Have you ever had one of those weeks when you look at your diary with dread because you have no idea how you'll fit it all in? Or there are three events that you desperately want to attend but they're all on the same day, at the same time? Or the work side of your life seems all-encompassing and the studying or social parts of your life are going to have to be neglected?
Maybe you are nodding your head and saying yep, that's my life, not a one-off event.
What I realized this week is that there is more than enough time for everything that I want to do, but I had some rules around time that I needed to re-write. Some of my rules have been:
• It's rude to arrive late.
• I'll miss something important if I leave early.
• They'll think badly of me if I only show up for a couple of hours.
• It will take me an hour to get into the book, so I wont bother opening it.
• Everyone will have bonded if I show up at lunchtime and I'll be excluded.
• Family, friends will be upset if I just pop in for a flying visit.
• You can't have a meaningful conversation in just 15 minutes.
• There is never enough time.
"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." -- Anais Nin
I think we could swap the word 'life' with 'time' and it would be equally applicable. If you were courageous enough to change your rules around time, how liberating might that be for you?
What I've found is that
• Showing up, even for a short time is enough.
• Short interactions can be full of depth.
• If you advise people that you'll be late or need to leave early, they are fine with it.
• People are pleased to see you for a short time, rather than not see you at all.
• There is enough time.
• When I know there is enough time I am happier.
They secret to having more time is therefore a courageous mind-set shift.
Here are your first steps:
1. Decide that the time you have is enough.
2. Rewrite your unwritten rule book in relation to time.
3. Allocate the time you have to what's important to you and enjoy it, rather than wishing you had more and constantly apologizing or playing catch up.
Try it, you'll find that you are happier and more relaxed as a result.
I am Jenny Garrett, Executive Coach, founder of Reflexion Associates, a leadership and coaching consultancy and author or Rocking Your Role - the how to guide to success for female breadwinners. Find out more about me, my programmes, speaking engagements and training at rockingyourrole.com