You don’t find time, you create it
Oh, the famous line of “We all have the same 24 hours in a day”, yet some people always seem to have enough time for their priorities while others are constantly struggling to keep up. If you're nodding your head in agreement, it's time to take a closer look at how you're spending your time.
Today I have a simple exercise for you. Grab any old pen and paper and follow along!
Draw a vertical line down the middle of your paper. On the left side, list all of the activities that you spend your time on each day. Be as specific as possible (e.g., instead of "working out," write "1-hour group fitness class").
On the right side, assign each activity a priority level from 1-5, with 1 being the highest priority and 5 being the lowest.
Once you've done that, take a step back and look at your list. Is your highest priority activity getting the majority of your attention? Or do you find yourself spread thin across lower-priority items?
Do you have more 1s than 3s and 4s? This could indicate that you believe everything in your life is a priority and you might be setting unrealistic expectations of yourself (🙋🏼♀️it me).
If you’re like me and you find that you're not spending enough time on your actual highest-priority activities, it's time to make some changes.
Here are TWO tips that I use regularly to create more time in my day:
1. Schedule Your Time (aka Time Blocking)
One of the easiest ways to make sure you're spending enough time on your priorities is to schedule them into your day. Just like you would schedule a meeting or an appointment, add blocks of time for each of your priorities into your daily or weekly calendar. And just like any other appointment, do your best to stick to it. You guys know that I plan my life out on a week-by-week basis. This helps me move time blocks around if something happens that skews a single day.
The key here is to be realistic about how much time you can actually devote to each priority. Don't try to schedule 4 hours for something that will only take 45 minutes—you'll just end up feeling stressed and overwhelmed when you can't complete it all. Conversely, don't try to squeeze a 1-hour task into 30 minutes—you'll likely rush and end up doing a subpar job.
2. Automate & Delegate Where You Can
In order to make more time for your priorities, it's important to automate & delegate where possible. This could involve hiring someone to help with household chores or investing in technology that will automate parts of your work process. For example, if one of your priorities is maintaining a healthy lifestyle, delegation might look like hiring a personal trainer or using a meal prep service like fit-flavors.
Ultimately, if you want to make room for new priorities in your life, you need to take an honest look at how you're currently spending your time.
Once you've identified areas where changes need to be made, put systems in place to help you follow through on your commitments. And finally, don't be afraid to let go of lower priority tasks—your life will be much simpler (and less stressful) as a result!!! I promise!
Cheers to all the things you’re taking off your priority list right now!
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