The Secret to Editing a Month of Photos in One Week…
Editing

Secret to editing a month of photos in one week

I have figured out the most amazing secret to get on top of your editing. Are you ready for it??

10 minutes.

Yup, that’s it!

Buy yourself a little timer and place it by your computer. Set it for 10 minutes. You CAN NOT check your email, facebook, twitter, or pinterest account during that ten minutes. Open up your editing program and get busy. When the timer goes off you can get up and walk away. However, if you are in a groove then keep going.

Here’s why it works:
When you get really behind on your editing it is so overwhelming that you know you don’t have the time to edit all the images. Therefore, you edit nothing! Instead, tell yourself that you only need 10 minutes a day. You know you can find 10 minutes. Maybe that means waking up 10 minutes before the kids, during nap time or after everyone goes to bed.

No matter what type of mood you are in and don’t feel like editing, if you tell yourself, it’s just for 10 minutes you are more likely to do it. Give yourself permission to edit as much as you can in those 10 minutes and then walk away!! This is why a timer is important. You don’t need to waste time watching the clock. Just go-go-go until it dings.

If you have time after the timer dings export those photos to flickr, smugmug, facebook, or your blog. This way they are there waiting for you when you have the time to do something with them.

I started using this technique a couple of weeks ago and I have edited a TON of images! I still have lots to go. I used to be really good at keeping up with my images but I have fallen behind. In the first week I edited a whole month of photos! Wow! Can I tell you how much my mom appreciated that :O) She finally got to see those grandbabies of hers.

There would be days where it was 9:30pm and I was tired and hadn’t edited yet. I knew I only had to do it for 10 minutes and so I did. Some days I quit after 10 minutes other days I kept going for 20 or 30 minutes depending on my mood.

Do you want to join me in my daily 10 minutes of editing?? What do you do to stay on top of your editing?

38 Comments
  • September 12, 2011 at 10:06 AM

    Nice work! This works for my cleaning schedule… I can totally see it working with editing. I think I will have to join you in the 10 minutes of editing… and organizing photos!

    • September 12, 2011 at 10:47 AM

      Yes, I used to do this too for cleaning – Fly Lady. However, cleaning has fallen by the waste side :O)

  • September 12, 2011 at 10:46 AM

    Great idea. I have also used the 15-minute increments for cleaning up my house (do one task for 15 minutes then switch). I think that idea came from http://www.flylady.com. I think I will have to try your suggestion :-)

    • September 12, 2011 at 10:49 AM

      Yeah, I used to use Fly Lady’s 15 minutes too :O) Now, I prefer to edit over cleaning! Ha!

  • September 12, 2011 at 11:11 AM

    I was just saying to my husband this morning that I have to figure out some routines to get on top of my editing and blogging workload. So perfect timing for your tip! I get behind every weekend as I take too many photos and then don’t want to start editing new ones till I’ve finished the previous days.
    Great idea Courtney, I’ll have to try it out!

    • September 12, 2011 at 12:07 PM

      I do what I can to help :O) he he

  • September 12, 2011 at 12:42 PM

    I’m a huge believer in using 10-15 mins to work on tasks. I accomplish more than I thought possible. Thanks for the reminder that this works with editing too! :)

    • September 12, 2011 at 2:32 PM

      You are so right! You could get TONS done with the 10-15 minutes on anything :O)

  • September 12, 2011 at 2:24 PM

    I believe you are currently reading my mind!!! I’m so overwhelmed with my photos from our trip that I’ve just not edited them and now am way behind. It makes me sad and scared that they will never be finished. I definitely will be trying this starting tomorrow and I’m even going to get that little timer too! hehe

    • September 12, 2011 at 2:31 PM

      I know exactly how you feel! I still have photos from our trip back to the States in Feb. that needed to be edited. This 10 min a day has helped it not seem so overwhelming!! :O) You can do it!

  • Lenora
    September 12, 2011 at 2:38 PM

    It’s so true. I started doing this about 3 months ago. I take my laptop to work with me & edit my pictures on my lunch break. I edit for about 20-30 minutes almost every day. This has helped me so much. I’m actually almost done w/ 2010. I recently printed about 400 pictures and was able to show all my family during a Sunday lunch. One of my goals this year is to complete a photobook…so I’m on my way.

  • September 12, 2011 at 3:01 PM

    What a great idea! And it can apply to so much more than editing photos. My biggest challenge with editing photos is that I tend to just edit one or two when I’m getting ready to post on my blog. This leaves lots of great photos completely unedited just languishing in a computer file somewhere. Maybe your 10 minute trick will help with that!

  • September 12, 2011 at 7:55 PM

    No Pinterest? Whatever will I do? Hehe :)

  • September 12, 2011 at 9:47 PM

    Yes!!!! I do!!!! I have a session I am still editing for a friend, but have had so much other stuff going on that I can’t finish them.

    I set a timer every morning for quiet time, then reading, so I’ll do it with editing.

  • Rachel
    September 12, 2011 at 10:55 PM

    That is such a great idea! I also used to do it for cleaning but quickly gave up on that!

