Monday, June 14, 2010

Over the last few days, I've spent some time with my friends who are all having the same challenge'”the race against time or "time management." Whether you are a lawyer, a fitness professional or an executive for oil & gas company, time is the like ‘the elusive lover'.. You can never get enough! Here are a few comments I heard over the last few days:

-- "I'm never able to get it all done."
-- "I can't figure out which "to-do" should be done first."
-- "It only takes 10 minutes."

My lawyer friend is multi-tasking all day long. He felt this was really effective in his quest to "beat the clock." To quote my friend, "it only takes 10 minutes to complete each task." When we took a look at the "it only takes 10 minutes" tasks and added them up, he was losing over an hour a day on items that could be delegated to someone else. What would you do with an extra hour per day?

We wear many hats and play many roles in our lives. It's very easy to get caught up in the "to-do" list and the requests of others. In my work with some clients, my goal is to help them have an 80/20 rule in their lives and businesses. 80% is their "ideal" life that they create and 20% is when "life happens." You know those days when you get sick, the kids are sick, the car breaks down, etc. For many of you, it's just the opposite. You're getting 20% of your time to steer your life the way you'd like and 80% is spent serving others needs and requests. I invite you to think about changing this if you want to live with passion and purpose in your life and business.

I used to be in that 80/20 situation (with 80% being determined by others) until I made a conscious choice to give myself permission to design a life that resembled more of what I wanted on a daily basis. Here's a few tips and solutions on how you can begin to take better control and win your race against time:

1.    What do you want? '“ This really throws me off base when I ask this question. Why? You believe that your life is not your own. You serve and take care of so many people. How could you possibly have what You really want? Take a look at all the areas of your life '“ self, spouse/partner, family, work/business, friends and community. How much time would you ideally like to spend in each of these areas? Remember the 80/20 rule.

2. Design Your "Ideal" Day '“ I work with take a blank calendar and begin to play around with the "what-ifs." Others play with different scenarios and come up with what works best for them based on what's most important.

3. Set up boundaries '“ It's essential that you set boundaries around your life. I have a boundary around the 4pm hour during the week. I typically reserve from 4pm on through the evening to be with my family. I also have a boundary around my day between 8:30 and 4pm Monday through Friday. I spend this time practicing my own self-care.

4. Get some help '“ A very wise, successful man once shared with me that "you can do it all but you can't do it all by yourself." Well said. This lesson has been one of the most valuable for me along the way. The act of delegation has been a key factor in helping me to have more of what I want in my life and less of what I don't. Here's a clue; Make a list of what you're really good at, enjoy doing and also produces income for you. These are the things that you need to hold on to. Take everything else and delegate it as soon a possible. The first 2 things I delegated in my business were bookkeeping and technology. I don't enjoy these and it's not an area of strength for me.

If you are serious about winning your race against time and having more of what you want in your day, I invite you to use these 4 steps I've shared with you.

I'm going to leave you today with a quote that feels just right at this moment. "How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives." ~Annie Dillard

Anything is possible. Everything is waiting for you.


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