I once was an over-achiever. Don’t worry, I don’t have time for that anymore. But I used to do everything. In high school I was in leadership roles for 3 different clubs, an active member of multiple sports teams, and took on a slew of unnecessary extra curricular activities. One such thing was called RYLA. It was a youth leadership camp sponsored by the Rotary Club. My senior year I was selected to be one of the camp organizers and leaders. The night before the camp was to begin, our sponsors went around and told each person why they had been selected. Some people were selected for their fun vivacious personalities, others for their sense of humor. I sat there waiting to hear something great about me. Why was I chosen? Because I was busy. I distinctly remember this gentlemen saying he picked me because busy people get things done. (Not quite what I was hoping to hear!)
I’ve since thought of that on multiple occasions. On the days that I am limited on my time, I make sure to prioritize and I get a lot done. If I don’t have much that needs done, then I typically don’t get anything done. This isn’t too say you have to pack your day with unnecessary things in order to be productive. What I am saying is you have to prioritize and organize.
Organize. It’s an ugly word. I don’t particularly like it. I don’t like the word, and I don’t like what it tells me to do. In my mind I tell myself a story about why I don’t organize. I don’t want to be one of THOSE moms…. But let’s be honest. The real reason I don’t work to get organized is the same reason I have a hard time setting goals for myself. I don’t like running the risk of being disappointed by my failure to live up to my own expectations.
If somebody else has expectations for me,say like my mom, I can choose to ignore them. I can rightfully say that other’s expectations for me shouldn’t rule how I live. BUT, if I set priorities for myself, that I think are important, that I think are useful, that I think will help me be happier, and I don’t follow through, what does that say about me? Am I self sabotaging? Did I ever care about that goal? Am I committed to myself?
No two people will answer these questions the same way. The answer I can give you, is that either you run your day or your day will run you. Be in control of how you spend your time, and you will find that you have more time to spend.