As we begin a New Year, I thought it would be a nice idea to have a Guest Blogger for our first two posts in 2013 and for the theme to be something that isn’t exercise or diet based. My wife Sarah is a qualified Life Coach and so I asked her to come up with something that she felt would be relevant, and this is what she has for you………..
So often it feels as though time is something we have no control over and don’t have enough of. In the current economic climate it seems like we have even less of it as many of us are forced to work longer hours and can no longer afford to buy the things that help us to save time, such as take away meals or a cleaner.
It can certainly feel as though we don’t have enough time for the nice things in life as we struggle to get through never ending to do lists. But is it possible to organise our lives differently so that we do more of the stuff we like and less of the stuff we don’t?
A good starting point is to look at your core values – those are the things that matter to you above everything else. These might for example be: health and well being, relationships with family and friends, taking time out to pursue your hobbies and relax, contributing to your community. Once you have identified these values, think of them as a light that you hold everything else up to. Take spending hours doing internet shopping for things you usually end up sending back anyway. Is it in line with your core values? No? Then stop doing it! Instead take yourself out for a run (Health core value) or pop over to a friend’s house for a chat for half an hour (Relationship core value).
Of course there are boring things that we all have to do, no matter what our core values, like food shopping, cleaning etc. But can you find a way to do these more efficiently? Is it worth your while having a four week menu planner with an attached shopping list to cut down time? Or maybe you build up a set of store cupboard easy- peesy –no washing up- meals (my favourite one is chucking a tin of crab meat, some coriander and rocket into egg noodles) and instead of cooking spend the evening going for a run, or get out your James Bond car kit (yes, really, my husband’s hobby!).
When you are about to spend money also ask yourself if what you are buying is in line with your core value. If it’s a dress that’s going to make you feel fabulous then it can certainly improve your sense of well being, but if it’s just another frock to squeeze onto your overcrowded clothes rail you might be better off saving your pennies and using them to do something that’s in line with your core values.
Be mindful about how you direct your energy. Is spending half an hour slagging off a colleague really a good use of your time? Instead put your energies into finishing off a report so that you can leave the office half an hour earlier and pop in to see an elderly neighbour who lives alone. For much as we don’t like to think about it, we are not immortal and our time on this planet is not endless. When we recognise that on a minute to minute basis we make decisions that shape our experience of life, we can use our time much more wisely.
Please feel free to add your comments below if anything Sarah has said here strikes a chord with you and look out for Sarah’s second Blog Post next week. If you would like to contact Sarah directly then you can email her via our contact page