Hi friends! My name is Aimée Farmer and I am a part of the team at The Life Church in Memphis, Tennessee. One of the things I do at our church is serving in our creative department by helping with project timelines/management. I’m blessed to serve with a great group of people who love what they do, love our church and are passionate about making things the best that we can!
I’m a pretty practical person so this blog isn’t very inspiring, just practical. I wanted to quickly share some things I do to help manage my time:
1. Have a List
- – The most important reason to have a list is so that I can quickly refocus on what I need to be working on when there is an interruption.
I use the “Reminders” app on my iPhone for a few lists that I always want right there:
- Home projects – I can jot anything down, refer to it when I’m out shopping, and review it on my day off to plan out bigger items.
- My Pastors – I have a separate list for both Pastor John and Leslie. When they ask if there is anything I need to go over with them, I can always be ready and not waste their time.
I also use an online program/app for all of my work projects, Asana. It is an incredible tool that allows me to assign projects to myself/others. Some features I really like are the ability to view at assignments by project, by person, or by deadline and the ability to prioritize tasks for myself. It’s very fast and user-friendly…and FREE!
2. Start Big
- – At the start of the day, ask yourself,
What is the most important thing I need to work on today?
- Do that first! If you’re a list person like me, sometimes you value quantity over quantity, getting a lot of things knocked off the list. However, when I do the most important thing first, it gets my best energy, thought, focus of the day. We often think that getting that email out of the way or doing a few little things will clear our day for the big stuff, but it’s much easier to focus first and then check off the little stuff.
3. Set Priority Filters
- – There are very few people that you need to respond to
- . It’s hard to wait in our text, email, instant culture, but when you are in your focus time on your big project first thing in the day, really try to only respond to things that are truly urgent from the priority people in your world. I use the “VIP” setting on my Mac/iPhone for texts/emails. It gives me a special alert that I know means it is from my Lead or Executive Pastors. That way, if I am deep in thought, I know without looking or disengaging if I need to look at it right now or if I can wait.
I know it’s super-nerdy, but I hope this helps you become more focused, productive and able to think-big in whatever role you have in life or church!
Creative Project Manager
The Life Church, Memphis, Tennessee