36-days into 2016 and I’m pleased to report that both life and business are going well. I have much to be grateful for and a busy calendar to prove it. With all the good things going on I still have challenges just like you. My biggest challenge: dealing with a whole set of new pressing items to accomplish with an already busy calendar.
I’m getting married on April 1st this year and I’m beyond excited! So much to do, plan, and get ready for in anticipation of the big day. Amongst this big event, my fiancée Lacey is busier than I am overseeing a growing business and many employees. Let’s just say that a normally busy schedule, which also includes four children from our previous marriages ages 18, 16, 13 and 6, is bumping up to the edge of insanity.
So, why do I mention all this? It’s a good question and here’s why: life is busy. When it throws in a whole new set of situations and deadlines, the mindset and actions you take towards it will determine whether you’ll accomplish much or end up frustrated and possibly burned out.
Here are three unique ways to manage the complexities of a busy schedule without it paralyzing or taking the joy out of living.
#1: Schedule time off even if you think you shouldn’t. While most people think this is nuts, please stay with me, I’ll explain. I often find that when you are in a serious crunch mode, the best thing to do is take a 15 to 30-minute break at least once or twice throughout the day. Not only do you come back from the break refocused, you feel better and often work at a much faster pace. Some of the best ways I know to reboot include; taking a walk/run, listening to music, calling a friend or loved one, or enjoying a light meal or snack outside or away from my computer and work area.
Tony side note: Even with a crazy schedule and upcoming wedding day, Lacey and I are taking off for a full week for vacation at the end of this month, only four weeks before our wedding day! Yes, it may seem a bit odd, but we both know we will work harder at major priorities and deadlines related to work, wedding, and family, to insure that we enjoy the trip without guilt or worry.
#2: Give thanks at the beginning and end of each day. At the beginning of each day I grab a 3×5 note card and write down a list of things I’m grateful and appreciative for within my life. I look at the previous day’s card, and I copy it almost word for word. I keep the cards in my planner which is always with me.
In addition, at night as my head hits the pillow I run down a mental list of all the people in my life I am grateful and blessed to share, along with thanking God for making another day possible. You will be amazed at how much these two habits set up and end each day with an attitude of gratitude versus overwhelm and worry.
#3: Make your health a priority. While the spirit may seem willing, the flesh can sometimes be weak. We face two central challenges when under the gun:
- the temptation to skip meals or binge on crap at odd hours in the middle of the night
- short changing sleep or breaks
Admit it, we’ve all been guilty of one or both of these. It seems like a quick fix, but it can be disastrous.
Solution: Schedule breaks and down time on your daily calendar. A burned out mind and body actually uses more energy and often creates a viscous cycle, where excessive sugar, caffeine, and less sleep jump in to provide a quick fix. These appear to be okay and working well for a few days, but over time they negatively affect creativity, reaction time, moods, and make a person much more susceptible to illness or physical breakdown.
In conclusion, use these three tips to help you not only manage time better, but also enjoy the daily journey with less stress and greater enjoyment.