Are You Managing Time or is Time Managing You?
According to Marcia Wieder in her book entitled Doing Less and Having More, “the single biggest contributor to stress, or lack of ease in our life, is time. She goes on to talk about people who feel they need to work more to have the money they need, but then find they do not have the time to enjoy their life. Being overworked, over-scheduled, over-committed just adds to our stress. It can feel as if you are a hamster on a wheel – constantly trying to catch up.
Do you find that you feel stress when you are not doing anything because you feel you should be doing something? I know I do! I begin to feel guilty for sitting down, doing absolutely nothing even for a moment. Wieder states that we need to shift in our relationship with time. To make the most of time you need to actually be experiencing life and the way to do this is by being present in the moment where you are.
As I was reading her book preparing for this month’s blog, I was also on hold with my internet company and after half an hour on hold they hung up on me. Well – what a waste of my precious time, but the problem was not solved so I phoned them back and alas the same thing occurred again. At this point I figured that maybe I should stop and enjoy the fact that I was reading in a beautiful quarry, beside a beautiful lake, listening to the waves and to just turn off the phone and be present and not worry about the issues as they could wait. So, I let the frustration and stress go and was still and just let the beauty of nature work its magic for my soul.
To truly experience quality of life we need to do less instead of trying to figure out how to schedule everything in. Instead of saying where can I fit this in my calendar, say why am I doing this, and do I want to be doing this? Begin to cut out things that don’t really matter to you and cherish some downtime. Are you over-scheduling yourself as a way of trying to prove your worth to other people?
One way to manage time is to manage our technology use. Work can be done from anywhere, anytime so you will have to decide what your work hours will be and tell people what your schedule will be and after that shut technology down. Then stop and look at your life and see what makes you tick. What is your rhythm? Begin to live in the “now.” Many people are recognizing the health benefits of the practice known as “mindfulness,” which is actually the practice of “being in the now.” As Wieder states, “…all I really need to do for ease is to get still, get present, and realize that where I am is the perfect place to be.”
BE HERE NOW!
Many great authors have written about practicing mindfulness or as Wieder calls it, “being in the now.” So, I won’t go into it other than to say that whatever you are doing, notice what your five senses are telling you in the moment. Whenever you notice your mind wandering off, gently bring it back to what is right where you are in that moment. You can put reminder notes around your house or work space as gentle reminders to stay present. For example, “Be here now!”In order live from a place of passion, with the time allotted to us each day, you will need to learn to say no to things that don’t ignite your passion. You have the choice on whether to accept or gracefully decline a task. Begin to step back from the rat-race and keep life simple.
What is your relationship with time? Are you over-scheduled and stressed? Are you able to enjoy moments of leisure or do they make you feel guilty? Most times I find that I am not living in the moment but am rushing around frantically helping others while getting behind on my own responsibilities. I need this gentle reminder just as much as you may need it. Live life in the now, from your passion and not just because you think you have to do whatever is asked of you.