Book Review: The Skinny On Time Management



I was sent a book called The Skinny On Time Management and Other Life Challenges by Jim Randel to review and I have to say, it wasn't at all what I expected!

When I opened the book, it was full of cartoons! Kind of like a cartoon strip in a newspaper but it got across its pointers in a bite sized way. I suppose in our fast moving world, the writer recognised that people want fast information and this was definitely preferable to reams of text.

The press release that came with the book said that The Skinny On™ books are inspired by the Japanese manga literary phenomenon and represent a paradigm shift in how individuals are learning. It’s no secret that generation Y learners want their information quicker and faster than ever before. Today’s young people are staccato learners and do not have the patience to thumb through a 200 page, text driven book stuffed with filler.

Yup! Just what I said!
The book covers clutter, utilising down time, matching time and energy, time journals, focus and batching tasks - and everything is communicated in a friendly, non intimidating and easy to understand style.

I practise many of the techniques within the book but it's always great to remind yourself of different ways from time to time so this book is staying on my book-case for a refresh each year!

The book costs £8.93 from Amazon.

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
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10 Things to Do if You Get an Hour's 'Me Time'

I had a dream last night that I was on a sandy beach with a book, an iPod, peace and quiet and an attentive waiter bringing me endless cocktails and Diet Cokes! ...then I woke up! But it made me think about what I might do if I had an hour's 'Me Time' in my normal life.

So here's my Top Ten:
1. Go swimming at the gym. I LOVE doing lengths and having quiet time to just think!
2. I adore a lie in on a Sunday Morning when I can get one. I like the papers in bed and a pain au chocolate and a cup of tea!
3. Watching Desperate Housewives, Drop Dead Diva or Cougar Town which I've recorded on my Sky +
4. SHOPPING! Who doesn't love a browse round the shops 'sans enfants' so I can take as long as I want trying on and no-one nattering to go to the Early Leaning Centre!
5. Getting my friend round for a coffee and a chat
6. Pounding the pavement on a run. Just me, my iPod and the road.
7. A long, hot bubble bath with a face-pack
8. The classic - curling up with a good book
9. I haven't done this yet but I want to try out Guitar Hero
10. My favourite of all of these is cuddling up on the sofa with my kids - one under each arm and watching a Disney movie with a bowl of microwave popcorn!

What would YOUR 'Me Time' consist of?

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
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We Made the Tots 100!

Guys - I'm happy to say that you and I (readers and blog) have some celebrating to do because Juggle Mum made the Tots 100!



The Tots 100 is a round up of the 100 best parent blogs in the UK. It is collated on a monthly basis and all blogs are scored and ranked.

Time Management Mum is No 94! A new entry!

Thanks for reading and commenting on this blog and helping it get there!

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
Like my content? I'd be honoured if you added me to your blogroll and followed this blog - your support really does make a difference. x

Your Best Time Management Tip

As 'time management' is a theme I love (can't you tell?!) I want to remind you about a competition I'm running for your best tip!

It can be about running a home with several kids, how to stay sane whilst juggling work and the rest of your life or how to get some 'me time' by shaving time off chores elsewhere!

Read my post on it here.

The competition is open all of April 2010 so leave your comment with your tip to be in with a chance to win! *NOTE: This contest is now closed*

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
Like my content? I'd be honoured if you added me to your blogroll and followed this blog - your support really does make a difference. x

Tips for Companies Who Market to Mums

Are your ideal customers mothers? If so, let me make life REALLY easy for you and tell you what we want!

I'm a busy mum of two. I want things to do the job they are meant to do - easily.

I took my son to McDonalds recently. With his Happy Meal he could choose an Innocent smoothie carton or a Fruit Shoot juice. He usually takes the Fruit Shoot but that day he wanted a smoothie. Trendy packaging I suppose, but it took me a full minute to get the straw from its wrapper and prick it into the silly little hole at the top - and some drink spilled out down my hand as I did it. All the while I'm listening to a grumpy 2 year old cry for his drink and juggling shopping bags and trying to dodge the crowd.
I wish I'd got him the Fruit Shoot. Easy to use packaging: lid off, spout up, hand to kid - 3 seconds tops. (and no spills)

Good design is my best friend. I will pay more for it.
I recently bought a YSL Rouge Volupte lipstick I'd seen at my nearest counter which was a gorgeous colour and I couldn't find a colour that I liked as much in any of the cheaper ranges. How delighted was I the first time I went to apply my lippie to see there was a mirror at the top of the lipstick lid! Little touches like this make my life easier. I'm now a YSL lipstick convert.

