I am super busy, maybe you are too! I feel like we are all drowning in todos and regrets. But there is one thing that helped more than any other in my time management journey… here is my best tip for how to stay sane and take back your time!
please note :: I often recommend resources, some I receive an affiliate commission for at no additional cost to you! check out my policies here
My Best Time Mangament Tip, In Case You Want To Hear It And Leave
Just say no.
There you go, you are set!
But for the rest of you who need real help, here is a bit more background and a free worksheet to manage your time!
Just Cram More In There
My old method of doing time management was just to cram more and more into a day, week or year and then fail at everything.
When we adopted our kids, I thought I could keep up my 50 hour a week work life, manage three kids, and still be okay.
For a year I raced from work to school to doctors appointments to the vet to work…
And then I realized that there really are only 24 hours in a day and that I wasn't actually getting it all done, let alone doing it well.
So I started cutting things out. I let my marketing clients leave via attrition and (the worst) stopped writing books with my marketing besty. I stopped coaching other business owners and focused on my blogging and videos.
Now 5 years in I feel like I am finally ready to come out publicly and and state what made that all possible!
Saying no to almost everything!
I love this video from the Netflix show “Dead To Me” … warning, cursing at the end!
No, I can't spend one morning a week at my kids school, make brownies for the bake sale, take your kid to practice, talk to the other mommies at the games (seriously, cruising Facebook on my phone IS kinda my job…:)
No, I don't want to publish your guest post on my blog I have been working on for over 10 years, do an affiliate launch, Facebook lives, Instagram, and a million other things that everyone says are MUST DOS!
Dang, this is turning dark and gloomy, but really saying no to so much has allowed me to say yes to so many things that I REALLY WANT TO DO!
- Yes, to full time blogging and making videos
- Yes, to taking my Mother In Law to lots of doctors appointment
- Yes, to being there for my friends when they need me
- Yes, to spending time with my Dads when they are in Florida
- Yes, to taking days at a time to go with my kids to sporting events
- Yes, to spending an afternoon scavenging at thrift stores
- Yes, to spending hours junk journalling or learning about essential oils or marketing
Saying Yes Worksheet
Okay, now comes the hard, reflective part! What are the things you want to say yes to?
Now, please know that you will feel like some of yours are DUMB! How could “Starbucks Everyday” be an okay yes for me? If you love Starbucks ROCK IT!
If you love climbing, hanging out on Facebook, knitting, volunteering at your kids school, lunch with friends, writing, reading, drawing, napping, or ANYTHING ELSE, write down your loves!
Yes To Family and Friends
If you are wondering what counts as family or friends, it counts! Could be your Mom, son, dog, alligator, besty or even a mentor or mentee who is more than a work colleague. YOU get to pick who your family and friends are.
Then decide what parts of that are important. To me stopping ANYTHING I am doing to listen to my kids talk is important. Now, they have boundaries, but I shut off the TV, mute the video, get off of Facebook, and stop crafting anytime they want to talk (they are teens and tweens so they may not always be so interested in talking to Mom, I am taking advantage of my time now!)
Yes To Work
It may surprise you to know that I count a trip to Joanns Fabric as work time! I am doing videos and blog posts about my adult crafts on my second blog and so dinking around in Joanns counts as work!
Yours may be research (whatever that looks like) or meeting with clients, or writing. If you have a hard time narrowing this down, please check out this post… What Are 3 Things You Like To Do? – Finally Focus for Creative Entrepreneurs
Yes To You
Because most of us are women, somewhere along the line we decided that everyone else was more important than us! Our kids need us, our parents need us, our pets, friends, clients, school, even the damn neighbors need us more than we need us!
So this is the place just for you… what do you like to do? It could involve one of the other categories or be only for you. Maybe it is training or eating right, learning to cook or skydive, traveling, going to conferences, eating out, reading, collecting knick knacks. Doesn't matter what it is, there are no wrong “you” things!
#1 Time Management Tip Wrapup
My hope for you is that you will spend your days doing things you love. That you DO take the time to write down all the things that make you happy and then religiously guard your time to include only those things that YOU want to do and say NO to anything else!
One last thing, least you think all of my “yesses” are sunshine and roses. My Mom In Law is struggling with memory loss and so many of my yesses right now are taking her to a slew of doctors.
OF COURSE, I would rather be doing marketing than sitting in a waiting room, but I would rather be there for her while she is scared more than that!
Promise me you will do this today! Lock yourself in the bathroom and hang a sign saying “digestive issues” if you have to, but really, print out the worksheet and take the time today to figure out your yesses!