thank you and I am looking forward to all of your videos this week. Inga

The Daily Connoisseur said...

Ladies, thank you for your comments. I'm so happy that this video was an encouragement and I have enjoyed reading about how you are efficient. Thank you for the requests for me to go into further detail about my routines. I will do future videos on this subject. Thank you, again, and here's to efficiency! :)

Anon- to answer your question, when we have the new baby, I will just go with the flow. Efficiency will go out the window for awhile. But having said that, I will do a lot to prepare for that downtime with freezer meals, etc.

Thank you for watching! I'll see you all on Thursday for my interview with Nikki Moreno.

Love, Jennifer

Unknown said...

I like your idea of making personal /professional goals.

Carrie Willard said...

Fantastic! My life is similar to yours in that I'm a homeschool mom, have 7 kids at home, and run a business. So all of these tips are the same things I recommend. Also, for me daily exercise helps me be efficient. My biggest struggle is low energy! So moving my body each day, although it takes time, gives me big energy gains.

Schedules and routines and systems are so freeing! A little discipline makes life better.

Vicki Zimmerman said...

I have been waiting for this video, and hopefully there will be more on your structured and efficient way of life. I learned a lot and have some great takeaways and I also have more questions, too. Your pantry organizing video was spectacular, and I'd love for you to do one on your new filling cabinets and "establishing a filing system" as you said it was one of your goals and not one of your favorites. Please talk about your filing system in a future video as this is a roadblock for me and although people ask us if our house "is always this neat," I know I can do better in this area with "paper." I'd also love to see your cleaning routine(s), too.

I like your various structured routines on cleaning, cooking and writing to be productive through your efficiency and it truly shows in your life. Ah, to be the ant and not the sluggard! We learn from all creatures great and small.

One question I have is how do you manage your YouTube watching so it doesn't get longer than you wish? It can be much like television, if we let it. How many hours a day do you spend on your favorite YouTube channels and what are some you recommend? Do you get your news online and from what sources or do you read a newspaper? We read the "Los Angeles Times" print edition and at nighttime will watch a 30-minute news program and then "Jeopardy" which we find both entertaining and enjoyable. After that, I will usually read or as I'm doing now, catching up on your YouTube channel, because yours is my favorite. The choice you and your husband made to not be zombies and put more enriching material into your lives is really powerful and motivating to me to make that choice with my time. That's a great decision. Another takeaway is that you and your husband talk a lot and hold conversations together. I don't have that in my life and it seems really lovely.

As for planners, I've always used a monthly planner, which is my layout preference, because I love to look at the entire month. I buy one from Gallery Leather which I like very much, because I order it in navy leather and I like the ribbon to mark my pages. I also type up a weekly "Daily Notes" on one page, so I can see my to-do list of assorted running items. You were born efficient and I'm grateful you're sharing these fabulous tips! Thank you, Jennifer.

Maia Valentina Strinden said...

Hi Jennifer,

It would be wonderful if you could go into detail about your cleaning and cooking routine. Scheduling is something I struggle with, especially with 3 children!

Thank you so much for your work and inspiration!!

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Natalie M said...

I really like this topic and would love if you could expand on all of your points. I have been a reader of yours for years and have gleaned so much from your advice. I have two kids (4.5 &2.5) whom I stayed home with up until last fall. Going back to work and running a home really threw me! Any tips on motivation, organization and efficiency are greatly appreciated!
I love your content and your joyful attitude!