I don’t have enough time! Have you said this before? I literally used to say this every day. This excuse used to run me and I’m gonna take a wild guess that it runs a lot of you. It’s an excuse for not getting stuff done and it’s probably been a huge part of your life for years, just like it has mine.
I have decided to break up with this excuse though, and I think that you may want to as well. In service of building healthier relationships with everyone and everything in my life, I think its time I create a healthy relationship with my time, too.
I recently had an aha moment while listening to an interview with Katie Dalebout and Gabrielle Bernstein on Wellness Wonderland and came up with 4 simple tips for breaking up with your excuses and having more time:
1. Sleep. Sounds counterproductive, right? Moms, entrepreneurs, students, executives and basically everyone in between seem to be on the grind so much that they neglect sleep. People cut down on sleep because they are afraid that they won’t have enough time to get everything done. Yes, eight hours may be a lot for some people, but if you know your body, you know how much sleep you need to be your best. However, when we decide to neglect sleep, it makes our waking hours less valuable. Functioning productively while tired is way more difficult and everything from doing your hair to cooking a meal seems more stressful and exhausting. Sleeping an extra hour or two will set your body up for way more success during your waking hours. Sleep well, live well, repeat.
2. Meditate. A year ago I probably would have closed out of this blog when I read this word because meditating was “so not me”. I thought people who meditated were way out of my league spiritually and that I was far too much of a realist to rely on a process that seemed so idealistic and unproductive. Who has time to sit around in silence when there’s tons of shit to do? As divine timing has it though, information and books about meditating just kept appearing in my life. In my work as a coach, as a teacher and as a seeker of peace and success, I began noticing that a lot of my gurus and mentors were adopting this practice and sharing the benefits of it everywhere. I would stumble upon blogs, articles, old books and even Instagram posts about the power of meditation. As corny as is sounds, everyone was doing it; I had to try it again. I decided to really open my mind and body to the process and invest a few minutes each day in a meditative state. When truly in this state, you feel peace, ideas begin to flow into your mind and the energy that you have after is more focused. To make it work for you, you must truly invest yourself in the process, really open up to it and get into the meditative mindset. Once you do so, you will totally understand how taking ten minutes to meditate makes the minutes that follow so much more valuable. (I enjoy Gabby Bernstein’s guided meditations; check them out here.)
3. Stand up for what you truly want to do. Are you on social outings overload? Do you have FOMO (fear of missing out)? Have you over-volunteered yourself for something? I am very, very guilty of all of these. I have trouble turning down a trip to the beach or happy hour with the girls and I have trouble saying “no” when asked to help out or volunteer for an event or organization. I overload my social calendar and find that the time that I thought that I had is spent doing things that I do not always want or plan to do. I mean, of course I want to go to the beach and I want have drinks with my girls but I also want to finish my book, build my business and try out a new yoga class that I’ve been putting off. We must be careful with our time and prioritize our wants. Be aware of what you want and ask yourself what you want more. Your friends will get over it and the beach will still be there next week. Life is about balance. It’s healthy to be social but do not neglect your true wants and don’t be afraid to turn down a few outings in service of YOU!
4. Treat Yourself. Start tying your accomplishments to mini rewards; positive reinforcement is not just for kids. Everyone likes to be acknowledged for their awesomeness and its time that you start acknowledging yourself. Also, when we know that we get something for getting our stuff done then we are likely to be more productive. Did you organize your closet? Did you finish a project that you have been working on? Maybe you managed to finish your entire to-do list or you made it to the gym five times this week. Whatever you did took time and you made time for it, nice work! Go buy a new nail polish, spend an hour at the park with a good read or try out that new cupcake place down the street. Be nice to yourself, especially when you have used your time wisely.
You really can make time for the things that you need and want to do. Tweak some of your habits and have more time…. besides, we all have as many hours in a day as Beyonce, right?