It’s Monday morning and you come into the week with a new goal: to manage your time better so you can get everything you need to get done, done.
You have the best intentions and have set yourself up for success planning the week ahead, you promise yourself that you are going to be more productive and it’s going to give you more time for yourself and your family this week.
And then it’s Friday, end of day and you look up from your haze of overwhelm and realize, damn… that didn’t work.
Your frustration hits and you find yourself wishing for a break from everything. If only you had just a second to come up for air and figure things out, you wouldn’t be stretched so thin.
So, you recommit to managing your time better - again.
Time Management is a Lie
The concept of time is what we blame everything on, we don’t have enough of it, it passes too quickly and we can’t create more of it.
So naturally, with the desire for more time, freedom and flexibility we look to time management to be the key to solving all of our problems.
There are a number of techniques you’ve probably tried from the Pomodoro Technique, batching similar tasks, or the 80/20 rule.
They all have things in common, each technique you find will force you to set goals, prioritize and plan so that you can stay focused and have the work-life balance you want.
I know you’ve tried all sorts of ways to better manage your time and you think to yourself, “I should be able to just stick with this!”
So why then, if we have all these great ways to manage our time - are we still struggling as business owners with not having enough time?
Because managing your time isn’t the problem.
Managing your mind so that you can manage your time is where you are missing the mark.
Having the expectation in place that you will automatically have the discipline to step away from a task when a timer goes off, shut down your work day when your time black says so, or follow through with your morning routine because it’s in your calendar is setting you up to fail. Learning techniques and having the discipline to use them are two different things.
Managing Your Mind to Manage Your Time
I’ll be honest, I utilize time blocking for myself and my clients. It’s one of the ways we reduce overwhelm, by physically reducing the amount of hours they are working, when they schedule and how much they schedule on their calendar.
But laying out a beautiful new schedule isn’t going to magically put them back in the driver's seat of their lives, no longer being controlled by their responsibilities.
It’s what we work through as they are implementing the new boundaries on their time and capacity…
The struggles they go through in their mind or feeling like they are failing if they work less, afraid of failing behind or missing out.
The thoughts they have about not being able to ever get where they want to go, or letting people down.
The stories they tell themselves about overworking being temporary as their worthiness is directly tied to how much they produce.
This is what time management techniques don’t teach you how to manage.
A time block for a morning routine isn’t going to physically peel you out of your bed and drive you to the gym in the morning. Having a deep understanding of why that time block is there, how it connects to the impact you have your eyes and heart locked on, is what works.
If you knew every time you went to the gym, sat in meditation, or had open space in your calendar - it would earn you another 7-figures in your company, you would do it.
You see, it’s easy to disregard the boundaries we set for ourselves when we don’t truly see the importance of why they are there or how they are connected to what we want.
If you want to manage your time, you have to manage your mind and build an understanding of the true importance of how you spend your time.
Bridge The Gap of Understanding
If you want to effectively manage your time and create more space in your schedule to have more freedom - start thinking of your calendar as boundaries.
And start bridging the gap to see how time for personal care, white space and less work actively contributes to your impact.
We do this with the power of perspective.
It’s easy to overload your calendar, say yes to too much and ignore the times we said we were going to take a break or do something for ourselves when you are viewing your choices through a short-term lens.
You have to convert your mind to making decisions for the long term.
You exercise daily because it helps you stay healthy, boosts your confidence and helps to regulate your emotions - but even knowing this it’s easy to skip. But if you take the long-term lens approach, exercising daily makes you more money, helps you live longer and helps you become more innovative and creative - all necessities for your business.
Seeing work-related tasks as the only thing that moves the needle forward in the business keeps you overworking and overloaded.
When you truly understand why you MUST manage your time, the techniques are just tools to support your mind instead of the other way around.
Start looking at what you add to your calendar and say yes to through a long-term lens, help your mind through the thoughts of inadequacy by asking the question:
How is this directly connected to the success I want for my business and my life?
And with this you start to build that understanding, make different choices and create more space for yourself and your family.
If you are struggling with overwhelm from the busyness of your business and know you need a break - The PowHER Retreat is now open for applications.
Come down to the beach and de-stress with other established business leaders. Spend a few days connecting with like minded women as you relax, restore and rejuvenate.