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Is it just me, or is applying makeup overwhelming at times? Working from home doesn’t mean I run around the house with a bare face, but it does mean there are many days where it doesn’t have to be applied first thing. However, I’ve noticed that I work much better with makeup applied and hair styled. Are you the same way?

So on those days (like today) when I’m exhausted or just overwhelmed by how crazy long my list is, I set a timer. Did you know you can apply serious makeup in about five minutes? That includes liquid eyeliner. Just don’t overdo it on the coffee beforehand.


I also use a timer when the kitchen has gotten out of hand and all I want to do after getting the Little Butt in bed is pour a glass of wine and put up my feet. Deep down I know that tomorrow will be better if the kitchen is clean and the coffee pot prepped, but it’s just so much work!

On goes the timer. This time I use the one on the stove because I can see what I’m competing against. Did you know that a seriously messy kitchen can usually be cleaned up in just seven minutes? I give myself ten because then I can work on one of those chores I usually put off—like washing the window over the sink.


Back when I was teaching piano full time and struggling with a difficult student (I no longer remember who that was), a parent named Mary Jo told me, “You can do anything for thirty minutes.” She was so right. I tell myself that when I turn on my workout DVD each morning.

The timer concept is not my own. I learned it from FlyLady. But I’m sure she learned it from someone before that. And now you can pass it on to someone else, after giving it a try and seeing what works for you.

If you can do anything for thirty minutes, ten or fifteen minutes are a breeze. I challenge you—go find a timer (you may even be holding it as you read). Give it a go and see what you think.

Set at Timer