One of the biggest challenges, with regards to time management, is trying to fit too many things into our day. We have great intentions, planning to spend 8 productive hours on our professional life, eat three healthy meals with five servings of fruits and veggies, work-out for an hour, mediate, read or study in an area we are working on, spend quality time with family and friends, oh yeah – we’re supposed to sleep too – when, you scream? Then on top of all the things that are important to you, we are constantly being asked to volunteer our time to help a good cause, a friend in need, a child’s school, or whatever it may be. Some of us (I’m working on it) have developed a very dangerous three-letter word default as a response to these queries – “yes”.
Have you ever had a friend ask you for help on something to which you quickly replied “yes” and less than 24 hours later dreaded the task that lay ahead? Aha! If you’re anything like me the word yes came out of your mouth long before you actually consciously processed what you already had on your plate, whether you really want to do whatever it may be and what would actually happen if you said no.
For the next week, I challenge you to an experiment. Anytime someone asks of you something that isn’t already in your schedule, respond with “let me check my calendar and I’ll let you know”. By asking for more time you will have the ability to objectively (not in front of the person) think about whether or not you want to do whatever it is and whether you honestly and realistically have the time to do it.
Let me know how it goes.