Time, Our Un-Biased Asset!

It has got to the time of the year when our conversations seem to switch on to Christmas auto pilot. It’s like the same “I can’t believe it’s nearly December already” sneaks up on us every year and catches us off guard. We live such busy lives that time seems to get away from us and only ‘socially significant’ milestones in the year shock us into realising it’s passing.

When I think about some of the best times and the best uses of time, I always come back to some of our travels. One full day would involve waking up at 3am in one country, flying to another by lunchtime, unpacking and then going off to explore an entirely new place by the evening.  Sometimes 24 hours here involves getting dressed and doing one load of laundry.

If only I could seem to find a way of packing in that much every day…I would feel like Bradley Cooper in the film, Limitless! When you are living your days fully, they don’t feel like they disappear or worse, are wasted. Time may just be one of the very few things in life that come to us all in an un-biased form, equal and fair. It is everything in between that tips the scales.

As ever, life is never that straight forward and for the masses isn’t a holiday everyday. It is easier to wake up at 3am when the purpose is a holiday. We have more energy when it’s used for the fun things in life. It is hard to keep spirits high when the day hasn’t gone well or has come with it’s stresses. So how can we find a balance of using our time fully, so we don’t end up bewildered that the year is nearly over?

Distractions

One way of taking back ownership of your days is cutting back on ‘scroll time’. The twenty minutes, 5 times a day that got lost to Instagram post swiping, reading the Facebook comment roll on a post that has no relevance to you, etc., (we are all probably guilty of this, so there is no judgement from me). Just cutting this out could save a couple of hours. Even if you used this time for something you actually wish you had more time to do, creative projects, reading a good book; whatever you enjoy, it would be better spent. I think that sometimes, if we free up some time, then we feel like it has to be used on the grown up, life ‘stuff’. Trading distractions for chores probably isn’t a strong motivator. Trading distractions for fulfilling activities that make you happy is more likely to stick.

Planning The Day

I am working on this myself as I struggle, but I do know that the value of this is high and I need to improve. The experts and life coaches talk about this for a reason. If you don’t have your own plan for the day, it can get taken over really quickly! It  leaves you frustrated and stressed when it is avoidable if you stick to the plan and implement boundaries; which leads me to my next point.

Boundaries

To actually run your own day, you have to be the boss of it and set some boundaries. This isn’t about shirking your responsibilities at home or at work or saying, “I’m not going to do it at all”. It’s about separating your time and not letting things all merge into each other.

I find this quite difficult,  because I don’t want to feel like I am not reacting quickly enough or  I am letting people down, but when this gets out of hand, it really does start to cause stress. It is not just implementing boundaries for other people, you also need to set some for yourself.

Outcome Focused

Tony Robbins talks about being outcome focused. By knowing the outcome you want, it can really help you work out the steps to create the outcome.

To List or Not to List?

There are different arguments on list making. Some people love lists and put everything on it. Some are against long lists and think it should be more concise and prioritised. Whichever side of the coin you fall, you will need something to prioritise your tasks and help you organise your thoughts. Brian Tracey wrote about ‘Eating the Frog’ and getting the ugliest task out of the way first and some people are more motivated by lots of ticks on the list.

Compounding and Procrastination

The compound effect has had a high profile recently. More and more people are switching on to the notion that the small actions that build up over time, create the biggest results. It’s the same whether it is used positively or negatively so to speak.

Procrastination may just be the compound effect in reverse. The more we put tasks off, the bigger they become, the more effort will be needed to reverse the effects, the more time it will take to accomplish etc. What always annoys me about procrastination, is that you never do anything better in the time you are wasting putting off the task. So not only do you not accomplish it, you haven’t spent the time on anything else either!  There is a reason for everything we do. If we are procrastinating, there is a cause. What’s yours?

How do you keep yourself on track?

Have a great week 🙂

 

 

Progress Is Progress No Matter How Small Your Steps

A few weeks ago, I wrote about mental health and raising awareness. That same week, a good friend of mine asked if I wanted to do something crazy and run a half marathon with her. We both wanted something that would be an achievement, force us to make progress and something to raise money for a charity that we both care about; Papyrus. This charity works to prevent young suicide and as I said previously, we both lost someone to suicide.     You can read more about my experiences with mental health @ http://lifeaboutthehouse.com/reaching-out-for-help-isnt-a-sign-of-weakness/

The marathon will fall on the 10th anniversary year, but instead of sadness, we want to be strong and create something positive.

Chris was a very funny and caring person. Unfortunately he could never seem to see and love himself the way everyone else did. But I do know that the idea that we are going to run a half marathon would have him in stitches. We don’t run. I drink tea and eat cake.

Making the decision to put in the work

The last few weeks I have started training, small steps to work my way up, plodding along like a wheezing snail, even when I don’t feel like it (which is all the time) but knowing that if I don’t train now, I’m going to regret it. It’s the same with everything in life, every time we put off doing the work, further along the line we wish we had, because we would be so much closer to our goals if we had just started when we said we would.
Today marked my furthest run to date and the best I felt when I did it. I actually could feel the progress I’d made to get to 3.3 miles and only stopping once to catch my breath.( I won’t dwell on the fact I need to add 10 more miles to that)

Progress moves us forward

It got me thinking, that progress, no matter how small, really does improve your mood and momentum. It literally comes when you do the things you don’t normally do, when you push yourself to do things that you don’t want to do.
I read this all the time, it shouldn’t come as news! But when it clicks in your head, you get the aha moment. The only thing that gets me up doing these runs, is the goal I have set myself of that half marathon and the why behind it.
When your goal has meaning it has power. It has to be more than a flakey, half assed wish. You have to want it more than you can live without achieving it.

Why oh why

For me this run isn’t about losing weight, or being fit; (they will of course be added benefits) it’s about making a commitment to my friend and myself and most of all, raising money for Papyrus and honouring Chris’ memory.
So when you are on your journey, whether that’s property, fitness or a different path, make your why bigger than yourself and align it to something that gets you moving everyday to make it happen.
My why is always my family and friends. I will do anything for them. So bring on the hard work and dedication needed, because they deserve me on my A game.
What gets you working everyday to meet your goals?
If any of you runners out there want to give me some tips on how to get better, please leave a comment…..pretty please!