Do you ever feel like “time is just getting away from you?” It’s pretty common rhetoric in our fast paced world today. It seems that there are always people, situations, and other unplanned events that incessantly demand our attention, so it’s easy to justify losing time. Yet at the same time, how many people reflect back on their life at the end of it and are satisfied with the idea that their life “just got away from them?”
It’s a sobering thought to be sure, but the truth is that it doesn’t need to be that way. Time only gets away from us if we let it. When we do not schedule our time with intention, we lose those precious hours! They vaporize before our very eyes, and we usually have no idea what happened to them.
From a business and sales perspective, have you ever thought about how much your lost time costs you? Do the math, and you may find it enlightening. Lost time is time that has been spent on everything except the things that move you toward your goals. How many appointments go unmade? How many sales conversations are left unhad?
All the things that pull you away from your intentional schedule are costing you – literally – thousands of dollars! Not to mention thet distractions that take time away from your family, which we know is short and precious.
Your schedule needs to be intentional. So what does an intentional schedule look like?
Some may find my methods of schedule planning to be backwards from the norm. Most of us schedule our time by putting our work in first, and we fit our life in around our work. I do not recommend this – life is about more than your work! Schedule your life the way YOU want to and fit your work in around your life.
So here are 5 things you need to do NOW to intentionally schedule your life:
- Schedule a year at a time. Yes – the whole year. We’re in the month of February now, so the vast majority of the year can still be intentionally scheduled. Get a year at a glance type of calendar, and start filling it up!
- Fill in the days you plan to be off FIRST, namely, your vacation days. If you don’t plan for your time off, you’ll never get any. All the things that demand your attention will win your desired time off if you don’t have something scheduled in place.
- When you get down to daily specifics, fill in where you will address your mental and physical health. Be specific. If you want to schedule exercise, name the type, place, and time. Allow for warm up, cool down, and showering afterward. If you don’t take care of yourself, you can’t take care of anyone – or anything – else!
- Fill in the time you plan to spend with your loved ones and family next. Ironically, this is the most important time of our lives, but it’s also the first time to get sucked up into the vortex of endless work demands. Be deliberate and protective of your family time. Keep in mind that sometimes things come up last minute with families and there needs to be a little flexibility allowed for this time as well.
- Finally, fill in your daily schedule. First, plan how you want to END your day. Have a planned end time to your day so that you can close down the day with intention. Then, after you have run your numbers for work to determine the number of calls you need to make and the number of appointments you need to set, you can intentionally schedule that time.
How much more productive will your work time be when you’ve intentionally set it in to your calendar? How much more relaxing will your personal time be? And how much less guilt will you feel during your family time because you’re not addressing work?
You’ll be amazed at how much time you find you have when you intentionally schedule it. Organize your life so you can command it – otherwise, you’ll lose it.