“Not owning your day is like eating fast food for years. You don’t realize the consequences until it’s too late.” Liz Huber
Do you feel that you OWN your day? Do you get the things done that move you toward your dreams? Or do you stumble through your waking hours, muttering “Keep it together. Keep it together. Keep it together. ” like Eddie Murphy in “Bowfinger.”
Time-management is not the primary solution to apply to our sinking feeling that time is escaping us. If we also feel regret for dreams not realized, our dread is weighted with depression. Maybe even despair.
I’m going to bet that you have successfully dealt with schedules, goals, and deadlines before, and know how to get stuff done. But now, you just can’t get the engine revved to do those things that you have a yearning to do; maybe you wish you could finish the creative work you have stashed away.
But, clever you, you’ve managed to talk yourself out of it before you’ve started. Or, you’ve started, lost momentum and motivation, and quit. Over and over.
Well. As the name of this blog, is, “It’s Too Late to Quit….” Let’s reframe that.
Yes, you have stopped, but you have not quit! Secretly, you haven’t given up on the hope you might start up, again.
I know that, because you are reading this. Ha! Here are two pages from my book, “It’s Too Late to Quit” - messages that came to me in a dark time and helped me keep going. You can pin these to your mirror or pin to Pinterest.
To rise to the challenge of owning our day and taking control of our time, I am offering spiritual affirmations, followed by practical time management advice from experts. My last blog, about the challenges and rewards of BUILDING SELF-DISCIPLINE, also included affirmations to help connect us to our inner strength, our will, and our Light.
Affirmations are great ways to rewire our stinkin’ thinkin’. Those of us who overthink and worry, whose brains are a nervous stroll through a bad neighborhood, we need this. Affirmations only take a second. Okay, five seconds. Ten, at most!
It is so important to find new neural pathways, so we don’t continue to fall into the rut of our negative thinking. An affirmation is a thought. We affirm things all the time, often without thinking. And, sometimes what we’re affirming is negative or unhelpful.
“But the key with positive affirmations is to be intentional about what you’re affirming and do it consistently. The idea is that if thoughts create our reality, practicing good thoughts can help change our reality.” (Mary Hodges, Abundantly Being)
The first step is to tear off the stinking coat of the past, and recalibrate our connection to the Light/Source/Divine/God/Almighty. Why? That’s where Unconditional Love lives, and healing takes place.
So, are we feeling poised and ready to clear the obstacles to owning our day?
Do the mistakes and ghosts of the past still haunt you? Perhaps you’ve told yourself that you are not deserving of whatever it is you truly want, because of what happened? Let’s change that.
What does moving forward with your life look like? Do you feel that you have a purpose here on this planet? Do you feel in the flow of that?
When we strengthen our connection to our soul mission, we open our lives for more intuitive, spontaneous, right action.
SO! What’s your biggest anxiety around time?
I’ll go first. I worry that I will not have enough time. And then, guess what happens?
Let’s set aside the worry to focus our hearts, minds, and energy on being better time managers. One glorious day at a time.
As I promised up at the top, here are some helpful, practical strategies from EXPERTS for taking back control of your time and productivity. I’m certainly going to give them a whirl.
My particular weirdness around time-management has been termed “procrastiperfectionism” by Susan Ellis-Saller, the stellar creator of Spiritual Business Spotlight. So if you also procrastinate because you are obsessed with appearing perfect, I hold a special seat in the club for you.
My favorite t-shirt of all time:
TIME MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES:
- Select an item from your Bucket List that you really want to accomplish. Write down how good it is going to feel when you get it done. If you don’t have a Bucket List, here’s my blog "Why Your Bucket List Matters - Because YOU Do!".
- Write down all the tasks involved, all the goal posts you must reach, to accomplish one item on your Bucket List And list all of the challenges and obstacles you will have to overcome. Get a clear-eyed picture of how far you have to go.
You may feel a little weak in the knees. It’s really okay to feel all quivery, but you must fight the need to wait until the fear goes away. Just take the action.
For me to start my podcast, I actually had to find out what a podcast was! Talk about starting at ground zero! Ha! And I’m also one of those people who thinks I should know how to do something before I’ve even tried it.
