Doesn’t it just feel like there isn’t enough time in the world to get the things you need to get done, done?
I often feel like this, usually when the hanger sets in at work and I don’t know what I’m going to do for supper.
This feeling happens when I think about my future and I have no idea when I’m going to find the time to get started on my dream passion projects, or achieve goals I want to achieve.
I know I’m not the only one who has the same problem.
There’s only six that I have after work to get everything I need to get done, if I want to get enough sleep to function the next day.
If you’re anything like me, you know that you’re going to want to spend that six hours laying in bed, watching Game of Thrones, or scrolling through Instagram’s ‘for you’ page (I can get sucked into that page for hours).
The thing is, I know I should be getting my workout in. I know I should be meal planning, and working out, and writing for my blog. There’s really something about an 8-5 day that takes it out of you.
So when you’re about ready to throw in the towel, what do you do?
1. Narrow down what is important to you
You may have read my about page, and you can even see the “about” section in my sidebar.
Anyone can see that I want to be an activist, a health nut, a traveller, etc. I want things even beyond that list.
I can’t do everything. I’m barely hanging on doing what I’m doing now.
The key, then, is to break it down. Focus on one or two things at a time. I don’t have all the time in the world, so I’ve got to give myself some time to get used to habits that I want to introduce into my life.
Say you want to be healthy like me. You have to give yourself time to meal plan (a lot, as I’ve discovered this past weekend). Give yourself time to figure out a process that works well for you. Figure out what works and what doesn’t.
Then, let it become a habit before trying to introduce something new into your life.
Another example is trying to reduce waste.
It’s going to take time to train your mind to remember that you need to bring the reusable cutlery packets every time you want to go out for fast food (and also to remember to ask them not to put cutlery in your doggy bag)
It’s going to take time to figure out which composting option works for you, and which items you can and can’t recycle.
Everything takes time, and seeing as how I don’t have a lot, using mine to really focus on getting a habit ingrained and down pat is essential.
I show you an example of narrowing down what’s Important to me in the first of my Monthly Goals Series.
2. Set time apart to work on what matters
It’s so easy to get sucked into other things that aren’t important. Have you ever found yourself twenty videos deep into a youtube page about whether a cat likes this or that food better?
When it’s time to go to bed, and I’ve done nothing but binge Riverdale on Netflix for the third time in a row, I’m left with a feeling of dissatisfaction.
Life starts to seem like an endless loop. Wake up, go to work, eat, couch potato, sleep. Repeat.
The dreamer in me wants so much more.
So how do I cut lazy time out of my life?
Taking time out of your day to do specific things. Saying to yourself “from six to seven, I’ll work out.” and acting on it. Set it as an alarm in your phone, put it in your daily calendar, and do it.
Have the necessary items already easily accessible to you so its not a chore to do what you already don’t feel like doing. Trust me, it’s so much easier to work out when my shoes, clothes, and water bottle are already in my workout bag. That means I just have to grab it and go.
And if all else fails, please remember; five minutes is more than nothing. Ten minutes is more than nothing.
Do you feel like you have absolutely no time to work on what you should be? Put five, ten, fifteen minutes on your clock. Set it and use that time to really buckle down and do what you should be.
Doing breeds motivation, not the other way around. So get to it, and if when that timer goes off and you’re done with it, you got fifteen minutes of work done. That’s the worst that can happen.
I say this so much, but planning is crucial for whatever you’re doing.
Wanna eat healthy? Plan what you’re going to eat. Want to work out? Decide what parts of the body you’ll focus on and what workouts you’ll be doing. Need to write a blog post? Brainstorm what it’ll be about and the points you want to touch on.
I’m terrible at planning. I’m the type of person who has a vision and just goes at it, no plan in place.
And guess what? I usually fail.
It’s really discouraging, especially because I hype myself up about a project, and rush in head first only for it to fail.
Here’s an analogy for you. A carpenter is trying to build a chair. She has all these ideas of interesting designs she wants to mark into the chair, and rushes right into it, head bursting with inspiration. Forty eight hours and one chair later, she’s disappointed with her work. It wasn’t as grandiose as she was hoping, and it’s a little small.
Now here’s the same carpenter, same idea for a beautiful, hand-crafted chair, but she’s sitting at her drafting table, making sure every single detail is to her liking before so much as touching a piece of wood. One week later, and she has a chair that she’s so proud of, and is every bit as captivating as she’d made sure it would be.
This goes for all things. It goes for projects, like chairs, or artworks, or blog posts. It also goes for lifestyle projects, like becoming healthier. Have you ever given up before you even started because you didn’t plan, and couldn’t think of what to do on the spot?
You want better for you. And so do I.
Where could it take you?
I just want you to imagine for a second that you put these keys in the locks. What would your life look like if you opened the door to do what you really want to do?
Could you quit your nine to five? Would you post cute gym pics of your rockin’ bod to instagram? Would you have the peace of mind of someone who’s doing all they can to preserve the beautiful world we live in?
I’m in the same place. For years now, it’s been Netflix and unhealthy snacks and forgotten projects.
But I want to see where life can take me.
I’d love to hear what you think of my strategy when I feel like I don’t have any time. Do you do anything different? I always love hearing new ideas to trick myself into being productive.
I always appreciate a share, and even if you don’t, thank you for reading! See you next time.