How Do You Work Best?

posted by Andrea | 08/3/2012

Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been thinking a lot about WHERE I work best, WHEN I work best, and HOW I work best, partially because I’m weird and like to think about those things… but mainly because my time is limited these days and I need to know that I’m making the best use of my working hours.


I’ve been accustom to working from home for several years already, but things are really different when you throw a baby into the mix! I used to be able to sit at my desk {uninterrupted} for several hours at a time. Now, Dave and I often have to go upstairs or to our outbuilding in order to get those few uninterrupted moments of productivity.


Even though we’ve had many late nights… and the mornings tend to be a bit rough around our house, I would still say I’m still more of a morning person than a night owl. I prefer to do my focused work in the morning, and then easier tasks in the evening when my brain feels like mush.


This is the question that originally sparked my idea for this post — because it took me awhile to come with an answer. Most of the time, I work best at a fast pace with regular breaks…

For example…

  • When I’m ready to cook or bake, I’d rather make several meals or batches of baked goods at one time and only get the kitchen messy once.

However, there many activities where “slow and steady” is the best way for me {especially now that Nora’s around}.

For example…

  • I absolutely hate doing loads and loads of laundry all at one time. Even if it seems “less efficient”, I’d much rather do one or two loads at a time, a couple times a week. It seems less overwhelming for me and it takes less time each day. Plus, since I’m usually home every day, it’s no trouble for me to quickly throw one load in the washer at some point.
  • I also prefer to spread out other household chores throughout the week rather than doing them all on one day (which is what I used to do).


Sometimes I feel like working slow and steady keeps me from burning out. However, other times working quickly to cross items off my list allows me a lengthier period of downtime.

So for now, I’m not saying that one way is the best way. Both methods for getting things done seem to work for me… for now!

However, I’d love to know if you have a preference either way?

Do you find that “slow and steady” wins the race for you?

Or do you like to work quickly and have more free time?


photo credit: tortoise, hare


Filed under: WorkTime Management

Leave a comment


  1. Sandra


    yay Debbie.


  2. Sandra


    I think I prefer slow and steady – spreading “chores” and activities over the week(s).
    I think about these tasks as good variety.


  3. Nicole


    I like free time, so most of the time I complete my tasks quickly. However, I’m like you–I don’t do my laundry at one time, but instead spread it out over the week. I’m a morning person so most of the tasks that require the most focus and concentration are done by the afternoon. After recently completing my Bachelor’s and then a Master’s (in 3 years!) with 4 kids (and 3 pets) while simultaneously running a home-based business and also being a competitive runner, I’ve learned that some things I have to let go. My standards of perfection regarding housework have gone down as I have learned to tolerate the messiness of having a full house with kids, pets, the logistics of school and work, and well, life! And I wouldn’t trade that for anything! Now that my schooling is done, I can get back to a better balance of work and life — and my surroundings reflect that. Am I a fast or slow worker? For the most part, fast.


  4. Lynette


    Even we with ADHD have the same tendencies… or slow depends on what we are doing. I also HATE folding clothes, so I do laundry one load at a time spread over days. It’s just with me, I hate it so much that the unfolded clean pile sits in my chair in the bedroom for a few days until I get sick of seeing it! I HATE housecleaning, so it gets done one piece at a time.

    I love writing and reading, and am a morning person. I do the chores in the morning when the energy is best so that they get done. If I waited until the afternoon, I’d forget it is afternoon because I’d be hyper focused on the writing/reading and the house would be a mess, nobody would get fed, and we’d all be naked or wearing really dirty clothes!


  5. Alana @ Domestic Bliss Diaries


    I’m like you in that I do it both ways… Jus depends on what it is. I generally work slow and steady, but I’m thinking about testing out that do-all-laundry-in-one-day plan because I hate folding clothes. I figure folding them all at once will keep me from having to do it all week. I also want to set aside a day (or two mornings) a week to knock out blog work. I have to clean a little bit at a time because I don’t like doing it. (Seeing a theme? I don’t like housework…). My problem is figuring out how I work best, coupled with my family’s needs, and creating a schedule.




    I’m more of a slow and steady person. And I’m not a morning or a night person – I’m a day person! I get started about 10 and work until lunch. I stop to eat lunch and then I’m back at it until 3:00 when I drink a coke and read for about half an hour. Then I’m back at it until dinner time at 6:00. After dinner I play by ear depending on what’s going on with my family.

    I do 3 loads of laundry on Monday, on Wednesday and on Friday. I do basic cleaning on Monday morning and then special projects a little at a time through the week. I like to do a little of everything every day.

    By 8:30, I’m ready for couch time with my husband. We usually sit on the couch and watch tv and I quilt a little and then plan the next day. Bed by 10:30.

    Boring but it works.


  7. Debbie


    I am like you. I work at both paces. It depends on the task and how much I like doing it.
    I also move at different speeds based on my old fashion calender! I like the fact that taking care of our house and family brings me simple joy. I think thats how God intended it to be. My outside job not so much. lol Miss you when you were off, but good for you and your family to have that time. Smart and important. Thank you again for keeping us girls motivated.


  8. Stephanie


    I’ve been thinking a lot about this, as I’m not as disciplined as I would like to be with time management. Although I’ve always been a night owl by nature, mornings could be my most productive time (husband at work, 4 kids in bed). It’s just making myself get up and be that person! My mind works fine once I’m up and at ’em. And I’ve found that grocery shopping (one of my least favorite tasks) is actually a lot more fun in the morning when my body feels rested and the stores are slow. So…I’m going to be putting some things on paper and hopefully a new routine will be in the works.
    Glad to have you back. You deserved the break!