If you’re anything like me then you will have a huge list of things you want to do. Yet finding the time in your busy, jam-packed schedule can be pretty difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. You simply need to be more mindful of how you’re spending your time. Today I want to share with you some tips on how you can make time for everything you want and still have time to relax.
Cut Down Distraction Time
Sometimes we can feel like our schedule is completely full but in reality, we are wasting a lot of time being distracted by social media. Browsing through Instagram and trailing off on YouTube, watching our favourite bloggers. Sometimes we don’t even notice how much time we’re wasting, 15 minutes here and another 15 minutes there all add up, and we actually waste a lot of time being distracted. If this sounds like something which you do then you need to cut down distraction time in order to make room for your passions.
One thing I do to stop myself from being distracted is to leave my phone in another room when I’m working on a project. For example, I like to wake up early before work to make time for my blog. As I’ve gone to the effort or waking up early I don’t want to waste my time being distracted, therefore I leave my phone in another room. I can then sit down and focus my time and attention on my blog.
The days of believing you’re good at multitasking are over. Research suggests that people who multitask are less likely to be productive, in fact, we are much more effective when we focus on one thing at a time. To stop wasting your time, you need to stop multitasking as it divides your attention and leads to sloppy mistakes. By concentrating on one thing at a time you will eliminate distractions as well being able to complete your tasks quickly, you will also make fewer mistakes and therefore have less work to do. That sounds like a no-brainer to me!
However, with that being said there are a few occasions when multitasking is perfectly acceptable and will actually save you time. For example, when you’re driving you can listen to helpful and educational podcasts. When you’re on the train to work you can read a couple of chapters of your book, sometimes I use my commuting time to write blog posts.
To make time for everything you want you to need to decide on your non-negotiables. These are tasks which you absolutely have to do, such as going to work or picking the kids up from school. These can also be tasks which you really want to do, such as going for an early morning swim or doing yoga.
Task: Write a list of all your non-negotiable items.
My non-negotiable’s are:
- Commute to work
- Half marathon training
- Spending time with my boyfriend, Ash
- Seeing my friends and family
Dream a Little
Now that you’ve written a list of your non-negotiable’s it’s now time to dream a little, or dream a lot! Think about all of the things which you really want to make time for. What is your ideal life, actually, what is your dream life? Don’t hold yourself back from anything. There may be things in your non-negotiable’s which you wish you had more time for, such as spending time with your family or blogging, if so you can add these items to your ‘wish list’.
Task: Write a list of all the things you want to make time for. Then next to each item, write how long you would like to dedicate.
My wish list:
- Blogging (1.5 hours in the morning)
- Adventures and days out (Fortnightly)
- Yoga (45 minutes, once a week)
- Journaling (5 minutes a day)
Design Your Time
First, block out time for your non-negotiable’s such as work or school. Next, take out your ‘wish list’ and see where you can schedule these items. Be realistic and don’t pack too much into your schedule, by keeping space between each task you will allow time for self-care and those little unexpected things in life.
I recommend starting with your morning routine, if you set your alarm before the rest of the house wakes up and before you need to start your day, you can set time aside to do the things you love. That’s why I wake up early every weekday to work on my blog.
In the middle of the day, there are so many things which can distract us. For example, in my personal schedule, I would need to block the daytime for work, therefore I don’t have much time for myself during the day. Apart from my lunch break when I can sometimes schedule exercise, such as going for a run. However, you know what works best for you and your schedule.
The evening is a good time to wind down from the day, during this time you might want to schedule something a little more relaxing such as journaling or reading. However, like I said, you know what works best for you and your schedule, play around with your planner and see where you can fit in the things you love.
How Does it Look?
Now that you’ve scheduled your ideal week, you should hopefully be able to see that you can make time for everything you want. However, if your schedule is looking a little packed then I suggest you re-think your time. You want this schedule to become part of your daily/weekly routine therefore you need to allow yourself downtime, otherwise, you will burn yourself out and end up not making time for any of the things you love. If you can’t fit everything from your ‘wish list’ into your week then pick your favourites for this month and then next month you can mix things up. You can do this exercise on a weekly or monthly schedule, whatever works best for you. Remember, you are in control of your time.
Those are really useful tips! Thanks for sharing, im really impressed with your blog. Keep going ???
Hey Kamile, thanks so much, that’s so nice to hear 🙂
Yes to stop multi-tasking. I used to think I was a great multi-tasker, but now I focus on one thing at a time, and it is much more productive!
I agree! We can be so much more productive when we focus on one thing at a time. Thanks for commenting 🙂
These are excellent tips! I am using these tips now because I have a lot going on now. Thank you for these tips!
That’s amazing that you’re using these tips already! My life feels so much more controlled when I stick to my morning habits 🙂 Thanks for commenting x
These are all great tips! I’m horrible about getting distracted, but working on it to do better.
Hey Brittany, I’m so glad you like my tips! I’m exactly the same, I can get distracted so easy, usually by my phone! But I’m getting better 🙂
These tips were extremely helpful. As a college student working 2 part time jobs, involved in 2 student organizations, and with a small dog, I feel like I have no time for anything. But you’re so right. I need to start getting up early and setting goals. Also, social media is so very distracting. This was a very helpful post, thanks for sharing.
Hey Bina, it sounds like you have an awful lot going on in your life right now. I would definitely set yourself a morning routine to help you feel more in control of things. You could even try setting yourself an evening routine too, if that works for your schedule? Good luck! I hope you find the right work/life balance 🙂 x
I love productivity post! Thanks for these awesome tips definitely getting that Free planner, too!
Amazing! I’m so happy you enjoyed the post 🙂 Yes definitely grab the free planner. It’s available as a PDF and on Excel, just in case you want to change the colours or layout of your planner. Thanks for commenting.
Avoiding distractions is one of the most important differences that I’ve seen lately – focusing on one task and setting a time limit (i.e. I have one hour to finish this blogpost).
I’m also learning that I can’t do it all and some things will have to be sacrificed. After getting married, I expected myself to cook 3-4 times per week but I has not be possible at ALL – I get home from the gym at 6:30 – 7:00 PM so my time is limited. So being realistic with my time and setting priorities and non-negociables are really important!
Hi Seppy, I completely agree! When I set myself a time limit to do one task then I can focus better and not get distracted by all of the other things on my to do list. Sometimes we can put such high expectations on ourselves so being realistic with our time and setting priorities and non-negotiable’s is really helpful. Thanks for commenting! x
I absolutely agree with not multitasking! There have been times when I was multitasking because I was overwhelmed with all the things I had to do, wrong move on my part! Great tips 🙂
Kate | https://allthetrinkets.wordpress.com
It’s so easily done, we can feel overwhelmed with the amount of things on our to do list and try to get them all done at once. But we are much more effective when we focus on one thing at a time. Thanks for commenting 🙂