The term “Time Management” is hilarious. How exactly do we manage Time? First of all, is there such a thing as Time? Isn’t it just an idea that we made up? Isn’t Time a construct of our collective agreement to understand, track and ultimately control our destiny?
Well, yes it is. We create our destiny with the choices we make with our time today. That’s the good news.
The bad news is that we all waste a great deal of time. And I’m not talking about laying around doing nothing… which I happen to believe is a GREAT way to spend time! Instead, we squander this precious resource doing things that have the appearance of productivity but do nothing to move us closer to our goals or make us any happier with our lives.
Studies show that the average person wastes about 3 hours per day from small interruptions throughout their workday. The National Association of Professional Organizers says we spend one year of our lives looking for lost items. All this waste in spite of the fact that the average person uses 13 different methods to control and manage their time.
A significant way that we manage and control our time is by using a calendar or scheduling system of some kind. If you have something important to do, you put it in your schedule, right? Right.
So if I wanted to know what you value most in your life, all I’d need to do is look at your schedule. How you choose to spend your time is evidence of what is important to you. NOTE: Not what you say is important to you, what actually is important to you.
You say that your health is important to you? Let’s look at your calendar. Let me see… oh, nothing there? Your health, your fitness, your weight, and even your body image can all be explained now. You’ve got to put it in your schedule. Every day.
When my son was 10, he started playing the guitar. One day, he came to me and wanted to negotiate more TV time. He told me that his friends got to watch 4 to 6 hours of television a DAY and he didn’t think it was fair that he only got an hour a week. I asked him, “What would happen if you played your guitar for 4 – 6 hours a day?” He said, “I’d be the best guitar player in the world!” “Okay, great, you choose: would you like to be the best guitar player in the world, or the best TV watcher in the world?” He’s a pretty good guitar player.
How do you create time to be healthy and fit? Here are some ideas to put in your calendar:
- Food shopping
- Food prep time (including some precooking time so you need less time later)
- Meal times (Whaaaaat?! Why not?!)
- Cardio workouts
- Resistance training
- Sleeping (yes, you need more sleep)
- Massage (or some other wonderful, relaxing treat!)
- Meditation, prayer, journaling
Now I know you’re thinking, “I don’t need to actually put it in my calendar.” Yes, you do. Unless of course, you have already met all your health and fitness goals, then by all means, carry on!
Then there are those of you who are saying, “But I have no time!” Yes, time is limited but remember, this is about values. What is most valuable to you? That doesn’t mean it gets the most time (that’s seldom possible) but it does need to get some time. The trick is to write it down in your schedule.
This Time Management trick can also be applied to other areas of your life that you want to experience a shift in. You say you want to write a book? Put it in your schedule! You say you want a relationship? You need to allot time for that too. After all, how would anyone know how much you care about them if you don’t make room for them in your calendar?
If you spend your money on worthy investments, you reap the rewards. If you spend your time on worthy investments, you reap the rewards there too. Time may fly but remember, you are the pilot. Bon Voyage!