To organise and plan, means we have to have time to do so initially.
And, with time always running against us, how are we going to hit our goals if we can’t catch our breaths? I mean, I can’t be the only one who is wondering where on Earth half the year went?
It’s September, and I’m sure the last time I blinked it was March.
Recently, I made the decision to begin freelance work; I currently content create through a website which puts me in touch with clients. It’s been eye-opening for sure, because I really didn’t expect any work through it, but surprisingly, I’ve had at least work each week. To stay on top of all of this new work, I knew I needed to look at what time I have; it’s important to me to be organised, and so I knew I needed to plan and organise.
Unfortunately, as humans, we don’t realise the time we spend mindlessly. It’s why it’s so important to maximise our time as much as possible. We begin watching Netflix for one episode, and before we know it, we’re on season five and have ordered food in.
Not managing your time can have an adverse effect on mental and physical health. It can hurt our sleep, our eating patterns, while also worsening our procrastination and helping us to create even more negative habits.
It’s why I wanted to come here and share 5 ways to find more time. Tips I’ve put into practise since the beginning of this year. Some of them are fun, and some of them are just meh, but overall, I much prefer the time I’ve gained, than the time I’ve lost.
Track. Your. Time
Unfortunately, the first thing we need to do is find out where your time is going. (This is the ‘meh’ part of the five tips and tricks). When we learn where time is going, we can begin to assess whether we are spending it wisely.
From the moment your eyes open, to your head hitting the pillow, write down what you are spending time on.
However, you don’t need to record toilet breaks, that’s your personal time, as long as you’re not spending an hour on the toilet because you want to scroll on Instagram.
I’ve created a weekly downloadable you can get here.
I like to use this to plot out my week, and all the commitments I have; it’s also useful to track the things I have accomplished too.
Create An Organised-Wishlist
This is important before we move to the next step, because if there is something you are struggling to find the time for, now is the time to write it down. Setting targets (or goals) for how organised we want to be, will make sure we have the drive to complete it.
For example, if there is a fitness class you really want to attend, write that down. If you’re only managing to hit the gym twice a week, and want to hit it three times, write it down.
It’s also worth writing down what day you’d like to achieve this on.
Don’t forget, also, to include a ‘rest day’.
This doesn’t have to be a day where you rest all day and waste your time, but a lighter-loaded day so you don’t feel like you never stop.
Organise It Out
My FAVOURITE part of this five step process: Organise your week.
Understandably, there will be things we cannot predict or plan for. But having a plan or a timetable for the things we do know are happening, can help us juggle our workload.
You can make this as personal as you like, but I have a specific process I use to have my work laid out:
- Work: I prefer to have my work commitments in different colours, to separate when I’m working on my blog, freelancing or at my day joy.
- Necessities: appointments, meetings.
- Wish List: That wish list we had before, add that in the spaces left, this will create the mindset that we can achieve what we want to, enforcing our belief in ourself. Double win.
- Fun: Do you have dinner plans? Are you likely to see someone for dinner, schedule it in so you don’t become overwhelmed. Even if this time isn’t used in the end, it’s free time.
Live By The Organise-Time
Now we have a timetable we love, using all the things we need to make it ours. It’s time to live by it.
Easier said than done, right?
I like to have my timetable accessible to me on-the-go. So, I usually print mine and pin it to my cork board in my home office, while also having a copy in the diary I carry around.
This makes sure that I am sticking to the plan I’ve set out for myself, and able to look at a quick glance if I am free or not to take on more work.
This is especially important if you, like me, are freelancing, as jobs can snowball on top of you if you struggle to say no.
Breathe, and Smile
It can become easy to feel like we’ve failed if we fall off our timetable, but this final point is here to remind you that you are anything other than a failure.
If you set out to try, and didn’t manage to achieve, that’s fine. That’s life.
But, also take a look at your timetable. Glance at what you did achieve, did you achieve more than you usually would? Hell, even highlight some of it. Is the colour your chose showing you completed a lot of the tasks you set out to do?
Remember, if we achieve five days out of seven, that’s still an A. There’s always another week for us to try for the A*, but for saying we started this not having a D, we’ve smashed it out of the park.