So it is February 1, 2015 and many of you made resolutions or set goals for the New Year and probably many of you got a little sidetracked on those goals and resolutions…why? Isn’t it easier to deal with the critical, the immediate, the in your face issues than it is to work on those issues that would be “nice” to work on but don’t appear to be so critical. But maybe your goals are more critical than you think—they were important enough to make them, weren’t they? Here are some ideas to get you back on track…
Weight loss, whether through diet or exercise changes are number one for New Year’s resolutions and goals, and they are the easiest to get side tracked on. Why? Partly because we don’t manage our time wisely, but probably because we don’t plan for a realistic day. Somehow we think we will have 30 minutes several times a day to make a healthy nutritious meals, an hour and half to run and weight lift and we will never ever be tempted to stray from our plan!? Not true—any of it! Sometimes you will have 1 minute to find something to eat, and you need to be prepared with easy to eat 1 minute meals, and 5 minutes, 15 minutes and if you are really lucky and have an entire 30 minutes then great make something more extravagant. The same with working out—if you can find 20 minute pockets of time to work out you will be further ahead than those who wait until they have an entire hour to hour and a half that they can devote to working out! You can work out several times a day and incorporate other activities into your work out like watching something you normally would do sitting down.
Getting a handle on your finances in the New Year (especially after the holidays have just ended) can seem futile. But remember it is not where you are that matters as much as where you are headed. You can make changes right now as to where you are going with your finances. Have you gone through all of your monthly expenses to make sure you are in the right product? Unused data, channels you never watch, deductibles you never use, warranties that don’t make sense, magazines you never read…question everything see if you can get a refund or reduce your future monthly spending! Then look at your discretionary spending and see if you feel you are making wise decisions. You should be able to save money and have some for discretionary spending, if not you need to think of ways to increase your ability to make money. There are amazing ideas coming out daily—you probably have one inside you right now!
The master of sidetracking is time management. Keep a piece of paper next to you (computer/app if you must) but every time you realize you have gotten sidetracked—write it down! Right as soon as you notice and then the approximate time spent. At the end of the day, look at your list of things to do that you did not get done and look at your sidetracked list and ask yourself—was this the best use of my time today?
Do you want to feel that you should be doing what it is that you are doing? Have you ever gone to the office and thought about everything you need to do at home and then once you got home thought of everything you need to do at the office? Conversely, have you ever been in the moment? Whether it was a crises or a massage or vacation, or maybe a deadline that had to be done? What do each of these have in common? You need or want to be there during the time that you are there. While crisis are not scheduled they take precedence and you realize that you need to be where you are and nowhere else. In the case of the massage or vacation you scheduled it, looked forward to it and planned on doing it at the time that you are doing it. You Scheduled It!
Family, Friends, and Alone Time
Schedule everything that is important to you! Date night, family night, movies with friends, alone time with a bubble bath. If you don’t know when you are going to do these things, how do you know you are going to do them? By scheduling these things that are important to you, you won’t be thinking that you should be doing them, because you know exactly when you will be doing them.
House Cleaning, Errands, and Finances
Yes, it is important to schedule the more mundane things in life as well. Knowing that Saturday afternoon is your housecleaning time will keep you from going through the whole week wondering, “When will I get to clean the floors and when should I do that load of laundry?” I am not saying that if certain issues arise that you can’t go ahead and do what needs to be done. But, whenever you find yourself worrying or wondering when you are going to get around to doing something get your calendar out and schedule it. The same goes with errands, if you plan on dropping off dry-cleaning at a certain time you can create predictably and work your schedule so that you have a clean suit whenever you need it. Speaking of laundry, if you don’t need to do laundry every week then change it to every other week and see if that works into your schedule better.
Work and Projects
We all have various things that need to be done in our work. Schedule your various functions so that you are not wondering all morning long when you are going to get to the agenda for the next day’s meeting. Put it on your calendar and focus your efforts where you are needed now and do what you have scheduled when your reminder goes off.
When you think about your day and what you need to do, what are your intentions? Do you have goals? When you do the things you need to do are you intentionally doing them to achieve your goals? Many people who have won the lottery have said that when they bought their ticket, they bought with the intention of winning—multiple times! People who have succeeded had a vision of what they would achieve and even in some cases—when! Each golf swing, each lap in the pool, and each call had intention.
When you think about it the majority of our disagreements in life have to do with conflicting intentions. We may be at odds with other people’s intentions. So do we need to give up on our own intentions to keep the peace…NO! We do need to understand the other person’s intentions and hopefully they will want to understand ours. Sometimes both intentions can occur at the same time and there really is no threat, even though at first there was a perceived threat. Sometimes you have to take turns and then of course there is the dreaded compromise. I really am not a fan of the compromise, I do ironically feel that letting someone else’s intentions be just as important as our own as way to make peace. It is not giving up, it is not compromising…it is saying that what the other person wants is just as important as what you want.
Every day we have to look to our own intentions and see why are doing what we do. Sometimes days go by and we have no idea why we are doing what we are doing, watching what we watch, or talking to whom we talk with. When you are preparing to do anything, pause for just a second, and say, “What is my intention?” “What would be my best outcome?” “Please make that happen!”
Sherri Sue Fisher, author of TimerOrganizer and TimerDiet
Making the best use of your time sometimes has to do with knowing your value. Every day we have to make decisions on how we spend our time. Many times we will spend hours on things of little importance or value or even lacking in fun or entertainment. Why? Because we don’t think about the value of our time.
Your Time IS Truly Invaluable
When you think about it—your time is invaluable. You can’t buy more timer, per se. You can pay someone else to do something that would otherwise take your time. But, you can’t go back in time and get the wasted time back for anything…the argument with your friend/lover/child that should of never happened and you know you need to get over anyway, the driver that cut you off and almost caused an accident that you talked about for weeks, the time spent sitting on a couch looking at a square that shows you other people’s lives (TV)…none of it.
Life Is About Decisions
Obviously we are not going to make 100% use of every minute of every day. We need to have fun time, personal time, fitness time, relationship time, work time, living life time…but if we thought about time as the irreplaceable commodity that it is every minute of every day, we would definitely use our time as wisely as possible. So while we can’t think this way 100% of the time perhaps we could think about it a little more often.
Sherri Sue Fisher, author of TimerOrganizer and TimerDiet
Last Friday I did a Back to School blog for www.TimerDiet.com/blog discussing breakfast, lunch, and snack time for kids along with daily physical activity. Today I want to talk about organizing our time and helping our kids organize their time, and this includes chores and other various activities. Right before school used to be when my daughters and I would have our family meeting. We would have them at various times throughout the year, but for sure before the school year started we would discuss plans for the new school year. On the table were topics of activities the girls wanted to be involved in, schedules, and of course household chores.
We all have pockets of time that come into our lives and we have the option to use them or waste them. If you aren’t sure that you have pockets of time:
Do you ever find yourself waiting on hold for more than a minute?
Do you wait in line at the store for more than a minute?
Do you work out on a treadmill, bike or elliptical machine?
Do you ever find yourself in the waiting room of the doctor’s, dentist, salon, or similar?
Do you ever find yourself waiting on someone at a restaurant to arrive?
How do you use these pockets of time? Checking your phone for social media messages? Check e-mails (10 times in 10 minutes!) What if you made a list of things you could do with each of these pockets of time and try to memorize them; here are some of mine.