Give me practical technology.
Make me a mobile phone that can take 2 SIM cards (one for business, one for personal) that has a clip designed into the body of the phone so I can fasten it to the inside of my bag so I don't have to rummage and miss a call or risk breast cancer by storing the phone in my bra for easy access.

Don't slow me down.
Would any car manufacturer out there design me a quick release door so when I click my keys to unlock it also releases the drivers door allowing me to dump my bags on the seat when I have my arms full of kids, shopping bags, school bags and drinks. I'd only need to prise the door open with my foot to dump the bags!

Think of your profits.
Supermarkets - design me a trolley that will allow me to shop whilst pushing a sleeping child in a buggy. If he's awake he will sit in a trolley. If he's asleep I can only buy as much as I can fit into the hood of my pushchair (not much) because carrying a basket is too heavy and hurts my arm when I'm trying to steer a pram and hold a basket. Most prams, like trolleys, need 2 hands to navigate. Trust me, I could buy so much more.

Think of the Men and Kids when you Design Products for Me.
Make Up Companies. PLEASE can you design a nail polish that distributes colour onto my nail but if the brush passes over skin the colour turns to water and it doesn't stain? Kind of like a kids magic painting set when all you have to do is dip the brush in water and it magically 'paints' a rainbow of colours onto the page.
I just want it the other way round. Colour on toenail that turns to water on skin. When I was heavily pregnant I liked my hubby to paint my toenails as I couldn't and I still wanted to look nice. But he couldn't keep within the lines. Now my 7YO daughter wants her nails painting but she has ants in her pants and squirms when I do it - hence polish everywhere. If we can send humans to the moon and have the imagination to create films like Avatar and can have mobile phones the size of a credit card that are also cameras, laptops, MP3 players, games consoles, calculators, diaries and phones - can't we have a nail polish that doesn't paint on skin?!

Companies, please! If you market products to busy women, make sure you have plenty of women like that in your R&D and marketing teams, so we get what we want! If you don't, then come see busy mums like me for consultancy!

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
Like my content? I'd be honoured if you added me to your blogroll and followed this blog - your support really does make a difference. x

Third Door Competition - great for Juggling Business and Kids!

Being a business owning mum and working from home, I know all about the school holiday juggle that is trying to run a business with kids! This is why I was excited to hear about a new business that launches next month, aimed at helping us mumpreneurs!

Third Door is a new concept launching in May in Wandsworth, London. It will offer flexible workspace with on-site childcare that you pay for on a pay-as-you-go basis, giving a lot more flexibility than normal childcare. Basically you book yourself a desk/meeting room, you book your child a place in the crèche, for the hours/days you need, and that’s it - the chance to work and still spend time with your child. For parents who run their own businesses, freelancers or those who are able to work remotely some of the time, it gives them a chance to combine work and spending time with their children.

Home Office Mum has also blogged about this here.

To help spread the word about it, Third Door are running a fab competition in which someone can win a prize worth £4000 to help them set up their own business or get better work life balance. It includes:

•Free Third Door membership
•30 hours of free workspace/childcare
•A business in a box package (including logo design, business cards and website)
•3 x 1 hour consultancy sessions – choose from marketing, legal, financial, PR, social media, technology, business management or life coaching advice
•A laptop
•A smartphone
**This contest is now closed**

To enter, just go to www.third-door.com and click the competition link. The competition is open till the end of April.

Third Door is only available in London for now but if it goes well they will look at expanding to other areas I'm told!

For anyone running a small business, there is another great service to help you manage the juggle that is working from home! A Virtual Receptionist service ensures that your phone is always professionally answered - whatever you happen to be doing! And when you work from home you will know what it feels like to get the dread when you are on a call and the kids start screaming!! You can avoid that with a Virtual Receptionist!

This kind of service is essential for small businesses and you can get a free trial of one month at www.DontLoseBusiness.co.uk

The telephone answering service is my business but the Third Door isn't! I'm just blogging about it as it is a great resource for business owning parents!

