Many people with complex lives complain about the fact that they don’t seem to have enough time, that life is busy. I have talked about being busy and making time before, and we must realize we have all the time we are ever going to get!
Certainly, our perception of time can change, and by renewing our purpose in life, we can claim more quality time. However, time itself is absolutely a source where we don’t know when it will end. So, the only option for anyone is to do better with the they have. Before the holidays arrive and consume all of our time, running errands, Christmas shopping and driving from house to house, I invite you to take a time inventory and time out for yourself.
Use a sheet of paper or a computer spreadsheet to draw a grid. Make the cells large enough so that you can write a few words in each. Across the top, label the columns with the days of the week. On the left side, label the rows with the hours of the day starting at midnight and ending at 11pm.
Fill in the cells of your time grid with what you are typically doing during those times. Time spent sleeping takes up many squares. Fill in regular work hours, appointments or any other typical event in a week. Also, include the time you take to get ready for work, to prepare meals, laundry, cleaning and hobbies, like the gym or hockey for kids.
Now look at your grid. The squares are most likely not all filled…and that is not a problem, not because you are not doing enough, but because you can’t account for how you are using time. Maybe you are missing out on time.
You can improve your awareness of your time by taking a time inventory over a period of several weeks. Create several time sheets that are blank and as you go through time, write down actions that you’ve done in each one hour block.
At the end of several weeks of keeping this log, answer these questions:
- Where was the time productive and rewarding?
- Where was the time that you enjoyed, or renewed your energy, spirit and motivation?
- Where was the time for your personal goals and dreams?
- Where was the time for you to plan your work, organize your home or life?
This Christmas Time make the time for YOU. Take time to slow down, stop with the busyness of life for time you won’t ever get back.