Monthly Review

Happy first of the month/April Fools Day!

I love the start of a new month, its like a mini new year, a bit of a fresh start if you need one.

At the beginning of every month I review my goals, as advised in the Leonie Dawson workbook. And I set goals for the next month from my workbook. I sit down with my calendar and work out a budget for my money for the month. I make any appointments I need to for that month and I make time to be ready for any birthdays and parties that I have coming up with regards to presents and cards. I check that everything in my calendar is in line with what I have in my diary and work out my study planner for the month.

Sitting down at the beginning of every month to organise myself makes my time less stressful and more productive. It normally take a couple of hours maximum and is worth every second of that time. Give it a try and see how much smoother and more rewarding this month is for you.

For any more help and ideas contact me at imogenjhope@gmail.com

Peace & love,

Imogen x

Open university

So last week i started my first Open University module on the way to gaining my BA hons degree in English Literature and Creative writing. I am studying part time which equates to 16 hours a week. More on assessment weeks. Sometimes less. My days are already pretty full as you have probably gathered. So the time I spend studying will a lot of the time be at weekends and when necessary, in the evenings. I am the first person to point out when you could possibly be too busy. Have taken too much on or be over-doing things. I have kind of come to think of these extra hours i will be taking on as an equivalent to a part-time job (except i don’t get paid!) so i figure that i can find the hours to do it. Last week i found the time it went quite smoothly over the weekend but it was only a preparatory week. I will see how it goes this week and if i find i am struggling energy or time wise i will have to rethink. It is a big commitment for me as it will take 6 years altogether. I have very rarely stuck to anything for 6 years except for marriage and motherhood! So i had to feel really sure of what it was that i wanted to achieve, why and what i want the outcome to be, i am even more aware of this as i already have one failed degree under my belt. So heres to the next 6 years of gaining knowledge, and hopefully a degree!

Imogen x

Fitting it all in and creating Life Balance

So i have a lot of strings on my bow. And would like even more perhaps. It’s a busy life but I have to make sure that I also fit in self care and relaxation. In the past I have been known to let things get on top of me and suffered from stress and anxiety which ideally i would like to avoid returning!

So this past week I have been attempting to establish new routines as part of my goals for 2015. This started by my prioritising The different areas of my life that i need to dedicate time to. That brainstorm looked like this

IMG_4078Not the most colourful but this quick brainstorm has led me to a much more productive week already.

Monday I shut myself away and write 1 chapter of the novel I am writing. Any ideas i have had during the week are noted down or dreamt up ready to be written on Monday. This system seems to be working well so far. I have written 3 chapters and the in-between time gives me enough space to dream up what happens next.

Tuesday painting is quite straight forward. I sit down and let whatever is inside me that day come to the surface and out onto the paper. Sometimes it is something I don’t like. Sometimes i think I have produced something amazing and sometimes its just a little bit dark. Anyway the important thing is that I put the time aside to create something which is just so important to me.

Wednesday says educate. I try to use an hour or so on a Wednesday to read up on selling art, blogging, writing, scheduling and any other subjects which i feel i need to educate myself in. Then i have the rest of the days in the week to implement what i have learnt.

Thursday selling day. I pop as much as i can on etsy and try to manage my shop the best i can on this day. Maybe in the future i will also use this day to sell or display my art locally when i pluck up the courage!

Friday is blogging day. I will sit and write about whatever it is that is on my mind or has been during the week that i might have made a note of.

Weekend is spent ferrying the kiddies from parties to classes to freezing myself in the park! And if I’m lucky some special time with Mr.H.

Rain Again...(Introducing Violet and Jonah aka. Vi & J.)

You may have noticed I am also a student. I am starting a part time degree with The Open University for English Language and Creative Writing. I don’t start for another 2 weeks today and then i guess I’m  going to have to work out how to fit it in to my routine that i have already implemented. Who knows how i will fit in that 18 hours a week but, hey, we will cross that bridge when we come to it. I believe that if I’ve already set out routines for everything else it will be easier.

As i am also mother of 2 little sprouts i have to look after them before all these things AND clean and declutter and cook and play. So you see there is still a lot more to fit in here.  I will probably pop all that down in another post but i just want to give some ideas of how you can fit in ways to create, produce and even sell even if your family or working life is full and chaotic.

Thanks for reading lovelies!!

Imogen x