Do you ever find yourself saying, “I would love to do ‘this’ with my life but I just don’t have time?”
Or perhaps you say, “If I only had enough time, I could change my life for the better.”
If so, give some of these strategies a try and see if they help you make a shift towards finding time to work on your goals.
5 WAYS TO FIND TIME TO DO WHAT MATTERS
1 – GAIN CLARITY
To get started, you need to have an idea of where you’re going. You need something to aim for, something that will guide you. A destination of sorts. Something that’s worth an evaluation of how you spend your time.
If you don’t have something to motivate you, you’ll find it difficult to see the purpose in putting forth the time and effort.
It’s like planning a road trip.
Unless you’re extremely adventurous, flexible and have a lot of time on your hands (which I doubt, otherwise you wouldn’t be here :)), it’s more likely than not that before you start packing your bags, you’d prefer to have some idea of where you’re headed.
If not, it would be difficult to know what to pack, how much time to request off and what things you want to see along the way.
Getting clarity about your life is no different.
Often times when you start feeling stuck or unmotivated, its because you have lost sight of your destination.
When this happens, you’re no longer sure what to pack into each day (priorities) and how much time to spend on the tasks that will move you toward your goals.
If this is where you’re at, here are some resources to help you find clarity:
– 5 Reasons to Develop a Personal Mission Statement
– The First Thing You Must Do to Prioritize Your Life
– How to Figure Out Your Ideal Life
– Finding Your Way: A Goal & Dream Fulfillment Process
– My Possible Life: Starts with A Life Plan (Day 1 Starts Today)
2 – DECLUTTER
As a minimalist at heart, I have taken on several decluttering projects throughout my life.
Therefore, it’s safe to say I speak from a lot of experience. If you are looking for a fresh start and a different perspective on life (i.e. clarity), you should try decluttering.
It can be a difficult process; However, when you’re done you will feel so ready to take on the next chapter of your life. It’s incredible how well it works.
Resources to Consider:
3 – EXAMINE YOUR PRIORITIES
I find it interesting when so many of us (including myself) say, ”I wish I had more time for….fill in the blank”.
Why? Because the truth is, if something really mattered to us, we would find time for it.
Would it mean having to give up something else? Perhaps.
But try this.
The next time you find yourself saying you wish you had more time for something, change your thinking to, ”If I adjusted my priorities, I’d have more time for……fill in the blank.”
Trust me, I know. This is a hard one too.
There are so many things we need and want to do and it just doesn’t seem like there are enough hours in the day.
However, when you start to take an honest look at how you spend every second of every day, you’ll probably find that much of it is spent on autopilot – doing things out of habit rather than by intention.
The more you are aware of this and regularly reflect on how you spend your time, the more likely you are to start making small shifts to remove old, repetitive habits and open up time in your life for the things you really want.
Of course, you must get clear about what you want first, right?
Resources to Consider:
– Why this One Powerful Thing is Critical to Your Goals & Dreams
4 – CREATE EFFICIENT SYSTEMS
After I went through the process of clarifying, decluttering and re-prioritizing my own life, I realized a few of my top priorities (house cleaning and menu planning) where taking up a lot of time. Therefore, I decided to see if there was a way I could be more efficient.
I’m really excited about what I came up with for both. Even though developing new systems took me a bit of time initially, they are going to save me a ton of time over the long run.
For example, when it comes to menu planning, I realized that I was on the perpetual cycle of deciding what to make for the next week, creating a shopping list, going shopping, preparing meals, etc.
The part of the cycle that was taking the most time was the menu planning (deciding on what to make each week).
Therefore, I set up a notebook in OneNote titled Menu Planning.
In the notebook, I created a tab for every month.
Within each tab (for instance, August), I have Week 1, Week 2, Week 3 and Week 4.
I then looked through all my recipes, took pictures of my favorites and uploaded 3 recipes under each week.
Now, my entire menu is planned, every week, of every month for the entire year. Say what? I know. It’s wonderful! 🙂
All I do is look at the recipes for the upcoming week and create my shopping list. So easy.
What kind of systems can you create to be more efficient with your time?
Resources to Consider:
5 – ADJUST YOUR EXPECTATIONS
Once you’re clear about your goals and dreams, it’s best to start off with reasonable expectations for yourself. What you hope might take you 2 years to accomplish may take 4-5 years.
While getting clear and more efficient with the other priorities in your life can help, allowing yourself a reasonable amount of time can help take the pressure off and allow you more freedom to enjoy the journey along the way.
Just because something may take you longer than expected, doesn’t mean it’s not worth the effort and energy, right?
If you don’t think you’ll enjoy the process, than perhaps that goal or dream isn’t meant for you.
Get started with small steps today and before you know it, a thousand small steps will lead you to where you want to be.