Top Time-Savers for Your Art Business

The number one complaint I hear from artists is that they don’t have enough time.

Sometimes it’s not so much a complaint, but a fear—a fear that they’ll be overwhelmed if they have to add one more business or marketing task to their list of things to do.

We all have the same amount of time, but some of us have learned strategies to be more efficient. See if implementing one or more of these ideas can buy you some sanity.

Sandy Askey Adams, Serenity at the Beach. Pastel

Sandy Askey Adams, Serenity at the Beach. Pastel, 12 x 24 inches. ©The Artist

Chunk it. Schedule your errands together and do like-minded tasks at the same time. It’s often easier to write a number of blog posts in one sitting than it is to write one a day.

Post-date it. If you write blog posts ahead of time, post-date them to appear throughout the week or month. You can do the same with Twitter and Facebook status updates if you use a platform like TweetDeck, Seesmic, or HootSuite.

Guard it. Reserve your peak productivity time for making art, writing blog posts, and completing other tasks that demand creative energy.

Learn it. Getting comfortable with new technology can be overwhelming, but delaying the learning process can cost you the precious time that a new technology can save. Learn the ropes in order to save time in the long run.

Automate it. Never miss an important transaction by automating bill payments, employee wages, and more.

Hire it. If you’re so busy that you can’t finish projects, it’s time to get help. Look to your kids or college students to help you with mailings, update your database, and make labels for your exhibit. Think about a virtual assistant to respond to email requests, configure your blog, or update your website.

Ignore it (for now). Turn off all notifications on social media sites. Instead of being interrupted every time you get a direct message on Twitter or Facebook, develop a discipline to log in to those sites on a regular basis. (See “chunk it” above.)

Process it. Don’t check your email, process it. Answer it, delete it, or file it, but don’t leave it to be acted upon later. Do the same with your regular mail. If you have to look at something multiple times, you have to re-learn it each time.

Finish it. Follow your tasks through to completion. It’s easy to get distracted, but create a mantra that helps you avoid multi-tasking and distraction. Feel free to adopt the mantra I created for these situations: “I do one thing at a time to completion.”

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