It’s official. Last month we saw the passing of the summer solstice, marking a tangible half way point for the year. Ummmm… Anyone else wondering how we got here so fast?!
It feels like only yesterday we had a whole year ahead of us, a fresh blank canvas for to create, build and grow. So what about all those things you said you’d do in 2022, the resolutions and intentions? The lists & carefully curated vision boards?! (C’mon, I know I’m not the only one who does this every year !)
Are you exactly where you thought you’d be OR is the year flying by so quickly that you’re left wondering how you’ll ever get around to doing that thing you want to do. You know… the thing?!
Whatever sprang to mind for you, thats YOUR thing. Whether you decided this year was going to be THE year you finally started that side hustle, writing a book or maybe it was making your health & fitness a priority but you’ve just struggled to find the time.
Whatever it is for you, Im here to say…. theres still plenty of time to pursue your goals and dreams this year. Loads!!
So how do we magically find this elusive time that we always seems to be lacking?? Firstly, we have to start with a few mindset shifts so that you can see the time you really do have and actually create time to do the thing.
Well, that’s a little misleading….because we can’t actually create time, but what we can do is free it up and choose to spend it differently!!
Because more often than not, you don’t need MORE time. What you really need, is a little more self belief and a little less procrastination. You have to stop wasting time faffing around and doubting yourself. There. I said it!
It’s honestly the most common reason that people give for not seeing through their goals and dreams - “I don’t have enough time!!”
But as a coach, it’s my job to challenge those beliefs, so you can move forward.
Don’t sell yourself short by making excuses.
So, are you, hand on heart, making the most of the time you have available? Or do you know deep down that with a little organisation and focus, you might just secretly have that time stowed away, ready to put towards something wonderful & meaningful? If this is ringing a bell, this post is for you!!
There are 5 strategies that I will commonly use with clients who are struggling for time . Different things come up for different clients, so I really suggest giving each one of them a try, don’t just pick one and give up because it didn’t quite yield the answers you we’re looking for.
So here’s how to really find out the truth about how much time you actually have spare, and how to make better use of it….
1. Diary For A Day
This is where you log everything you do in an average day.
From the time you wake up, to the time you go to sleep and how much time you spend on everything in between. It sounds super boring but this is actually a great way to highlight exactly where your time is going, or more accurately, where it could be going!
Think of as more of “mindfulness” exercise - sometimes, just doing this activity alone is enough to make you want to spend your time better, Nobody want to write down “spent 4 hours watching Netflix” and still complain they have no time, right?!
2. Get Intentional
What is the first thing that springs to mind when you think about where your free time goes. And is it really a priority?
If it is a priority, lets say for example, spending time with you kids or family, how can you find a way to work smarter towards your goals AND still spend time here? What would a healthy, sustainable balance look like for you? Creating a schedule might not sound sexy but it can be absolute gold when it comes to making the most out of your time and pursuing your goals whilst also not sacrificing vital elements of your life.
On the flip side, maybe that thing that springs to mind for you, that’s taking up a lot of your time isn’t quite so important, you’ve just gotten into a pattern, a routine without being conscious of it. Maybe you find yourself spending a tonne of your time keeping your house immaculate, or every evening without thinking about it, you switch the tv on and start scrolling Tik tok! (I mean, who hasn’t done that??!) And every so often isn't a problem, but if it’s every night….
You have to honestly ask yourself how important that really is in comparison to your life and goals, and the bigger picture.
One of the easiest ways to look it is this “If i say yes to this, what am I saying no to?”
So, saying yes to 4 hours of Netflix every night means saying no to 4 hours dedicated to writing the book, building a side hustle, working out, or whatever it is you’re trying to create time for.
3. Check Your Phone
Which leads me to the biggest time sucks ever- time spent on your phone.
This is one is super easy and a real eye opener. You just have to check the usage of your phone in the settings, including social media usage. I once had a client that was struggling to find time to write for her blog and was absolutely mortified to discover that she was accumulatively spending 5+ hours a day on her phone. I mean, you can do A LOT in 5 hours!!
It’s a simple but brutality effective jolt to reality the next time we say we don’t have enough time.
4. Rest & Sleep
This one might seam counterintuitive, if you’re thinking “I already don’t have enough time and now you want me to rest??!” But hear me out!
A lack of consistent, quality sleep & rest, which includes doing activities that bring you joy, will absolutely impair you ability to be able to function productively and therefore use your time wisely.
You know that groggy “meh” feeling you get when you’re tired? It leaves you feeling uninspired to do anything beyond the basic, mandatory tasks. That’s what I’m talking about. Its so hard to motivate yourself and exercise discipline when you feel shattered!!
So get some decent sleep and schedule time for restorative rest. Dedicate some time doing things that light you up and bring you joy!
5. Go Deep
So if after all this, you’re still struggling to “do the thing!” And you’ve freed up that “extra” time but something is still getting in the way, maybe you find yourself procrastinating and doing everything BUT the thing you said would do because now you’ve got this free time you’re rearranging your wardrobe etc etc…..
Then it is time to step back and reflect on just what it is you’re afraid of. Because ultimately it’s our fear that holds us back.
Fear of failure, fear of judgment from other peoples opinions, fear of change, fear of it not being “perfect” and a lack of self belief that we can even “do the thing!” all play a huge role in why we procrastinate on things that are so important to us.
So what is it you’re worried about? And where do you really want to place value, because that’s what it comes down to…. If you’re valuing other peoples opinions over creating something for yourself, or trying someone new, then its going to cost you.
When you get to this exercise, you have to weigh up the cost of NOT making the time to “do thing”
Dare to try out a little self belief with the knowledge that you can learn what you don’t know along the way, there is no such thing as perfect, change allows for growth and other peoples opinions don’t pay your bills…
Extra Tips For Goal Setting
I wanna add a couple of little side notes here, that I think are super important to mention when it comes to our mindset when achieving our goals and managing our time…
One of the biggest misconceptions is that you need LOTS of time to accomplish these goals, when that’s simply not true. I mean, who has large chunks of time free just floating around, ready to make stuff happen?! No one I know!! However, small fragments of time consistently spent will add up and lead to big things. Don’t underestimate the power of spending just one hour a day dedicated to pursuing your goals!!
And finally, another big misconceptions people have on this topic is that they think they need willpower or motivation to do create change… Which also isn’t necessarily true. Both are great, but both can be fleeting and based on your current mood. Which is changeable depending on circumstances, so this isn’t really a reliable source. In reality, what you need is dicapline.
Discipline will get you far greater results when it comes achieving your goals and how you manage your time is no exception. And discipline is like a muscle, the more you exercise it the stronger it gets, the stronger you get.
Regardless of your approach, or of your goal, taking full responsibility of your time is the only way to create a space for your goals and dreams to become a reality. And whilst you can’t “make more time” You absolutely can take control of how your time is spent!