This was a conversation that one of my clients, Jenny, had with me recently. She was frustrated because her ME TIME or personal time, was always leaking off her agenda.
Did you know that you actually can’t manage time? We all have the same amount: 168 hours per week. There is no more time. So time management is actually about managing events in time. Some events we feel in control of, others we don’t.
Jenny’s frustrations were resolved as she learned how to become the Events Manager in her own life!
It’s easy to let busy-ness hemorrhage into Me Time because you have so much to do. You become reactive to the chaos around you. Me Time becomes the poor relation getting ignored as your working day becomes longer and you start to feel out of control.
Sometimes we decide to work longer hours to get things done. This is perfectly okay providing that you feel that you are making this decision from a place of choice rather than it being imposed upon you. If you feel that the decision is imposed it can lead to pressure and stress.
Here’s how you can become your own Events Manager in your life:
- Decide what you can control and start to control it – Consider what is in your own circle of influence. You have control over more than you think. For example, you control the time you get up, what food you eat, whether you exercise or not, what job you do etc… Take responsibility and ownership for what you can control.
- Set clear boundaries for your working hours – Make a clear distinction between your working hours and time for YOU. Plan in advance how long you intend to work each day. Sometimes the unexpected happens, but if you don’t know when you intend to finish work, it’s easy just to carry on. See Stepping Out of the Do-Do Part #3
- Give yourself the night off – Set an alarm to remind you to leave work on time one night a week. Make an appointment with YOU instead. Switch off your Iphone/Blackberry and laptop when you finish work. There is life outside the inbox! See device addiction.
- Create some ‘Me Time’ – How much time per week do you actually give yourself for personal time? Often we say to ourselves: ‘I’ll go to the gym next week.’ Next week ends up being as busy as this week, so the gym never happens. Learn to value and schedule your personal time in advance. Show up for your appointments with YOU. YOU are worth it! It’s where you rest, restore your batteries and ‘live.’ Allow a little Me Time every day.
- Learn to say no – Be realistic about what you are able to achieve. Sometimes we say ‘Yes’ when we should be saying ‘no’ because we already have so much work to do and we’re frightened to let other people down. “Give me more work. Look I can do it all!” So your employers, families and friends increase their demands upon you.
Who’s the Events Manager in your life?