Feeling empowered, well-rested and resourced is the most efficient way to get anything done. Yet, in today’s society, we still operate in our lives and in our career’s racing the clock. What if you consciously learnt how to redefine your relationship with time and in doing so, added ‘lost-time’ back into every single day?
“Time is your most precious resource, in fact, every single day, we are spending non-refundable time. It is important that we begin to shift our mindset from ‘busy being the best’ and begin optimizing our time” Vikki Louise
Are your efforts to be more productive and your goal to finally stop wasting time rooted in rich coherent soil or are they continually falling flat, because you’re simply trying to ‘make it’?
We have been taught from a very young age that our output, and specifically ‘doing more’, yields applause and accolades. It began with how we were raised – usually being praised for doing deeds that were worthy of reward – ‘only after the work. It likely continued in early Grade School, and then through High School, where our worthiness was based on our ability to get good grades. Growing up chasing perfection, success and having taken on the ‘excessive workload culture’ as a society, to essentially prove our worthiness. Every single one of us was born worthy – we do not need to prove ourselves.
As Vikki Louise points out, rest too is only enjoyed as an earned reward for the work and results we have produced:
“You’ve been taught that vacation and rest are earned, a reward, thanks to the outdated factory mindset and productivity obsessed culture you were raised in. So you double down before taking time off which leaves you exhausted, spending vacation on recovery.”
I recently sat down with Time and Productivity Coach, Vikki Louise and asked her to share her favorite ‘Time Hacking’ steps. Vikki innovates outdated time management systems and tools that have workers merely ‘getting by’ in their 40 hour work week. Time Hackers is her lifetime access program, now available for Corporate companies to boost their teams productivity in less time, and support stressed out CEOs and employees to rest, and live more, without the guilt.
Here is what she had to say:
Number One: Stop talking about NOT having enough time.
“We want to get out of these conversations. As you speak about your lack of time, your stress and anxiety elevates. This leaves you distracted from the task you actually wanted to complete and wasting time over and over again.
Simply notice when this happens. Catch yourself and begin re-writing the way you think about time.”
Number Two: Think carefully about the questions you ask your brain.
Your brain will answer any question you ask it. And that’s why it’s so important to choose questions that direct your brain on purpose.
Instead of saying things like:
‘Why don’t I have enough time?’ TRY ‘What is something that I always make time for?’
‘Why am I always behind?’ TRY ‘How did I make it happen the last time I was ahead?’
‘Why am I so bad at sticking to the plan?’ TRY ‘What is one thing I can commit to getting done today?’
Stop talking about why there is not enough time, and move away from trying to change what hasn’t worked for you in the past. Instead, start asking empowering questions that move you into clear responsibility for what you can complete in a nourishing way right now.
Number Three: Step away from the too-much-to-do story.
Saying you have “too much to do” is just another way your brain is saying ‘there is not enough time”
Vikki calls this an ‘instant overwhelm generator’. It’s like putting coins in an ‘overwhelm-token-machine’ and getting paid out. Every person that says this sentence experiences overwhelm. It makes sense, really.
When you tell yourself you have too much to do, your brain and nervous system, hard-wired to protect you, take that as a signal that you cannot sustain what is in front of you. It interprets the input as ‘dangerous’ and shuts you down, for protection.
Number Four: Drop what happened or didn’t in the past.
When you are spending precious time today, shaming yourself for what you didin’t do yesterday, you spin in a cycle of doubt and disempowering thoughts, feelings and actions.
Ruminating on the past only leaves you with one guaranteed result – more time wasted.
The antidote to losing time is to rethink your relationship with it.
The latest time saving tools, apps, calendars and diaries are often not the key to changing your life, for some they work, for others they simply give you more to do and think about every day! There is nothing that will give you back something that is non-refundable, and only you have the power to take control of your mind, of how you spend your time, and of how you live your life.
Let 2023 be the year that you do exactly that.