Ask anyone what their number one problem is these days and they’ll tell you it’s lack of time. Time. There’s just never enough of it. Feeling too busy to do the things that are important to you is a real twenty-first-century problem.
What it all boils down to is perception. The hours you have in the day are completely as you perceive them. This is why when you’re a child one hour feels like one year, because you have nothing to compare it to, you have no perception of time. As we get older, an hour becomes a minute, and a year flies by in an instant, it’s not just because you’re busy, it’s because instead of only having five years, or ten years of experience, you have twenty, thirty, forty. The more years you’ve lived, the more warped your perception of time becomes.
There’s also a reason why, if you’re doing something uncomfortable it seems to last forever. If you’re in a one-hour workout class, there are moments when you might wonder why the seven-minute HIIT sequence has actually lasted seven years, while if you’re meeting with friends and family for a much-awaited party, it’ll fly by in the blink of an eye. It’s time to cure that modern ailment of having no time if you’re struggling to take control of your hours, don’t worry we’ve got your back.
1. Figure out where your hours are going
The absolute best place to start would be where you are right now. You should keep a detailed diary of the hours in your day and see exactly what you’re spending time on, you’d be surprised. You might be spending too much time procrastinating, do you really know how much time you scroll through Instagram and whether you could be doing something more productive in that time?
You need to first decide if you’re spending your time on the right things. We designed the Getting Stuff Done planner to help with just that, while you write your plan for the day you can log your self-care and decide if you’re actually looking after yourself enough. Because, let’s face it, besides the time you need to spend on
2. The magic ‘d’ word
Delegation. You can’t expect to have more hours in the day if you don’t delegate. Delegating everything from home chores to work tasks will help free up some time for you. Start making a list of things you can outsource now, and start giving tasks away. If you want to have more time, you need to give time away. If you can give something to a junior or intern that you normally wouldn’t, something that has a little bit more responsibility for example, that serves to cut some hours for you.
Ask yourself what you can cut down. For example, do you really need to organize and clean for an hour when you can do half an hour of good enough cleaning? It’s a waste of time to try and do everything perfectly, of course, you want to be a perfectionist at work but at home, and with your own goals, you can do something well, but not necessarily perfectly.
3. Block in your non-negotiables
Every week you should have one or two non-negotiables that you work your schedule around. For example, you want to work out every week, schedule one night out per week, have eight hours of sleep. These are the building blocks that you build your life around, these things shouldn’t go on the back burner and be worked around everything else, instead, they should be the foundation on which you build your day.
Open up your Getting Stuff Done planner and use that to build the foundation of your day. What do you need to make time for that you’d like the rest of your life to follow? Drop all your to-dos and start from scratch, this might worry you, but building your ideal day is the best way to get ahead.
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