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
Like my content? I'd be honoured if you added me to your blogroll and followed this blog - your support really does make a difference. x

This Made Me Laugh This Week!



...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
Like my content? I'd be honoured if you added me to your blogroll and followed this blog - your support really does make a difference. x

What Inspires Me...

Being a WAHM with 2 kids, 2 cats, 1 husband, a business serving 100+ clients and a very busy schedule, I’m not short on inspiration! My kids provide a daily source of inspiration (and frustration too sometimes, but that’s another blog post!) and just seeing them have fun and laugh, cuddle each other or come and give me a big wet kiss all make me stop and say and internal ‘thank you’ to God for having them in my life. But I also take inspiration from other sources.

A sunny day can be all it takes to put me in a creative mood, or looking around at a clean, comfortable room in my home makes me feel happy and safe. Getting a ‘thank you’ message from a client when they are pleased with my work or getting a royalties statement from my Publisher who tell me that I’ve sold more copies of my book, all give me a glow and inspire me to do even more – even better. I challenge myself daily to outreach further, do more marketing, make more connections whilst nurturing the connections and friendships I already have, and I am very mindful of ‘the ordinary things’ and ‘the little things’ because to me they are not ordinary or small – they are what I get out of bed each day for.

I wasn’t born with an ‘attitude of gratitude’ but I’ve developed it over the years to a place where now it is just ‘the way I am’, and having this attitude provides all the inspiration I need to achieve the goals I set myself. I believe that anyone can do anything that they set their minds to. It won’t necessarily be easy but we all have the capabilities to improve ourselves, our work and our lives and if what you want to do has never been done before by another human being, then there is always a first. If it has been done before then you already have an action plan to follow!

As women we tend to put others first and our needs last – especially when we become mothers. So to take inspiration from your life and move forward, all you need to do is look at what you have already done. Look at your beautiful children – you have already created a masterpiece, and now you know this, you can do anything.

This post was first published at The Mumpreneur Guide - a Blog by Antonia Chitty. It was written by Nadine Hill (AKA Juggle Mum) for the Mumpreneur Guide in March 2010.

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
Like my content? I'd be honoured if you added me to your blogroll and followed this blog - your support really does make a difference. x

Time Management Tips for Women Who Juggle plus Competition!

Here are some of Juggle Mum's regularly used tips- all tried and tested by me!

Tip #1: LIVE FOR TODAY - PLAN FOR THE WEEK!
Each weekend, go through your diary for the week to come. Notice where you have a big meeting to prepare for or which day is your child's 'Show & Tell' at school, so these things don't catch you by surprise the night before.

Tip #2: WHEN YOU DRESS FOR BED - DRESS FOR TOMORROW!
Choose the next day's outfit at bedtime to avoid those "What shall I wear?" lost minutes in the morning.

Tip #3: EVERY SECOND COUNTS!
Eliminate 'dead' time by keeping your iPod topped up with an audio book, podcast or TV show so you always have something to listen to whilst waiting for the train / in a doctors surgery etc. I always have something for me plus at least 1 ep of Hannah Montana and 1 ep of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse so I can pacify whichever child is with me at the time!

Tip #4: MAKE THEIR BIRTHDAY HAPPY FOR YOU!
As your friend & family celebrate their birthdays, anniversaries and babies born this year, note the dates they occur on a computer spreadsheet. This 'Master List' will ensure you never miss an occasion again. You simply check the list at the start of each month to get the relevant cards for the dates in that month.

When people are bogged down in the 'everyday' it's hard to find the time and energy to dream and plan. These tips should help make the 'everyday' run more smoothly!

What is YOUR best time management tip for busy mums? Comment below and the best one chosen by me wins a £20 High Street Gift Voucher - You can choose from Sainsbury’s, Asda, Debenhams, New Look, Marks and Spencer, Argos, Next, Boots, WH Smith, H-Samuel, Oasis and HMV.

**NOTE: This contest is now closed**

This competition runs all month until Friday 30th April so you have time to think of something! You can enter more than once but each entry must contain a new tip. Good luck!

****This competition has been sponsored by Euroffice who are the UK’s No.1 online office supplies company.****

...... Being organised saves time, money, boosts your productivity and helps you enjoy the 'little stuff' of life.
Like my content? I'd be honoured if you added me to your blogroll and followed this blog - your support really does make a difference. x