In our modern day, fast-paced lives it seems like rest has become a bit of a bad word…synonymous with lazy. If we aren’t filling every last moment with something to do, then are we even doing anything? Even with the best intentions, we often find our schedules bursting at the seams. This is where learning how to budget your time is a must if you want to live your life on purpose…your purpose.
In case you needed some permission to take a breather, here it is: it’s ok to rest.
In fact, it is absolutely critical that you do. You have lots of important things you’re doing in your everyday life, and it requires you to be the best version of yourself for that day. Whatever assignments you’ve been given in this season of life, they need you to be on your A-game.
I used to be so guilty of filling every last moment with something to do. My Google calendar looked like a paint by numbers gone wrong. If I got done with work or a project early, I’d immediately start in on something else even if it wasn’t on my calendar for that day.
My brain never got a break. I felt exhausted, short fused, and like I wasn’t getting where I wanted to go any faster. You will never feel like you have enough time or got enough done. That is just a fact I’ve come to recognize and continue to wrestle with daily.
As women today we face so much external pressure to be good at all the things we see others doing well, and when we can’t we often find ourselves feeling shame around not being good enough.
So what is your metric? How do you know when you’ve done enough?
When you’re working on the things that matter most to you, that’s when. Whenever when we fill our agendas with things that don’t really matter to us, we are too exhausted to do the things we’d rather be doing.
The “AHA!” moment came a couple years ago, when I had overextended myself with projects and committees that were important..to someone else, but they were things I thought I should be doing if I wanted to be a good mom. It occurred to me I was trying to be someone else’s version of me.
Instead of leaving my calendar to chance, I had to start telling my time where to go. I to start putting MY priorities on the calendar. Rather than trying to fill every last minute with something to do, I started leaving white space in my calendar. Which meant I also had to get good at saying “no, thank you” to the things that weren’t a heck yes for me.
One thing to remember is: YOU own your time.
Which means YOU must tell it where to go just like you do your money (if you’ve got a budget set up, you know what I’m talking about).
If you’re not planning ahead of time *how* and *what* you want to spend your time doing, you’ll be answering to everyone else’s requests all day long.
So, set yourself up to win with this scheduling strategy—
1. Carve out some time this week to plan ahead (for me, Sundays work best)
2. Pencil in your appointments and fixed commitments
3. Pencil in YOUR free time. This is time you don’t have to do anything. Side note, even though I enjoy moving my body, it still feels like a must so that I can be healthy. So for me, that would not go into the free time category.
4. Pencil in the other things.
When you take charge of your schedule like this, you fill your calendar with YOUR priorities, instead of letting other people fill it with theirs. It’s amazing what that sense of ownership over your time will do for you in so many different areas.
If you’re working around others and their schedules, it’s good to know that perhaps not everyone will be on board at first. That is ok. Work together to find a solution that works for everyone. And be prepared for some difficult conversations if your family has a hard time with you setting boundaries around your time.
When you set boundaries around your time and honor those boundaries, you find you have more time to have fun, to do something nice for yourself, be more present, and ultimately more engaged in your most prized relationships.
You go from feeling wiped out and resentful to feeling a sense of calm you may have never known before. When you create peace around your time, naturally it will lead to peace in other areas of your life too. In fact, you may find some of those pesky behaviors around food might start dwindling. Now that’s what I call a win 😉
P.S. To get your hands on other strategies and insight, sign up for the wait list to join the Mindful Eating Project. Spoiler alert, it’s not just about the food…