October 12, 2011

Oh Time, Where Art Thou?


I’ve always prided myself on having killer time management skills. I love to use lists, calendars, and basically any other tool to help me in my somewhat-neurotic pursuit of discipline. I start off listing everything I want to accomplish: in life, that week, that day. Then, I try to figure out how much time each activity is going to take me.

Inevitably, I always land myself 80 hours’ worth of work, 40 hours’ worth of social activities, 15 hours’ worth of cooking/cleaning/grocery shopping/being a wife, and about 5 hours of working out per week. That leaves only about 28 hours for sleeping, relaxing, and personal hygiene per week.

Yeah, like THAT’S gonna happen!

When I look at my schedule and start to hyperventilate, worry kicks in. Will I ever finish X? Will Y ever happen? How will I manage Z? Oh, and in the midst of all of these things that I’m juggling right now, at this moment, HOW IN THE WORLD WILL I EVER ACHIEVE ANY OF MY LONG-TERM GOALS? I mean, I only want to get in shape, eat better, be a better wife, spend quality time with God, and you know, become a published novelist. No biggie.

Gulp.

It’s really hard to remember that, in the midst of it all, God has a plan for me. He doesn’t want me to live a frazzled life. Yes, achieving my dreams will take discipline, but it also will take a lot of prayer and prioritization (darn, couldn’t think of a 3rd P word…would have made for some great alliteration!).

If I look at my goals and all that I have to accomplish, there are ways to cut some of it out. Maybe it’s OK to ask my husband to go to the grocery store or run that errand. Maybe it’s OK if we don’t have an amazing meal every night – leftovers are great! Maybe it’s OK if I’m not the amazing party hostess/domestic goddess I long to be. And maybe it’s OK to work out 3 times a week instead of 4.

Then again, there are some things that I wouldn’t give up, things like time with God, my husband, my family, and my friends. Things like writing a novel this year.

Questions for You: Do you ever feel overwhelmed with all that you have to do? Have you found great ways to manage your time? Please share!

6 comments:

  1. Answer #1: Absolutely! Hahaha! Just posted a post with a similar perspective of limited time, unlimited work to be done. :-)

    Answer #2: Managing and prioritizing tasks. What do you want to do? What needs to get done? What can wait to get done? What are you going to label "need" vs "want" to give yourself room to move it higher on the list.

    Looking forward to seeing how you move forward with writing, Lindsay!!

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  2. Thanks, Tony! I totally agree--distinguishing the wants from the needs is crucial in time management and prioritization!

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  3. I often feel overwhelmed... like you I want to do it all...I want to be Supermom, Superwife, SuperChristian and Superwriter all at the same time, oh and Supersister, Superfriend, Superhousekeeper and the list goes on.
    What God has been showing me is that all I have to do is be faithful to him and he will bless my endeavors.
    I am a work in progress, slowly learning to release my control issues to God and allow him to control my schedule.
    Each morning I pray He directs my day and helps me prioritize. I am finding peace in not getting everything checked off my list. The main things are spending time with God and my family, after that whatever gets done is bonus (though a messy house stresses me out. I have to have it at least somewhat clean, if not immaculate like I prefer).
    My working out has taken the back seat right now, but that's okay, winters coming up!

    The scripture that keeps me focused is Matt 6:33, "Seek FIRST the kingdom of God and HIS righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you."

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  4. Thanks for your thoughts, TC! What a great reminder--keep God first, and the rest will be given to you as well.

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  5. If you really need another p, I find that punting works well for me in a pinch.

    Also, make sure you don't skimp on the personal hygiene thing. Your friends may start making excuses for not coming around. It will give you more alone time but I'm not sure that's what you have in mind.

    Love,
    Dad

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