“I prefer to have a good plan and then see how it plays out in real time, making shifts to flow with the natural movement of a project or day to feel the wind in my sails rather than row against the tide.”
GETTING TIME ON YOUR SIDE
With the momentum of a fresh New Year fueling our hopes to make positive and intentional shifts that help us grow, I want to offer some tips on how you relate to time. Our relationship to time is key for our quality of life and our effectiveness. We want ease and efficiency. We want focus with flow. The more we understand how to heal our relationship with time, the more we are able to accomplish…and in a way that feels nurturing not depleting. So, let’s take a look at some key insights on this topic.
TIME IS RELATIONAL
Reflect on these common experiences of time:
- I feel like I never have enough time!
- Where does all the time go?
- No matter how much I try, I just can’t keep up.
- I feel guilty for wasting time.
- I loose focus, get distracted, and before I know it, I am way off track in my schedule.
When we respect someone and pay attention to them, we improve our relationship with them. It’s true for people, for pets, for houseplants, and for time. Time is a relationship we have to the present. When we pay attention to it and respect it, that relationship is satisfying.
So, how do we pay attention to time? How do we respect time? It starts by understanding that time is our friend not our enemy. When we enter a relationship with an assumption of goodwill, it helps to draw the best. Time isn’t against us. We don’t need to battle the clock or the passing of time. Time is the friend of a good investment, right? Time increases the value of many things (learning a language, a financial investment, a seedling growing to a plant). This brings us to our second insight….
TIME LOVES A PURPOSE
Just like us humans, time loves a purpose. When we are aimless, time doesn’t get to work it’s magic. When we are aware of carefully choosing our course of action, time partners with us to make it even more valuable. When we prioritize our highest value activities and immerse ourself in the moment with excellence and attention, time is our friend.
TIME IS A CURRENCY
Time is our most valuable resource. It cannot be borrowed or repaid. It only exists in the moment with no guarantee of its availability later. How we spend our time is our greatest leverage point for growth, happiness, healing, and impact.
If you want to change something, you need to track it. Taking a time audit (noting how you spend your days for 3 days in 15 minute increments) may seem tedious. But seeing how we are spending this non renewable resource is key. The average American spends over 3 hours each day watching shows and 4 hours each day on their phone. 2-5 hours are spent planning, making, and repairing purchases! That’s probably not the best use of time in the long run.
MAKE A SCHEDULE THAT RESPECTS YOUR PRIORITIES
What are your priorities? For most people, good health, good relationships, making an impact in work/community, and personal growth (in our Spirt, emotions, mindset) are at the top of the list. If any of these is stagnant or flailing, we experience stress and diminished ability to function. We want to thrive! So, let’s make the priorities a priority as often as possible.
Finding the time for enough sleep, to get fit, to meditate, to read, to finish projects, gets so much easier when we have limits on shows, phone use, and shopping. Personally, I limit these 3 activities (phone time, shows, shopping) to 1- 2 hrs total most days. That gives me time to invest in what I truly value.
LISTEN TO THE DAY. LISTEN TO YOUR SPIRIT AND INTUITION
Some days are more challenging and require more pivots. I have a magnet on my fridge that reads “Let go or be dragged.” It’s a fine line between holding our boundaries/sticking to our well considered plan and making shifts based on where things feel resistant and where there is a more natural momentum. I prefer to have a good plan and then see how it plays out in real time, making shifts to flow with the natural movement of a project or day to feel the wind in my sails rather than row against the tide.
I do the minimum on timely tasks so they move forward and deadlines are met. I focus more on what tasks are flowing naturally. Did I plan to clean the house today but find I am drawn to re-organizing instead? Perhaps, I spend 1/2 the time on the cleaning priorities and use the rest of the time to follow my inclination to de-clutter. Each day seems to have its own will that we discover along the way. We can partner with it and enjoy more ease and flow.
When we relate to time in these ways we are likely to experience more harmony, ease, and grace. We are more likely to make important progress and live more intentionally. I hope you found inspiration that will aid you as you work to make this year your best yet.
Cheering you on,
PS If you are looking for support in re-imagining your life, reach out to schedule a discovery call.