How can you find time when it is constantly slipping away?
I like to call the holes where your time disappears through “time traps.” They are activities that literally eat up your time but otherwise don’t benefit you. Or, maybe it feels like they do, but it’s not the best use of your time.
Time traps are tricky because they can appear harmless and even relaxing but, when entered into, they wreck havoc on your real wants and even your energy. An activity to help you ‘just unwind’ can suddenly end up eating up so much time that you don’t get other things done. Then you're rushing around to get those other things done, get exhausted and then need to 'just unwind.'
Whatever the time traps may be in your life, you can figure out what they are. There is no right or wrong and all activities are innocent until proven guilty. For now, track your time for the next week and see where you are spending it. Include everything - sleep, eating, work, exercise, TV, etc. You can track this easily through online methods -- Chronos (phone app) and RescueTime (laptop) are two I would recommend. Pen and paper tracking is just as effective too. (Quick tip here - don't take more than a few minutes deciding what to do...otherwise, you'll go from time track to time trap!)
There is no judgment on how your time is being spent because how you spend your time is unique to you. And I promise not to collect your report next week. This is for you to have a visual of your life in the context of time. Make this a fun challenge for yourself.
What would you bet are the three activities eating up your time? Write those down now and then see if you're right at the end of the week. Once you have a clearer vision of your traps, we'll discuss how to patch them so you can reclaim your time.
To A Life Beyond Measure,
The Life Engineer
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