When you first get on my email list, I ask you to introduce yourself. To describe some of the goals you’re working on and some of the challenges you face. And one challenge that I often see is… not having enough time.
You want to do some of this, and that, and the other. But ultimately, you end up doing none of it.
Luckily for you though, there’s a solution.
All you need is five minutes
You’ve likely been told that you need to make time for what you want. It’s not that you don’t have enough time, you just aren’t blocking it out for what you desire.
Good advice. But where do you start with something like that?
Yes, planning. A common solution to a common problem that, for some reason, people don’t do. Why? Probably because it requires a little effort. Not as much as you may think though. All you need is five minutes.
Here’s what to do
I’m what you would call… umm… particular. So for me, planning out my days/weeks/months is an exciting, detailed process. You don’t need anything that intense though – unless you’re serious about this. In which case, I’m happy to show you!
But for most, simply write down:
- What you are going to do tomorrow
- When you will do it
That’s it. That’s all you need to do. And then when that time comes, do it.
Make changes as needed
The tough part is sticking to that schedule. Which, good news, I can also help with. Because, though I write about time, I generally run late by about 10-15 minutes most days (which is ironic and something I’ve written about here).
That said, I still stick to my plan. I still do the things I set out to do. However, as the day progresses I update my schedule along the way.
Things may get pushed back or rearranged, but they still get done.
And that’s the problem many people run into. They start to run late or miss their planned deadline and the whole thing falls apart. Why? It could be due to perfectionism. Maybe it’s that they start to feel pressed for time and abandon ship.
Move but don’t remove
Regardless of the reason, know that your plan is a malleable thing. You can change it, move things, rearrange tasks, you name it. Just because you said you’d go for a run at 11 AM doesn’t mean you have to.
It does mean that you need to find a time somewhere in your day for that run though.
You can’t just scratch it off your list and pretend it was never there. If you made it part of your plan, you need to make a spot for that task in your day. Somewhere, anywhere, so long as it’s there.
Going forward with enough time
You have all the time you need. It’s just a matter of shaping it into something that works for you. So plan for it. Write down what you are going to do tomorrow and when.
Then when that time comes, do it!
Or if that time no longer works, find a time in that same day for it. Don’t let time prevent you from attaining your goals. Instead, treat it like the tool it is. Harness it, shape it, use it to your advantage.