Do you ever feel like you just don’t have enough time in your day to get everything done? Are the tasks piling up, leaving you overwhelmed and frustrated? Do you think  it’s possible to get anything accomplished in 5 minutes?

A while back I sent out a survey asking singers what their biggest challenges and difficulties were with regards to their singing and musical endeavors. The responses I received were largely what I expected: difficulties with vocal technique (breath support, range, projection, etc); difficulty with or uncertainty about how to get more gigs or better paying gigs; challenges with vocal health and the like.

What I DIDN’T expect however, was how many of you cited TIME (or lack thereof) as your #1 challenge.

But of course! It makes total sense. As creative types, we’re always juggling a lot of hats and it’s often hard to find the time to do it all. Time for practicing, writing or learning new tunes, booking the gigs, managing your marketing and promo, social media, websites….. It’s a lot I know. Additionally, you might also be working another job to pay the bills while you get your musical career off the ground.

When you’re trying to follow your dreams, time can be a big challenge.

There’s a fantastic book titled, The Bodacious Book of Succulence, Daring to Live Your Succulent Wild Life by SARK (Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy). It’s a book about creativity, loving life and living your dreams and is fabulous for many reasons. The reason I bring it up here though, is that there’s a chapter titled “Micro-Movements”. In this chapter the author talks about breaking tasks down into what she calls micro-movements, those actions that can be done in 5-minutes or less. Brilliant, right!

Ok, I know what you may be thinking. “Jennifer, I can’t write a song in 5-minutes, or practice for 5 minutes at a time!”. Yes, that’s true, some tasks do take longer than 5 minutes. BUT you’d be amazed by what you CAN accomplish in 5 minutes. Maybe you can’t write a song in 5 minutes, but you CAN spend 5 minutes brainstorming song ideas. You might not be able to fit a meaningful vocal practice into 5 minutes but you CAN take 5 minutes to sit down with your calendar and mark out the times that week that you WILL do your vocal practice. You might not be able to get the gig booked in 5 minutes, but you CAN draft the e-mail to the booking agent. The idea is not that you’ll necessarily complete the task in 5 minutes, rather that in 5 minutes you’ll complete some part of it, bringing you, micro-movement by micro-movement, closer to it’s completion.

Break larger tasks into 5-minute micro-movements.

The other day I had 5 minutes between students. Not enough time to do much right? I guess I could have surfed Facebook, but instead I decided to send a quick follow-up e-mail to a client who was interested in hiring my band for a large gala event. The result of this brief action? A  gig and a nice deposit check 🙂

What can you accomplish in 5 minutes? I’d love to hear your ideas!