Do you often feel like you’re struggling to find time to complete the many things you want to or need to do? Do you feel as though there’s never quite enough hours in the day?
Sometimes it feels like there’s no ‘right’ time to do things, or worse yet – no time at all.
Whether it’s making that phone call to someone, preparing your meals in advance for the next day, paying (never ending) bills, meditating (which always needs double time after paying aforementioned bills), or just generally sorting your life out.
But here’s a little (not so) secret I’ve learnt along the way: time either runs you, or you run time.
Time waits for no one.
There is no ‘right’ time and the concept of time itself is an illusion.
Time, like money, is just another form of energy.
I’ll be the first to admit I’ve heard myself say countless time over the years, ‘where did the time go?’ ‘I wish time would slow down’ ‘I can’t believe how fast the time went…’
Yet with a little mindfulness, self-awareness and discipline, I am learning (and yes, it’s a continuous process) how to get more done in less time, make an hour feel like three, and make time my friend not foe.
Whilst the reality is that the hands on the clock will keep on spinning and time itself will continue to pass, there are ways to make the most of the time you do have.
You can set up simple systems and processes that will help you to feel as though time is on your side and that you have some say in the matter (hooray)!
Time can become more productive, effective and fun!
So, without further ado, I have five tips and tricks to help you feel as though time is on your side rather than against you.
1 // PRIORITISE PRIORITIES
What is truly important to you? What are your values? Are you spending time in ways that are aligned to those?
Think about where the majority of your ‘spare’ or ‘free’ time is spent? Are you making the most of that time doing things that are meaningful to you? Aka, is mindlessly scrolling through Facebook or Instagram really helping you move towards a brighter future and the best use of your time?
Become aware of where chunks of your time seem to often ‘go missing’ and look at how you can adjust your priorities.
2 // MINIMISE TIME THIEVES
Time thieves – you know, those cheeky things that seem to rob you of time without you really noticing? Things like social media, watching TV or funny cat videos (ok, some are pretty amusing), or complaining about all the things you need to do and lack of time you have to do them in instead of just getting on with it and actually doing them!
Get creative with this one. Say you usually watch an hour or two of TV a night, put a timer on for 60-120 minutes and see how many things you can tick off your to-do list in that time instead. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.
3 // DOUBLE TIME
Think you don’t have any time to call your friend for that overdue chat? Struggling to find time to exercise, and buy groceries for dinner? Maximise your time by combining activities for maximum output.
For example, why not plug your headset in and call your friend for a chat whilst doing your grocery shop or exercising? You’ll be achieving two things at once and save yourself a whole lot of time in the process.
4 // ACT UPON ARISING
When something comes up, whether it’s a text message or email to reply to, a task or favour for someone else, we often push it aside wondering how on Earth we’ll ever find the time to get around to it. Save yourself the pain and frustration by getting into the habit of actioning something when it arises, then and there. Often things don’t take as long as we think they might but when we let all those little things accumulate they can end up feeling incredibly time consuming and burdensome. Take action in the present moment.
5 //TAKE 5 TO MAKE 10
This isn’t the first time I’ve spoken about the wonderful wonders of meditation, and it certainly won’t be the last. Meditation is sometimes looked at as a ‘luxury’ or ‘indulgence’ – and it certainly and beautifully feels like it is during – that people can’t afford the time for, yet, one of the many benefits of meditation is that it actually feels as though time is slowing down.
It allows you to get more present, peaceful and ‘clear’ which, as a result makes what you do following it much, much more effective and efficient. So stop, drop and meditate!
Let’s face it: each and every one of us has 24 hours in a day, no more, no less. How can you start reorganising and prioritising your time better to ensure you are making the most of your twenty four?