People always ask how I get things done. "Five minutes here, five there" has be come my quick, truthful-yet-sarcastic answer. It got me thinking the other day. What can we accomplish in five minutes?

No- that's not right. 

Here's a better question: What can we start in five minutes, biting off little pieces until something is finished? 

You need two things to do this. 

A timer, and an activity.

That's it. Here are some things I do


  • Doodles, it helps to have everything ready, notebook open, implements ready (currently on my desk, watercolors)
  • Stitches in art or to repair clothes
  • Sit still and breathe/meditate
  • Iron out fabric you remembered to pre-wash before cutting into (see also- prewash your fabric)
  • Trace a pattern (or just a few pieces of one)
  • Rinse cherries/seasonal fruit and enjoy slowly (this will take more than 5, depending on size of bowl/deliciousness of fruit)
  • Mix flour, water, starter so you can bake later
  • Dance
  • Fill/empty the dishwasher
  • Sweep the kitchen floor
  • Brain dump writing into notebook
  • Small exercise (Plank holds, movement, etc)

The beauty of a timer is that it takes the pressure off worrying about time.

One minute can feel like five, five like thirty, thirty like hours. There is only one rule: Do NOT check the timer. Just work up to the chimes, don’t stop unless it feels good to you. Trust the timer, it’ll go off, and yes, you can keep working. Or stop, and move on to other things.

Trust your choice.