Wish you had more time to start a side business or run your existing business?
Then you’re in the right place. I’m giving you THE secrets to taking control of your time. It’s not rocket science, but it’s pretty damn radical given modern demands on our time.
If you want to be …
- satisfied with what you accomplish every single day
- satisfied that you use every minute of your day to do the things most important to you
- satisfied that you’re making progress toward your goals and enjoying that progress, because, while crossing the finish line is exhilarating, the path there should be just as gratifying.
… I’ve got a time management exercise that will help you dramatically change your life.
My tips work for everyone, whether you’re starting a part-time business, a full-time business or just want some tranquility in your life.
If you’re running on all cylinders and are about to burst a gasket, you need to change gears. (Hey! I just made a car pun!)
FIRST THINGS FIRST
So, did you do the assignment from last time? (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, click here.) I hope that exercise was an eye opener on how you spend each valuable minute of your day.
Although … you may have noticed a little hiccup in my buck-a-minute exercise. See if the following rings a bell:
“Why, my dear Ms. Lovely, I spent 30 flipping minutes/dollars cleaning the effin’ bathroom. I didn’t want to do it, but it’s something I gotta do – unless I want my family coming down with some weird skin eating disease.”
I get ya. There are things we want to do and there are things we have to do. Your homework last time should have helped you get clearer on both of those. This next exercise will help you get clearer still.
Go get three sheets of paper, and something to write with.
Got it? Good.
You are about to make the most succinct to-do list you’ve probably ever made in your life.
THE ABSOLUTE-MUST-DO LIST
On your first sheet of paper, list your absolute-must-do’s.
Absolute-must-do’s (AMDs) are the things that keep you out of jail, a roof over your head, food in the fridge, clothes on your back and prevent your family from getting typhoid. These are the essential things one must do for basic human survival. THAT IS ALL THAT GOES ON THIS LIST.
- work for income whether that’s a job, your own business or both
- pay the bills
- clean the house
- feed yourself, the kids, the spouse and the cat
Sitting on the school council is NOT an absolute-must-do. Mowing the lawn is NOT an absolute-must-do.
THE BEST-YOU-CAN-BE LIST
Divide the next sheet of paper into thirds. On this list are the things you do (or should do) that make you a better human being, the things that keep you physically fit and mentally sane, the things that keep you functioning at your physical and mental optimum.
- For your health: Doctors appointments; working out; running; meditation; yoga; walks in the park or at the beach; reading for pleasure. Put whatever it is that lowers your blood pressure and relaxes your brain on your list. I happen to knit and enjoy playing with my kittens.
- For your education: Reading for knowledge or enlightenment, online or classroom courses.
- For your confidence: If you look your best, you’ll feel your best so you can live your best. List your grooming to-dos. Shaving, makeup, going to the stylist; mani-pedis whether you do them yourself or go to a salon; clothes shopping and laundry.
Toxic people are dangerous. They bring you down with criticism of you and others, with a constant stream of drama or just a general bad attitude toward life and people. You are allowed, encouraged even, to limit or break off contact with anyone who makes you clench your jaw or fists, anyone who makes you anxious or makes you want to stick a sharp object in your eye. I don’t care who those people are. Yes, even family – especially family. Don’t let anyone guilt you into maintaining a relationship just because you share DNA with that person. Choose wisely the people you spend time with.[/tweetherder] Not only are you giving them time when you’re with them, how they make you feel can affect the rest of your day, week, month, LIFE!
THE RELATIONSHIP LIST
Move to your third sheet of paper now. At the top of it, list the people who you want to maintain a close relationship with. Suggestions are: your kids, spouse, parents, siblings, best friends. Just because someone is at the top of my list, doesn’t mean they should be at the top of yours. If you don’t get along with a family member, you have permission to leave them off the list. (See the sidebar ~~>)
Further down your third sheet, make a list of people you enjoy – whether they inspire you, mentor you, make you laugh or just get you as a person.
YOUR TRINITY OF TIME
Those three lists are all the time uses you should be operating with. I promise you that if you focus on the three lists you just made:
- You’ll have all the time and more you’ll need to start a business.
- Your life will be calmer.
- Your mind will be clearer, freeing you to focus brain power where you need it.
Your homework: For the next few weeks, I want you to pay extremely close attention to your daily activities and tasks. Your mission is to limit to-dos that fit into those three segments of time as much as possible. If something doesn’t fit in the Trinity of Time, seriously think about why you’re spending time on that activity at all.
More on time management to come.
Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of. ~ Benjamin Franklin
Got more time concerns? Got wisdom to share? I want to hear it in the comments below.
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