Racing round the clockface

Do you remember time seeming limitless when you were a child?  There was time to go out and play.  Enough time to watch your favourite telly programmes.  Time to curl up in a corner with a book.  Time seemed simple and straightforward – you didn’t need to wear a wrist watch.  Imagine the following: you see a calm stretch of water with ripples billowing out over the surface. The ripples are events - good and not so.  The water absorbs excess energy from the events and thereafter everything moves on the surface as in a calm dance. Time felt manageable. 

And what of time now as adults?  It can feel turbulent as if out of control.  Multi-tasking is the norm.  We juggle countless projects, chores and dreams in the air, and sometimes it’s hard to know how to best manage them.  Here are some ways to overcome the chaos.

1. Prioritise

Decide at the end of every day what your priorities for the next day are going to be.  Mark them 1-5, with 1 being ‘must do’ all the way to 5, which is ‘would be nice if I can make the time’.  There should be only a few at most of the 1s for each day.  This way you get clarity on your short-term goals and know where you’re heading.  Tie these priorities in with your long term goals – how are they helping you achieve your overall vision?

2. Be realistic

What can you humanly achieve?  Unless you want to wear your underwear on the outside by being a superhero, you’ll have to honestly assess what you can achieve.  Try scheduling 1 work or fun activity for each key period of the day.  So you’d have a key task for each one of the morning, afternoon and evening.  These you’re determined to achieve.  The other things that you know you have to do you will fit in around. 

3. Leave some room to wriggle

Allow more time than you think you will need. This makes your schedule flexible and allows for the unexpected.

4. Can you miss anything out?

Can you take something out of your day to lighten the load?  What doesn’t contribute towards achieving your goals?  Take it out and feel able to breathe more easily.

5. Use what you’ve got well

Get into the habit of using your odd five minutes here and there more productively.  They’ll add up throughout the week!

6. Are you working with your emotional intelligence?

I had a client who wanted to go running in the morning to train.  His logic told him it was best to fit it in then.  Problem was it felt like an uphill grind.  He loved running but not at that time in the morning.  In the evenings he struggled to find ‘me time’ and would flake out in front of the telly so that his mind could find some peace.  I suggested working with his body and mind by switching the running to the evening.  From then on his running felt effortless.  So use your reason and your emotional intelligence to get the best results. 

7. Allow time to relax, recharge and do nothing.

A relaxed person is far more efficient than someone who is stressed out.  Run a bubble bath, get a Reiki treatment, go for a walk . . .


Article Date: Tue, 22 May 2007


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