  • September 12, 2011 at 11:56 PM

    It helps that we have one computer that is pretty much dedicated to a) paying bills and b) editing photos and video.

    The rest of the time we use laptops downstairs. So I go once a week and on that computer that’s all I do!

    It helps too that I’ve lost some of my perfectionist tendencies. I try and perfect a couple of my favorites, but the rest only get some basic adjustments. I just can’t spend that kind of time on snapshots.

  • September 13, 2011 at 1:25 AM

    Ohhhhh! I am so going to practice this!

    and your statement –

    When you get really behind on your editing it is so overwhelming that you know you don’t have the time to edit all the images. Therefore, you edit nothing!

    That statement rings so true!!

  • September 13, 2011 at 7:48 AM

    I almost hyperventilated when I read 10 minutes but I’ll give it a try on my next batch of pictures. GULP. Ha.. It would help cause my MIL just emailed me this AM I still haven’t received the pics of the kids from Labor Day.. Hmm I did send her 2 doesn’t that count? :)

  • September 13, 2011 at 8:44 AM

    Yes, I love doing ten to fifteen minutes on anything:) From cleaning to writing to editing pictures, it works great:)

  • September 13, 2011 at 2:27 PM

    What a great idea! Here I am, behind on blog posts and instead I’m web surfing and doing everything but editing. So if I follow your tip, web surfing can be my reward after I’m done rather than a way of stalling and putting off what I find so overwhelming at times! Thank you for the inspiration!

  • September 14, 2011 at 4:12 AM

    I think I love you for posting this… :) I am terrible for not editing because I’m overwhelmed by how much I have to do – going to try this starting today!!

  • September 17, 2011 at 5:49 AM

    Oh my gosh–this is SO helpful! I just started *cough cough* today using the 10 minute method and it works wonders :) I need to use this with cleaning, blogging, organizing photos, etc. Our 3rd daugther was born 3 weeks ago (we also have a 2 year old and a daughter that just started kindergarten…we’ve been blissfully busy :) ) and have taken a ton of pictures, but haven’t had a chance to edit them for birth announcements or my blog. Now I feel totally overwhelmed with the editing process. I finally sorted through the pictures and made a list of which ones I should edit and am slowly getting through them. I’m pretty picky about my newborn pictures…. :) Thank you :)

    • September 17, 2011 at 10:03 PM

      Congrats on your newest angel!! What a blessing!! I know how you feel about all the photos feeling so overwhelming! I’m glad you are trying to tackle them with 10 minutes a day!! It will definitely help you put a dent in those photos :O)

  • January 6, 2014 at 12:29 AM

    Thank you very much for this post. I spend to much time multi-tasking.

  • Beth
    January 26, 2014 at 2:23 PM

    Since I do a lot of kiddy parties for friends, I often take about 500 shots in an afternoon.
    I never go to bed without uploading.
    Then, later or the next day, I delete all the crap,
    Then I usually take a break and do the detailed editing . It helps to break it down.

  • January 26, 2014 at 2:57 PM

    I’m so behind on my photos right now, will definitely need to start doing this!!

  • January 28, 2014 at 8:55 PM

    ACK! I’ve never edited any of my images. Except for my blog. What should I do w/ personal ones? I think you told me Lightroom – any other tools I need? Thanks so much! Getting on top of this is really important to me.

  • Pat L.
    May 30, 2014 at 8:47 PM

    My problem is taking way to many pictures and then making the time to sit and go through them. I like this idea. I also need to be careful how many I take. 2800 on a 3 week trip in November and 1200 in one day last week at a Division Review. Lol. I need help with that. I just don’t want to miss anything.

    • June 2, 2014 at 1:10 PM

      ha ha I hear you on that one too. I’m guilty of taking a lot.

  • May 30, 2014 at 9:00 PM

    This is a great idea and it works for lots of things…exercise, doing the dishes, cleaning a cluttered room. I’ve used the 10 minute timer for all of those but now I’ll do it for editing, too. thanks!

  • May 30, 2014 at 9:07 PM

    Brilliant idea! Definitely joining you for this challenge. My biggest problem is easily getting distracted when trying to edit my pictures. Thanks for sharing your little secret :)

  • May 30, 2014 at 9:39 PM

    I use the timer trick for everything. Even housekeeping chores. I’m so easily distracted, and that timer has been my salvation so many times. I set the timer for different amounts of time depending on the project. When I’m writing a paper for school, I set it for 20 minute increments – 20 minutes of work, 20 minutes up and moving around, and I actually stay focused better with the interruptions of the timer than without.

  • May 30, 2014 at 10:01 PM

    I’m in! I have a lot to edit and I’m starting right now, good night! I must put my timer ;)

  • May 30, 2014 at 10:14 PM

    Huh. That’s pretty genius. Thanks!!

  • May 31, 2014 at 12:22 AM

    i have never heard of this – its brilliant! I am starting my Project365 tomorrow 1 June and I have started a blog as a way for me to document the journey of photography growth and at the same time life :) I was wondering how I was going to fit it all in – learning photography, learning editing, learning how to blog, learning how to Instagram and then my normal day to day things. This is the perfect way! Thank You Thank You Thank You Courtney!

Leave a Comment