Go go go. The hustle and bustle lifestyle is what’s been hugely promoted the last few years, and while there’s definitely a time and place for that nonstop spirit, I’m here to tell you: we are not built for that for the long haul.
Many of us are balancing a side hustle with our day to day in addition to kids, spouses, homes, hobbies, etc. and I know, I know, we’re all out here trying to secure the bag, but what good is getting a bag if you never have the time to enjoy it? SLOW DOWN. Being intentional with how you spend your time and plan out your day is much more productive than being all over the place while still trying to strike off 50/11 tasks on your to-do lists, so here are a few ways that you can slow down but still get things done.
*GASP* What? Yes, do less my friend. Before you do anything, ask yourself: does this task/event/meeting help me in any way in the long-term? If not, put it the side and do the most important thing first. If you get to it, yay, but if not, you’ve still completed more important tasks that actually amount to something. Being busy and on the go all the time appears fun to the outside world but truth be told, it’s draining and not always for the best. Every person is different, but if I use myself as an example, do I really need to go to that blogger event, or meet up for coffee so a new person I don’t know can “pick my brain”? Not really, especially if I have client work that I need to finish or already have plans with my family. Taking back your schedule and filling your free time with things of value is one of the best thing you can do for yourself. Be intentional with who gets access to your time.
Sleep in when you need to
We live in a culture that promotes never going to bed in place of working. Um, hate to break it to you but you don’t get brownie points for being on “team no sleep” if you’re unproductive during the hours you need to be or make mistakes or neglect your family, friends or even yourself. What’s the point of staying up night after night if you’re going to need a nap mid-day (and if you can’t take one, you’re going to zone out in whatever you’re doing)? After a certain point, you need to turn things off and go to bed. This is not to say that you won’t ever have to sacrifice sleep for a project or person, but if you know you’ve missed out on a few nights of rest and you have a day where you can get in a few extra hours of sleep, DO IT. You need to rest regularly so that you can always be mentally prepared to tackle whatever the day may bring.
Regularly block out unplanned time in your calendar for yourself
Everyone needs a little quiet time, so 3-4 times a week, block out a little alone time (and put it in your calendar). Even if you can only have 30 minutes of alone time, schedule it in…and during that time, do nothing. I mean, have a cup of coffee, stare out the window, take a walk, or flip through a magazine. Whatever it is, just don’t plan it with anyone else and put your phone down. Sometimes you just need to be present with yourself to clear your head so that you can (efficiently) move forward with the rest of your tasks that day.
I know it’s said all of the time but disconnecting from our phones from time to time is needed, especially when it comes to social media. Many of us legitimately use our phones for work, but if we were to look at the screen time for a lot of people, we’d see that most of us are spending more time aimlessly scrolling on IG or Twitter vs working. Seriously, how many times have you found yourself going from platform to platform in a cycle until you looked up and see that you’ve missed out on accomplishing something because you’ve been too busy watching someone else live their lives. There are so many benefits that come with being unreachable, even if it’s just for an hour. Many of us blame not getting shit done because we don’t have enough time when in reality, we do, we just aren’t spending it wisely.
No one is expected to be perfect, but if you find yourself feeling down or overwhelmed because it doesn’t seem like you’re making the strides that you want for yourself, take a moment to look and see where you can make some adjustments (and slow down) so that you’re more intentional in how you handle your daily schedule and get more done.