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The Urgency Workflow

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This post started because of one Snapchat!! We were away at the Connect Marriage Retreat and we had just shot a wedding the day before and since I blog weddings on the Tuesday morning after the wedding, I had A LOT of work to get down while we were traveling. We flew out on Sunday and as soon as we arrived at the conference center, we had other responsibilities and I knew that if I didn’t gradually get my work done, I would be staying up until 3am on Monday night trying to finish this blog post!!

After almost 8 years of blogging, I have found a trick to getting my posts done… and really, this trick applies to ANYTHING!! You see, Michael and I don’t have a lot of “office hours”. We’re on the move A LOT. I honestly think that I have worked on my laptop more in the car than I EVER have in my actual office. That’s just the way our life is. So, I have had to learn how to get A LOT of stuff done in a short amount of time. I’ve also had to learn that a 10-15 minute window of time should NEVER be wasted. When I have just a few minutes here and there…. I get work done. It’s these mini-work sessions that allowed me to be present at the Connect Retreat and NOT stay up until 3am working. Let me give you another example of what this looks like….

Later that same week, we went to Miami and met two other couples for a little trip. When we got there, they were walking back from the beach and we decided to take 45mins to go to our rooms and freshen up before dinner. Well, I didn’t need to shower or anything and so I used 45 mins of that time for work. Can I tell you what I got done in that 45 minutes?! …. It’s going to blow your mind!! In that one 45 min window, I did the following:

– Edited an engagement session
– Exported and starting uploading that session to Pass gallery
– Responded to 10 Urgent emails
– Pre-Blogged one day for the coming week

I know that sounds like a crazy amount of stuff to get done in such a short period of time but here’s what I realized….. I was working SO HARD and SO FAST because I knew that I didn’t have much time AND I knew that once we got on the cruise ship, my internet access and work time would disappear. So I had motivation, a small window of time and a vision of how amazing it would feel to just get those things DONE!! When our friends met back up for dinner that night, I told them how quickly I had conquerored those multiple tasks and my friend Jill said…. “You should blog about it… and call it… “The Urgency Workflow”! And so that’s exactly what I’m doing! So what is….

The Urgency Workflow?

It’s working AS FAST AS POSSIBLE in incredibly SMALL CHUNKS OF TIME! So often we think that we need to wait until we have a two hour car ride to take our laptop in the car. Other times we think that we can’t start tackling emails until we have official “desk time” for at least 30 minutes. What is really happening is that we’re procrastinating and using the excuse that we can only get stuff done if we have a certain amount of time and that’s just not true!!

When I prepare a wedding blog post, I divide my blog creation process into sections. Culling, Sorting into sub-folders, selecting blog favs, editing blog favs in each sub-folder in Lightroom, exporting, blog stomping, writing the copy, creating social media headlines, etc… etc… etc. It takes me 15-20 minutes to do some of these! It also takes me about 15 mins to select the images for the blog. It takes me another 5 minutes to export them and drag them into BlogStomp….. do you see where I’m going with this?? If you can BREAK DOWN your tasks and then choose one at a time to do quickly whenever you have a small window of time, you will actually be creating LARGER chunks of FREE TIME to enjoy later.

Keep the end goal in mind when you’re choosing the urgency workflow because you have to see the bigger picture. For example, when I took 15 minutes sitting in the airport before our flight boarded and then worked for 15-20 mins during the cab ride to our hotel… I was thinking about how awesome it was going to be to not have to do ANY work for 4 whole days! Those incremental work sessions were filled with urgency and that’s why I was able to get so much done! Now, I’m not telling you to work during EVERY WAKING MOMENT…. but I am encouraging you to not let those small chunks of time fall through the cracks!! They could actually be the missing piece of the productivity puzzle!! This is definitely one of my secrets to productivity and I’m so excited to see others start to crank out things just simply by working in limited, small chunks of time to increase urgency!!

xoxo, Katelyn
6 Comments Ask Anything, Education
  1. Sarah reply

    I’m glad you adding in “NOT EVERY WAKING MOMENT!” cause you started to sound like a working machine! ha ha! I know you don’t really work all the time and this is a great tip! Then you can enjoy yourself when it really matters:) Thanks as always Katelyn!

  2. maria stamy reply

    You are a true inspiration. And so kind to share your wisdom with us all is a very generous thing to do! Thank you.

  3. Steve Rubin reply

    This is a great blog post and certainly puts time management in a completely different perspective (as I sit on my swing outside reviewing my Feedly reader waiting for my wife to get off the phone before dinner :).

  4. Amanda Veronee reply

    I can see Jill’s expression when she said ‘the urgency workflow’ haha!! xo

  5. Megan Kelsey reply

    I’m convinced that this is what I am experiencing right now with trying to get stuff done before the wedding and our HONEYMOON!!! I’ve edited two weddings and a portrait session in 2 days! There is nothing more motivating!! hahaha!

  6. Tiffany McClure reply

    I WISH I could pick images for the blog in 15 minutes!! I have the hardest time only selecting a few!! You’re so inspiring Katelyn James!! <33

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