Finding the Time to Bead: 5 Tips for Time Management

With a preschooler, a full-time job, a husband, a dog and a gaggle of chickens, there's always something for me to do at my house. And sometimes, sadly, the beading is the LAST thing to get done at the end of the day. But beading is important to me. I'd say it's probably just as important as cooking or cleaning or spending time with my family because beading is my creative escape, and it relaxes me at the end of a long day.

After reading this blog post by Quilting Daily's Pokey Bolton about a mother of five (yes, that's right-FIVE kids!) who realized how important it was to make time to make art every day, I realized that I am also happier when I can find the time to do a little bit of beading every day. Beading has been such a huge part of my life for so long that I find myself getting grumpy and irritable when I go for days without picking up a needle and beads.

Even if you don't have hours to sit down and bead (most days, I'm lucky to squeeze in twenty minutes!), there are things you can do to make the most of your beading time:

Break your beading projects down into manageable steps to get the most out of your beading time.

1. Break up big projects into manageable steps. Don't feel like you have to complete an entire project in a single weekend. You have a life, right? So break your projects down into smaller steps. Set realistic goals for yourself. If you want to make an entire string of beaded beads, don't convince yourself that you have to do it all in one day. Let yourself enjoy the actual practice of beading instead of worrying so much about finishing the whole project.

2. Set your alarm clock a half hour early. This one is easier said than done for some of us. I am not-and never will be-a morning person. But some days I can get myself out of bed before the alarm goes off and sit quietly at my worktable or on my back porch with my tray of beads and enjoy the silence and stillness of the house while I bead. And if I only get fifteen minutes of peace and quiet and beads? I enjoy it. (See Number One, above!)

Another time-saving tip: don't let your beading table look like this! Put things back as soon as you are done with them so that you know where you can find them quickly when you need them later.

3. Stay organized. Again, easier said than done for some of us, but it makes total sense. I find that I waste more time looking for beads and findings and tools that I need when I don't take the time to put things away where they belong when I'm finished with them! Of course, sometimes being messy and cluttered is part of my creative process. But if that applies to you, too, make sure that you take a few minutes every week or so to clean up and put away your beads and beading tools. It will save you a lot of time in the long run that you can then spend beading!

4. Bead with a buddy. This is one that I like to do, especially because most of my beading friends don't live nearby. I schedule a time with a friend (or two or three) when we can all get together and spend an afternoon or an evening with each other and our beads. You make appointments to get your hair cut, your nails done, your tires rotated, and your oil changed. Make an appointment to do some beading, too! (And don't write it in pencil, write it in INK!)

5. Be creative with your time. Are you sitting in your car for twenty minutes waiting for your kids to get out of school? Bring your beads. Have a long commute to work on the train every morning? Bring your beads. Plopping down in front of the television after dinner? Get out your beads! You'd be surprised how much time you can find in your day to squeeze in a little beading!

Do you have a time management secret for finding time to bead? Share it with us here on the blog! Or better yet, head on over to the Beading Daily Forums and let's talk about it!

Bead Happy,


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