How I'm Trying To Work On My Time Management Skills & Making Time For Things I Love
Something that I've mentioned quite a lot on this blog is that I really struggle with is my time management skills. I'm super organised and I can write a to-do list like a pro but I do struggle with managing my time and schedule properly. And that's become even more prevalent since I've become busier with two pups, running a house and just trying to keep up with life, seriously how do people with children do it? Anyway, here is how I'm currently trying to manage my time a little more efficiently and make time for everything that I love in life.
Probably one of my worst habits is that sometimes I can quite unrealistic with what I can actually achieve in a measly 24 hours. This isn't to be confused with being hard on yourself or thinking that you can't do something as that's a different beast entirely. It's more than I seem to believe that I'm capable of doing six different things at once whilst still giving them all of my attention which is just impossible. Being realistic with yourself doesn't always sound the most exciting thing and it's hardly going to be turned into an inspirational quote that you'll find on the likes of Pinterest but that's ok. The more honest I am with myself the easier I find it not get so down on myself either which is something that I certainly struggle with. By being a bit more honest and saying hey I can't do it all at once feels so liberating as it's all too easy to get caught up in the worlds crazy standards. And we all have a different idea of what we can realistically achieve in a day so it will never look the same as someone else's.
SETTING MYSELF A FIRM TO DO LIST BUT ALLOWING ROOM FOR ERROR
We're all too aware that I absolutely love a good to-do list, I've bleated on and on about them for years and years on this blog. And I have to write a to-do list every single day otherwise I find myself feeling a bit lost and can never ever remember what on earth I'm meant to be doing. But there is an art in writing a good to-do list, it's not just as simple as writing everything down. Oh no, there is a lot of structure to actually getting things ticked off for me. The general way I write my lists are with a time structure in mind, so I have my morning, afternoon and evenings tasks and then within that structure, I like to rank the tasks in order of importance. That way it helps me get the most important things done first at an appropriate time and then anything near the bottom of the list can be done later on in the day and if it doesn't get done then it's not the end of the world. Something that has taken me a while to learn is that by having super strict lists is that it doesn't allow for any wiggle room in your schedule which is something I believe we all need if possible. Having that room to allow for things to run on a little or an impromptu phone meeting can really help avoid that awful I'm stressed out of mind feeling that I'm all too aware of. And subsequently doing this means I've stopped cramming my days so full and returning back to my first point of being realistic with myself.
saying no without guilt
Something that I certainly struggle with is saying no to things without feeling an immense amount of guilt afterwards for no real reason. Now I've started to say no to things a little more it feels way less terrifying which is so important as it shouldn't be so scary. From the second we can make our own decisions we're told how important it is to make other people happy but we also have to stand up for ourselves too, that is so important and not spoken about enough. It's not ok to push our schedules to the absolute limit or make ourselves run down and subsequently poorly just because of someone else. Of course, it's important to make time for our loved ones and things of importance but if we can't always do that then that's ok. And so often it's not just saying no, it might be saying no to one thing in order to be able to say yes to another so it's all a balancing act.
NOT GETTING TOO COMFORTABLE
Whether or not you work from home or you're studying and writing essays we all probably know the temptation of sitting on the sofa or in bed in our comfiest clothes. Because who can sit at home in skinny jeans?! And I won't lie and pretend I sit in my finest attire to work because I don't. But something I have to stop myself from doing is getting too comfortable and snuggly because once I do that then I tend to fall to sleep within seconds with the dogs curled up to me. As of right now, I'm not able to sit at my desk quite as much as I'd like as Edie needs to be close to the garden for toilet training purposes so I find myself on the sofa quite a lot which isn't ideal but it works. And I'm not saying make yourself ridiculously uncomfortable in order to be productive because that doesn't work either but slumping down surrounded by a thousand blankets can be just as bad for our productivity levels.
living isn't a luxury
The reason why I'm so desperate to work on my time management skills is that I don't want living life to become sort of luxury for me. And the things I want to do aren't extravagant or expensive, in fact, I'd say they're pretty normal needs and wants in life. Things like having the time to have a shower in peace or enjoy a dog walk without instantly going back to my to-do list and panicking. Being busy is so celebrated and so normalised so we seem to have forgotten that life isn't just about work. There are so many wonderful things that life has to offer and for us to appreciate but we seem to forget about them in favour of wearing our busy badge of honour. Making the things I love a priority and non negotiable has completely changed how I do things and ultimately made me more productive.