I often have a love-hate relationship with time. Never enough. Can’t save it. Runs out. My “to do” lists have shortened over the years, but I struggle to accomplish what I put on paper. This time challenge affects another life objective – balance. How do I accomplish all I set out before me AND experience self-care?
Lists help me to feel accomplished in my daily tasks and to stay organized. Paper lists get checked off and then thrown away. Spreadsheets can be tedious to update. Calendar notations get an “X” when a task is done. My computer calendar (Google) displays across platforms to any device; notifications advise me of appointments. I finally figured out a way to combine the best of all of them.
My areas of Life focus fall into five major categories: Spirituality, Home, Writing/Working, Creativity/Art, and Relationships. I also have time designated for the “Space Between” major categories and end of day reading. A nod toward balance. Each category is color-coded for easy identification on my phone or computer. The colors and a set time serve as a welcome structure that allows me to dedicate time each day to things that matter to me AND achieve mental balance. Most categories are scheduled for every day of the week, while having flexibility within each allotted timeframe to prioritize tasks.
Right now, I’m in the “Space Between” (a gray area). We had an early dinner, so my writing was interrupted and delayed for a few moments. Next comes “Relationships” (lilac) when we’ll watch a binge series or a livestream college volleyball game my granddaughter plays in tonight. Sunday’s holiday lunch with family is in red.
This new system gives me permission to pace myself through all my many interests. Today I’ll do what I can in the time I have. Tomorrow, I’ll do a bit more. The schedule helps me stay focused and progress. Each day I’ll fully utilize the time given to me and do so with balance and serenity. It’s working already!