- What’s the first task you will tackle around that one Bucket List item you have selected? Don’t overthink it. Pick something essential, doable, even tedious.
“The gist here is finding an easy pre-activity to start with, before going head-on into a challenge – subsequent activities can be more demanding, but it’s important to begin with something easy. This way, you’ll ease into a task, and be on the best possible way to tackle it right.” Marija Kojic , Dealing with Procrastination”
- Where’s the 30 minutes in your day you will set aside to devote to this task? Find a consistent time slot. BOOK IT.
Why it is essential that you build consistency? That you keep going, no matter how exhausted you feel? Let me share this page from my book, “It’s Too Late to Quit,” with a message that helped me enormously:
- You know this, but we all need reminding. Please grant yourself some peace and quiet. Turn off the phone, close the other tabs on your computer. If you find yourself deserting your dedicated 30 minutes to spin off into the black hole of scrolling and scanning, draw your attention gently back.
I say to myself, “Okay, Sheri. Stop. Just Stop.” And when I do manage to extract myself I say, “Good girl.” It’s weird, but helpful, like I’m training a puppy. Give yourself permission to speak out loud, and develop the voice of your loving, but tough coach.
- If you are still having a lot of problems settling in and getting this underway, I invite you to make friends with your resistence. My blog, Building Healthy Self-Discipline can help with that.
- Expand this task time to 45 minutes! Where do you find the additional 15 minutes?
- “Organize your daily list by priority, starting with what you must do (for example, this Bucket List task) and working down to what would be nice, but certainly not essential, to get done.” (Brian Tracy, “How to Take Control of your Time”
- Lay out all your clothes and have the coffee pot/blender ready to go, before you go to bed. In the morning, I pull on my workout clothes, and don’t change til I’ve done it.
- Plan your meals a week ahead. Cook every other day. Here’s a snippet from a great article, 15 Tips for Better Weekly Meal Planning:“Go with theme nights: Monday is pasta, Tuesday is fish, Wednesday is tacos. This doesn’t work for everyone, but it may be especially helpful for those with kids.”
- Say “Not now,” to people who want “just a little of your time” during the period you have set aside for your task. In general, you might review how often you allow for interruptions to take care of other people’s needs. (I’m NOT including your children, of course. However, I may be including your partner.) Here’s a fab article by Ryan Holiday, about the importance of saying, “No.”
- Peel 15 minutes off every hour of TV by recording and eliminating the commercials. (Well, duh.) An even better tactic is shaving off 30 minutes of viewing content on any of your devices.(Uh huh.)
- Try this: Limit email and other message reading for 15 minutes in the morning and evening. Did you know this? “Scrolling on social media can get addicting… According to Techjury, on average, people spend 2 hours and 24 minutes per day on Facebook, 40 minutes on YouTube, 30 minutes on Snapchat and 28 minutes on Instagram.” That’s from “Seven Ways to Limit Social Media Use.”
My mother forsook watching evening TV with the family for six years. After dinner she would slip up to the guest room to study for her college degree. We learned to clean up after ourselves. Our mama became a schoolteacher in her thirties with four children.
Sylvia Myers Willoughby set a great example for the rest of us. For another great example of not giving up, I’ve written about her bucket list wish. Her biggest dream was to have her own solo art show. (She did - at the age of 92!)
You can do this. We can do this. We can own our days.
Take these affirmations on, try the strategies, create time for the life you dream.
Be the non-quitter you are.
Oh, and BTW….
We are planning to host this free and fun webinar!
"Claiming your Marathon - Your Impossible Dream."
If you read my blog, you'll see some of the strategies we will discuss with guests:
- Marathoner Dr. Dean Goodman (still running distance in his 70's)
- Angel Lady film director Edgar Pablos
- Activist artist Daneeta Jackson of Planet Daneeta
- Triathlete, veteran, cancer champion, and health innovator Clayton Treska
- Plus more!
If you'd like to be kept in the loop and reserve a free place, email me your interest - firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for playing!
Onward with gratitude,
Here's a link to the book's Amazon page with 45 reader reviews. If you want a copy in paperback or Kindle, you can get it there. If you are flat broke, email me at email@example.com and we will work something out.