Of course we have all heard the saying “we all have the same 24 hours in a day.” And it is true. Time cannot be sped up, and you can’t lose time. What we can control is what we DO with our time each day, and boy there is a lot to be done.
Since February I have taken a hard look at my schedule and my time and had to be honest with myself. I had to ask hard questions like “is this a good use of my time?” or “is this adding any value to my life?” and “what is priority?” Because when it came down to it, I was wasting a lot of time on things that were not benefitting my life or getting me closer to my goals, and there is such beauty in life that should not be missed.
I want you to stop and think through a typical day for you. Just your average work day from beginning to end. What do you do first thing in the morning? Do you watch TV throughout the day? What do you do in your car to and from work? What do you do when you come home from work? Just think through your day and your life.
For me, I found that I was wasting time in a few big areas: waking up, playing on my phone scrolling through news feeds, and during my commute to and from work.
First of all, I noticed that from the time my alarm went off and I was actually semi-functioning and getting going took about 45 minutes. Now there is nothing wrong with taking your time in the morning, but when I looked honestly at myself, I knew that I could wake up faster and get going faster than I was. So, that is one thing I have been working on, actually getting out of bed and getting going faster in the morning so I can start my routine.
The next thing was my phone and the scrolling through news feeds on Facebook and Instagram. Before you put up a defense, hear me out. I use social media every single day, it’s how I can connect with people, how I grow my business and a huge platform for me to encourage and inspire others. My problem with it was when I was mindlessly scrolling through feeds, clicking on videos and links that added absolutely no value to my life. It has actually fueled me more to put out things of value to encourage others in their lives. Now I set a timer or tell myself I only have 5 minutes to scroll and then I have to work and do my thing.
The last area that I noticed I could be using my time more wisely was in the car. I love music, but I honestly hate the radio. I don’t like listening to commercials and songs I didn’t care for were always popping up and I would have to change the station. So what I did was start listening to inspirational messages, trainings, and sermons while I drove to and from work. I absolutely LOVE it, I can’t even tell you. I don’t miss the radio one bit, and I have learned volumes of knowledge for free while driving to and from work.
These were the areas of my life that I found I was wasting time that could be spent more valuably. They may and probably will look different in your own life. For some it may be TV or video games. For others it might be doing meaningless tasks that just waste time. Others it might be gossip.
Whatever the case, I challenge you to really be honest with yourself and examine your day. See if you notice any areas that take up time where you could be spending it elsewhere. One activity you can do to really see how much time you spend on one thing is to track it. Grab a notepad and carry it with you for a few days and write down the start time and end time you do an activity throughout the day, and add it up at the end. It can be eye opening!
So let’s hear from you, what’s your biggest time waster right now? How can you convert it into a time saver?