‘How we spend our days is of course how we spend our lives’ Annie Dillard
Every day is filled with moments. And each moment is filled with feelings. These moments make up our hours, which make up our days which fill our weeks and become months and in turn years. And we get to decide what we feel with each moment. Are you currently saying each time you look at your calendar ‘I cannot believe it’s JUNE! Where did the year go?’ Do you feel like it’s going too fast, that you can’t keep up? There is a solution. SLOW. IT. DOWN. and Change Your Concept Of Time.
You’re the only one who can do this. Relish each moment, even the tough ones, the tricky moments, the uncomfortable moments, as they each hold a learning. Relish the charming, the joyous, the engaging and the funny. Relish them all.
You can’t change time passing, but you can change your perspective on it.
‘If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude’ Maya Angelou
We’re going to shift our perspective on time, and what we do with it, to create more happiness and relaxation in each moment, and in turn each day. Would you rather be stressed? Or relaxed? If you would love to live your days relaxed AND incredibly productive, then read on…
Let’s take a look at 20 minutes. I want you to think about these examples…
20 minutes on a Sunday afternoon on social media
20 minutes in traffic running late for a meeting
20 minutes meditating
20 minutes waiting at the hospital on test results
20 minutes dozing in the sun at the beach on a holiday
20 minutes writing emails in between meetings in a taxi
20 minutes lying in your lovers arms in bed before you have to get up and go to work in the morning
20 minutes reading blogs on the internet, this one included
I think you’ll agree they are all different kinds of time, and they can pass either incredibly quickly or agonisingly slowly.
When we look at a week, with 24 hours in each day, we have 168 glorious hours in each week. The average work week apparently is 38 hours, but let’s average it out at 50 hours a week. With 8 hours sleep a night, we are left with 62 hours a week where we are not sleeping, and not working. What are we doing with that time? Let’s take out 15-20 minutes twice a day, EVERY DAY each week. Now we have 58 hours a week.
WE HAVE BECOME MODERN MASTERS OF UNPRODUCTIVITY.
It’s no wonder we feel strung out and stressed, where is all that time going? How are some people accomplishing more and more and others seemingly less and less? Why are some people frantically busy, and others chilled out and relaxed? And does their state of mind reflect their productivity and happiness?
These are all questions I would like you to ponder. Do a TIME AUDIT on your days and weeks and see what exactly you are up to. And after the Time Audit, let’s try a few things
– Stop Saying You’re Busy; what we say to the world when we say we’re ‘busy’ is that we have no control of our priorities nor what we do with our time
– Be Mindful Of Your Actions; catch yourself before, or mid activity and ask the question; does this add to or subtract from my personal evolution and happiness
– Begin Batching; things done together get done faster. If you want to be more productive, do like minded things together. Can you imagine if you tried to do your meditation in 4 x 5 minute blocks. By the time you sat down, relaxed, took a breath and introduced your mantra, it would be almost over, and then you would have to start again in an hour or so. It sounds ridiculous doesn’t it! Well, are you doing that with emails, phone calls, checking Instagram and Facebook? Lots of little stops and starts? Rethink this strategy and begin batching things.
After the Time Audit, which let’s face it, can continue to be refined constantly, let’s focus now on what makes you feel good. You have those 58 hours in the week – are you doing things that make you happy or miserable? Stressed or relaxed? Remember, this is time outside of work. Are you carrying your work stress with you all the time? Can you bring a little holiday feeling into every day? What are the little things that bring you joy? What do you love most about the weekends? Can you sneak a little weekend fun into each and every work day?
Start questioning, and start actioning. Good luck.