Time for you to do less and achieve more? How is this possible?
Most of us are desperately trying to cram more and more into what feels like less and less time.
So we go on Time Management Training, make lists, prioritise our lists, skip meals, do less sleeping or exercising, and still there isn’t enough time. Sound familiar?
Do you know what this number is – 1440?
This is the number of minutes we each get every day.
As children, they seem to pass so slowly, and as adults the minutes seem to speed up alarmingly each year. But we each start out with the same number of minutes every day.
And yes, we can organise ourselves better, focus and be more disciplined, but ultimately, we have no control over Time…. no matter what we do, the clock keeps ticking, and it runs out on us.
Manage your energy and stamina instead
When you haven’t slept well or long enough, you drag yourself to the office or around the house, depending on caffeine to keep moving, but your brain is not firing on all cylinders, and it takes longer to complete tasks or make good decisions.
At the end of the day you are irritable with your family, and sink onto the couch with a glass of wine to relax, and watch tv through your eyelids. Going out for some exercise is too hard to contemplate. And the spiral continues downwards.
When we take the time to renew different sources of energy, then magically we seem to have created more time.
Here are some ideas to get you started.
Choose one small energy booster that you know you can achieve, do it for at least a week, and see what happens. These are quite general, so pick something that suits you.
Physical Energy Boosters
- Reduce stress: keep active, eat well, drink plenty of water
- Go to bed earlier and reduce alcohol and caffeine
- Take brief, regular breaks at 90 – 120 minute intervals during the day
Emotional Energy Boosters
- De-fuse strong negative emotions by abdominal breathing – try those 3 breaths to switch off the adrenalin response
- Encourage positive emotions – appreciate others and yourself, and here it is again: SMILE!
Mental Energy Boosters
- Keep away from phones and emails when you need to concentrate on a task
- Limit responses to email and voice mail (and social media) to specific times during the day
- Read or learn something new, play Scrabble or Sudoku
Spiritual Energy Boosters
- Enjoy activities that inspire and fulfil you: do something creative, listen to uplifting music
- Take time to relax and meditate
“But I don’t have time to do all this!”
Ignore that little voice whispering in your ear!
When you focus on boosting your energy levels by making just one small change at a time in your daily life, you will find that you have time to do what’s important to you, and more.
Try it and see!
Jane is an inspiration
Jane was very stressed and not managing the demands of job, children, and her husband working shifts. She dealt with stress by eating so felt bad about her weight. She told me later that she had tried many interventions to sort things out, and she wasn’t convinced that working with me would help.
After a short period of making small changes, she said in great surprise: “I’ve got all this time now! I’m not sure what to do with it!”
Nothing else had changed, yet she now had the time to enjoy creative crafts and play with her children. She has gone from strength to strength at work, and developed her own strategies to lose weight and become fit. What an inspiration!
Successful business people, performers, athletes – all have coaches or mentors.
Successful change and growth can be a challenge. Coaching enables you to identify small action steps, and provides accountability to keep you moving forward.
So where are you going to start?
Please be sure to choose one small step, and when you have achieved it, reward yourself.
Let me know what happens!
If you need some encouragement and support to make the changes you want, and to de-stress, check out your7steppingstones.co.uk
©Jenny Cooper 2014
This approach has been used in large corporations: “Manage Your Energy, Not Your Time.” by Tony Schwartz and Catherine McCarthy, Harvard Business Review, October 2007.