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June 7, 2020

Are you missing out on the good parts?

Do you feel like your life is passing you by and you’re missing the good parts?

We rush, rush, rush to that next destination, through all the tasks on our to-do list, from one thing to another with barely catching a breath or stopping to notice. We eat without tasting or enjoying our food. We spend time with our families, but we get distracted by thoughts about work. We go to work and feel guilty because we’re not spending time with the ones we love. We’re constantly in one place but not truly there because we’re thinking of other things.

How many times have you been in the middle of a conversation with someone, but you realized that you completely missed what they said because your mind is off somewhere else? We’re all guilty of it. The key is to become aware of it and to learn to pay attention to the moments as they’re happening.

I don’t know about you, but it seems like most people I know say that they never seem to have enough time. 

The truth is we all have the same amount of time. Twenty-four hours in a day or 1440 minutes or 86,400 seconds–depending on how you want to look at it. 

So, why do some people seem to make the most of their time while others may feel like they are constantly short on time and running late for everything?

The short answer is that it’s all about priorities. Often the things that we say we value the most may not be what we focus on in our daily lives. For example, we want to be healthier, exercise more, and spend more quality time with our families. Still, we forget to schedule these things into our calendars. 

As the saying goes, if it doesn’t get scheduled, it doesn’t get done—and then we keep saying we’ll do it TOMORROW.

Meredith Willson said it best: “You pile up enough tomorrows, and you’ll find you’ve collected a lot of empty yesterdays.”

Having been a wellness professional for over twenty years, people often tell me that they know that they should exercise and eat better. They will even tell me that it is imperative to them to improve their health. Still, when they start to talk about investing some time into themselves, they often change their tune and tell me that they don’t have time to fit it into their already busy lives. So, if this sounds like you, I invite you to take a little exploration with me.

How do you spend your time?

There are basic things that pretty much happen every day—sleeping, meals, showering or bathing, brushing your teeth, you know the drill.

So, how much time do you spend doing those things? If you sleep 8 hours a day, that still leaves about 16 hours for all the other stuff. Work might be 9 or 10 when you add in your commute. That still leaves 6 hours. 

If your first instinct is to cut yourself short on sleep so that you can get more done, I’d strongly suggest you look somewhere else to find more time. 

We all need about 7-8 hours of sleep for good health. 

When we deprive ourselves of sleep, we increase our chance for accidents, weight gain, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and the list goes on.

We could go through all of the other basics in our days. Still, I think the place to start is all those activities that begin innocently but end up becoming a time-suck in our day. For instance, you decide to check your email. Then, before you know it, you’re scrolling through social media, watching YouTube videos, or shopping online for a new gadget or outfit.

So, what can you do to be more productive, get the things done that you say you value, and not always feel like you’re “too busy” to live the life you desire?

It comes back to those priorities and figuring out WHAT is important to you and WHY it matters to you.

When you have a crystal-clear picture, it can be easier to focus on those things and not get lost in scrolling through your social media. 

Making sure that those non-negotiable things not only get on your calendar but they get done can be tricky at first. 

Our brains are programmed to avoid the “hard” stuff. For example, working out can seem so much harder to our brains than doing something fun like binge-watching Netflix or watching cat videos on YouTube.

Once you have your WHAT and your WHY, write them down a sticky note—heck, use a bunch of sticky notes in lots of fun colors. Then, place them where you will see them often: your bathroom mirror, refrigerator, desk at work, the steering wheel of your car. These visual reminders help when you feel your motivation lagging.

Then, go to your calendar. You can do this online or on paper. Still, the benefit of using an online calendar is that you can set up automatic reminders. Look at your week ahead. How many days can you fit in a workout? Do you need to move something else to do this–maybe skip a few episodes of your favorite show so you can get to bed earlier and fit in a morning workout? 

If you find it challenging to schedule time for yourself, come back to your WHAT and your WHY again. If your reasons aren’t big enough to get you to start making yourself a priority, maybe you need to go deeper into your WHY. 

You say you want to lose weight so you can feel better. Why do you want to feel better? Do you want to feel better in your clothing? Do you want to be more active with your partner? Do you want to run and play with your kids? 

You may need to dig a bit deeper here, but it makes prioritizing yourself so much easier once you find that meaningful WHY.

 

PS Whenever you’re ready… here are 3 ways I can help you make the shift from settling for the results you’re currently getting to really thriving in life.

 

  • Join other like-minded people who are taking control of their health in my Peace Run Yoga Facebook Group! Allow us to be a place to share ideas, get advice, and meet others who are on a health journey.

 

  • Join me for the JOY Detox. In October, I’m getting a group of amazing people together for 21 days to detox body and mind.