Lately, I’ve been longing for more alone time to work on personal projects, reflect to myself, and just relax. But with working, side hustling, being a mom, and all of my other responsibilities, time for myself falls pretty low on the priority list as I try to please everyone else each day.
On a drive home from work earlier this week I actually came to the shocking realization that if I spend at least 10 hours a day between working my day job, freelancing/blogging and about 7-8 hours sleeping each night, I’m spending about half of my life working and sleeping. On weekdays, that only leaves me 6 hours each day to do something different but I also have to factor in cooking, cleaning around the house, etc.
I’m sure we all lead super busy lives and that results in putting time for ourselves on the back burner. Freeing up your schedule to make more time for yourself requires an effort but your ‘me time’ and peace of mind is definitely worth it. Here are 4 ways to make it happen.
Reschedule Your Schedule
Using some type of planner, organizer or spreadsheet to keep yourself organized is a must. I usually jot down things I need to do each day in my planner and then check them off when I’ve completed them. It’s safe to say that 90% of the things I write down have little to do with spending time with myself and relaxing.
First find something that you want to do alone whether it’s meditating, going for a run, making pottery, reading or doing a craft. Then instead of organizing your day around your biggest work tasks, organize your day around that one activity so that it’s prioritized and officially in your schedule. Gotta make it official in order to have time for it!
Take 10 minutes each day to get organized. Figure out what errands you need to run, who you need to call, and what absolutely needs to be done throughout the week and how you plan to do it. Taking a few minutes to organize your thoughts and plan your next move could literally save you hours.
I always waste the most time when I’m feeling unorganized and haven’t planned out my day properly. A 10 minute mandatory reset easily fixes this.
Outsource, Delegate Tasks
Do you ever feel like you’ve bitten off more than you can chew? I’ll admit, I have my overachiever/people pleasing moments. When you’re feeling overwhelmed and short on time constantly it may be time to get some help. Think about what tasks you can outsource or delegate to others. This may involve hiring some help to free up your time, but it also doesn’t have to involve spending money at all.
Do you have friends or family who help you out? Can your spouse or SO split up tasks with you? I know when I first started blogging I felt overwhelmed with setting everything up and the whole idea of keeping up on social media (primarily Twitter and updating Pinterest constantly).
So I reached out to my little sister for help. Yup, my little sis saved the day 🙂 Teens have more free time and less worries and they are masters at social media surprisingly.
Another big secret is that even though I’m in charge of keeping our grocery budget low and planning meals, I don’t cook dinner every night. If I had to come home from work and cook dinner every single day I’d be a hot mess. A few months back I ended up teaching Ray how to cook some of our favorite meals and he’s gotten pretty good. Whoever gets home first usually gets dinner going. We usually split up cooking and chores each week so neither of us get overwhelmed with housework. It’s definitely a team effort.
Eliminate Distractions and Time Wasting Activities
Getting caught up in time wasting activities is a big ongoing issue for me. Sometimes I’m checking Facebook or even my email and it ends up being a 20-30 minute browsing session. Big waste of time!
Another major distraction is when I’m writing at home and watching T.V. or even if one of my son’s shows is on.
I’m so easily distracted that I’ve ended up watching one of his shows with him instead of finishing up my work and it took twice as much time as I had originally planned for.
I know how productive I work when there are no distractions so I’ve started setting a timer when I do certain things; not to rush myself but to motivate myself to stay focused and avoid wasting any time. I also usually start with a somewhat easy task first to get myself in ‘work mode’ then I go ahead and tackle the most difficult task to get it out of the way.
If you need to deactivate social media for a while to free up your time I’d say do it. If there are certain websites that distract you, block them for a short period of time. And if there’s a certain friend (who means well) that tends to want to talk endlessly when you’re in the middle of completing something be honest but nice and let them know what you’re working on and schedule a time to talk later.
How do you make more time for yourself and what do you like to do?
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