Can one hour of time be more valuable than another?
This was a question posed in an advanced training on time I attended earlier this year.
So, if that is true, how can we increase the value of our time?
In one word?
The quantity and quality of your actions increases or decreases the value of your time.
Knowing that, here are three things you can do to increase the value of your time:
1) Raise Consciousness
Become aware of how you’re spending your time.
Pick a method that is simple and easy for you to follow through on, and start tracking. Carry around a pen and paper with you throughout the day to jot down your activities, or perhaps track your time in an online calendar, like Google calendar.
Make a decision about how you’re going to spend your time.
Start with clarifying what your top 5 priorities are (i.e., Health, Family, Friends, Physical Environment, Work, etc.) and what your top 3-5 priorities are within those priorities (i.e., Health –> Mental Health, Sleep, Food, Downtime, etc.). Organize your priorities from most to least important in terms of what gets your time first.
Then start with just one day, and take it one day at a time. You can build up to weekly and monthly planning as time goes on.
Plan WHEN your priorities will happen. How much time does each priority get out of the 168 hours in your week?
Give those activities space in your calendar – a TIME they are happening that is realistic for you.
When you go to do it, acknowledge that you’re not going to feel like doing it.
Plan on not feeling like it.
And then, do it whether you feel like it or not.
Because “I don’t feel like it” is the one sentence that robs people of their dreams.
We feel like having our dreams in the long-term, but we don’t feel like doing it right now.
But here’s the truth…
Most things that are great in the long-term suck in the short-term.
And, maybe that’s the point. Maybe going through that is the work that creates the person that gets that result.
When you’re doing something important…something that matters…you’re not going to feel like it most of the time.
When you commit to doing it, all of the stress, doubt, confusion, and overwhelm is going to come up.
You’re not going to feel like doing it. You’re going to feel like doing a million other things in that moment.
But, that’s not a good reason not to do it.
What if your expectation was that you will be uncomfortable?
Know that you will be uncomfortable, and do it anyway.
Just go do it.
Don’t expect anyone to acknowledge that you are doing important work in the world. It won’t happen.
(And by work – I’m talking any kind of work! Whether that is the work of motherhood or other work you do in the world.)
Acknowledge yourself, for yourself, and be willing to do the work that matters to you even when no one else is listening. That’s what creates value.
And one last thing my friends…
When it comes to planning your time, plan all of your rest and relaxation FIRST – and make it non-negotiable.
This prepares you for the hours when you are providing the highest level of contribution.
One of my coaches once told me that rest and relaxation is so important that she recommends we do that first.
Such a different perspective than the “work first, play later” mentality we can have, right?!
But, there will always be work to do (and that’s a good thing!).
Rest and relaxation are important, too.
Schedule those FIRST.