Have you ever watched your schedule fill up with a huge list of “have to’s” and no time left for fun?
Here are some time management tips to deal with your overbearing schedule, starting with the monthly page in your daily planner.
First identify and write in ONLY your “have-to-do” items. These are the things you REALLY have to do. If you find tons of things on your “have-to’s” list, go back and decide if each item is really a “want-to” or a valid “have-to”. Many of our “have-to’s” aren’t really so urgent that they all had to be done yesterday. At the same time, so many of us have such full schedules that we don’t allow enough time for making dinner, doing chores, grocery shopping, and so on. Writing things down on our monthly pages really helps us reorganize and actually remember those things that we think we won’t forget.
Secondly, plan to give yourself at least one day a week with some free time in it. After scheduling in as few “have-to’s” as you can, write in this personal FREE TIME.
Then review your schedule to see what other “have–to’s” you can combine at one time or get rid of!
Next, remember the things you need to do with your children, parents, spouse or friends. Here’s something I would like you all to try: schedule time once a week with each family member and maybe one friend. For example, I give my friends 3 hours of phone time each weekend.
* To review:
* #1 – Schedule your “have-to-do’s”.
* #2 – Schedule in FREE TIME and seriously, write in your planner, FREE TIME!
* #3 – Reassess your must do’s.
* #4 – Schedule in time needed for and with family and friends. Some examples could include softball practice, lessons of any sort, Starbucks, movies, driving kids to a friend’s house, chatting on the phone, or writing a note.
If you find your schedule rapidly filling up and your free time disappearing, then stop. Focus on where your time is going and how your week will pan out. What happens to many women is that we think we can do it all. We often don’t think to write down on our schedule that we need to cook dinner by 5:30, and end up planning something else during that time.
For example, if I schedule softball for one of the kids on Wednesday after school and a meeting Wednesday night, then I’ve used up the time normally spent doing housework, making dinner, or anything else that is normally done at this time. That doesn’t mean I don’t go to the game. It means that I have to figure out when I can take some extra time to do those things I didn’t do at home that afternoon, or else eat out. If I was going to the softball game instead of doing chores, I’d do my best to get up early that morning, shower and eat earlier that morning, and make an easy meal to put in the oven, or do some extra chores to catch up or move ahead of schedule. This way, when I NEEDED to leave, I could go without worrying about what wasn’t getting done.
Don’t let your schedule control you. You control your schedule!
If you liked these time management tips from The Busy Woman, please share and comment below.
©2002 Susie Glennan
All rights reserved.