Do you even know or care what time it is? I think the most difficult thing about time management is just keeping track of the time. There are many tools and advisements for those seeking help with time management. I believe they are all well intended, but really, how truly applicable are they at accomplishing what they were created to do?
Let’s see, I have taken count, and if I truly wanted to give all the time I wanted, to every task that required my time in one day, I would need well over 24hrs. I recall it ranging close to 30. That’s only 6hrs over the typical day, but this was not figuring time off. Time off for myself. My time was always allotted to someone else, either a family member or work.
So, does one do? I think what most do is sacrifice what they identify as less important. That can be different for each person. Some may think that house cleaning is less important, those darn kids and pets are going to destroy the place anyways. Others let go the meal preparation, there’s always take out. A lot will neglect themselves, a shower and a spruce up in the morning are enough, giving to others throughout the day will compensate for my personal neglect. Believe it or not, there are those who forego sex, I’m too tired, don’t have time and that’s what happens when you have kids. Rarely do any sacrifice their responsibilities to their employer or their family. There might be slight exceptions, but the worst is to put our employer and their needs before ourselves and our family. Yet, if we don’t we might lose that job, our income and the lifestyle we are accustomed to.
Geesh, I believe I am guilty of all the above! I get excited when I get to thoroughly clean the house! That is a day off of work and someone to watch the young kids. No help from the oldest, or at least without a fight! If I were to listen to Frances Booth from Forbes magazine, I would take an inventory of my time expenditures for one week and identify where time was well spent. I can see where this would be valuable, similar to looking at your spending for one week. But, when did my toddler puking on me and pooping all over the bathroom become a routine time expenditure? Or, how about that employee calling in sick and now I have to be to work at 4:30am instead of 7:30am? My favorite is when my car has been selected to be the latest form of entertainment for the local hoodlum? Now, I’ve got to spend the morning filing police reports and getting windows replaced. My point is that no matter how much inventory that we take, our time expenditures are ever changing and very difficult to predict. My answer to time management: plan as best I can, but roll with the punches, be flexible and prioritize in the moment.
My plans for today have changed at least 3 times. But it will all get done and I will adjust with a good attitude. This may mean prioritizing at that moment. The kids want to go outside, the sun is shining, the ground is dry, sure let’s go outside and I’ll mow while you play. I will put off scrubbing the toilet until they go to bed. Keeping a good perspective, about anything in life, can make things very tolerable or even enjoyable! I don’t really want to ever wash that toilet, it’s not a glamorous job, but I like to keep germs at bay and minimize any opportunity for infection that my family may have. Get it done!!! Once it’s done, it’s done! I don’t have to do it again (at least until its dirty again).
So, start your day tomorrow with a plan. A plan that moves with the breeze and can withstand the hurricane. Meaning let it ride and don’t be so completely steadfast. Be flexible. Some tasks will be accomplished, maybe even all of them, and other may not. The day will be more enjoyable if you start it knowing, and accepting, that it may not go as planned.
I’ve started using a free app called Goalist. It might seem a bit difficult but I strongly recommend going through the tutorial when the app opens for the first time. It explains everything wonderfully! The features are abounding. Check it out. Let me know if it helped you or not.
How’s your day going? Any insight to your time management? Any questions on how I handle certain situations? Comment below and we’ll have a great discussion!