Grandma-Style Productivity


BONUS FREEBIE: Want even more ways to stay organized, productive and less stressed? Click here to get access to my List-Making Starter Kit. It will boost your efficiency and get you back to doing more of the things you love.


I LOVE the TV show The Golden Girls. I love it so much it’s become a part of my morning rituals because it puts me in such a good mood.

I even got to meet Betty White once!

She was promoting The Proposal and I was working as a producer at Fox News. When my co-workers and I heard she’d be in the building, we stalked her in the green room. One of the anchors saw us and said, “You have to be in the segment!” We were wearing “Stay Golden” t-shirts as you can see.

And senior ladies are having a major moment right now with coastal grandma style trending. But older women have way more to offer than great TV and cool style…

They’re also productivity masters!

Here are four old-school “grandma” techniques to save yourself time and money!


1) Check your email in batches.

If you’re not careful, email can take over your life. It’s the thing that we’re constantly looking at and it takes us away from what we’re doing.

You get pulled into it, and then you never get anything else done.

However, my husband’s grandmother has the perfect productivity hack to prevent this.

She would not check email for days. (Yup! You read that right – days.)

It’s maybe not the most productive way to do things, but she only did it at certain times. She would do it first thing in the morning and then she would do it again two or three days later.

But think about that. Is there a way for you to not be checking email constantly and instead to do it in batches? Give yourself a little bucket of time like a half hour to scan through. And then don’t look again until the afternoon.

I even know someone who actually puts up an out of office saying she does not check email between X time and Y time. That sets expectations for those people who have sent you emails letting them know you’re not looking at it right now.

There’s also something called the Stack method. I actually did an entire episode of Inside Scoop with Prasanth Nair, who invented it. That’s how I manage my email now and it really, really works.



2) Wake up earlier.

Grandmas love to be early birds.

I have not adapted to this so much, but my producer, Ali Keller and I did a whole show about this. She actually trained herself to become a morning person and now loves to do things super early. And you can do it too!

Ali trained herself to get up earlier because she wanted to get more done. She’s a screenwriter also and wanted to make sure she had time for her artistic projects. She found when she got up earlier than anyone else, before people started disturbing her, she was able to get those things done and really capture the day.

And she’s not the only writer who subscribes to this method! There’s a wonderful writer, her name is Kate White, who was the Editor in Chief of Cosmo Magazine for many years and now she’s an author. She writes mystery novels. I’ve heard her speak many times and she says she would get  super early when she was working at Cosmo to work on her novels.

So if you’re trying to find some extra time to get something done, you might want to consider becoming an early bird.

3) Hack your shopping trip.

I love a good list. It’s in my blood. My grandma loved lists for grocery shopping. (Although hers was on the back of a napkin or something that then she would shove into her purse.)

So here’s how I handle the shopping list. I like to have a physical paper list in my kitchen. And the second I know I need something, it goes on the list.

Because I know if I don’t write it on that list, it will be gone from my brain and I won’t get it. So you have to have a capture system. Maybe you want to use some sort of app, but just something so you can do it immediately and you know exactly where to find it.



4) Prep your meals to cook more efficiently.

It’s hard to figure out your lunch and dinner plans when you’re already hungry. So don’t wait until then! Sit down and think through what you want to eat every day this week.

My husband hates that I do this because it kind of takes the joy out of spontaneity. But I don’t like to think about this for every meal, every day. The meal plan part of my life is annoying, but it’s important so I don’t have to waste brain power after working all day.

My grandma was great at cooking one meal and making two meals out of it. My mom is fantastic at this as well. We’ll make one meal and then she’ll say, “Okay, now we’re going to also then turn this into tacos for the next day.” I love  being able to have leftovers that are not just the same meal reheated. You can find on Pinterest about this.

You won’t be “Iron Chef America” right out of the gate, but planning ahead will give you creative and delicious meals all week long.

To watch the entire episode on Grandma Productivity click here!


BONUS FREEBIE: Want even more ways to stay organized, productive and less stressed? Click here to get access to my List-Making Starter Kit. It will boost your efficiency and get you back to doing more of the things you love.


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