How to Find More Time for Your Goals
Time. There never seems to be enough of it right? Between work, grocery shopping, picking up the kids from school, and so on, your to-do list can seem never-ending, leaving you with no time for the goals you want to accomplish. Have you ever heard of that saying, “You have the same number of hours in the day as Beyonce?” No shade to Beyonce, but I hate this saying. While it’s true that everyone has the same number of hours in the day, not everyone has the same resources or responsibilities and I imagine that Beyonce has a lot of help because of her resources (awesome for her, but we’re not Beyonce!). That’s why in this blog post, I’m going to give you actionable tips that can help you take your time back, no matter who you are or what you have on your plate.
HOW TO FIND MORE TIME FOR YOUR GOALS:
1. Focus on one goal. It can be easy to start dreaming about all of the goals you want to accomplish and the things you want to get done, but investing your energy in too many things will lead to decision overload and burnout. With everything you already have going on, let’s be real. It’s simply not realistic to create a ton of goals for yourself and expect you to achieve them all. When you find it difficult balancing all of these goals, you can be likely to give up on all of them. I know I have! Instead of trying to be Super Woman and do it all, focus on just one goal for the year. For example, you can focus on reading more, exercising, starting that side hustle you’ve been thinking about, saving money, etc. Whatever goals are running through your mind, remember to pick just one of them to focus on, not all of them
2. Write out your goal in quantifiable terms. When people begin goal-setting, it’s easy to think of a vague goal like reading more or exercising more. These are great goals but what will that actually look like in real life? Whatever goal you choose, establishing quantifiable metrics that you can measure your goal with will help make your goal clearer and then you’ll know if you’re really making progress toward your goal. Let’s take reading more for example. If you want to read more, you can make this goal quantifiable by setting a goal of how many books you want to read per year and then dividing that number by the number of weeks or months in the year. Or, if you don’t care about the number of books read in a year but you just want to have reading be more a part of your daily life, decide how many minutes you’d like to read per day and incorporate that into your routine. You can do the same method with exercising if that’s your goal. Decide how much time you want to exercise per week and then divide that by the days of the week. By making your goal measurable, you will have more clarity and better be able to accomplish it.
3. Schedule time for what’s important to you every Sunday. Once you have your goal in mind, it’s important to schedule time for it in your calendar, just like you would a doctor’s appointment or your kid’s soccer game that you can’t miss. I prefer mapping the week ahead on Sundays so that I can see what’s coming up and know when I can schedule time for my goal. Making an appointment with yourself gives you a specified time to work on your goal.
4. Find outer accountability. Some people are great at motivating themselves and can accomplish their goals without the help of others. I am not one of those people. If you’re anything like me, you do best when others are counting on you. There are many ways to find outer accountability and I highly recommend looking outside of your household for it, as people who live with you might just seem like an extension of yourself and they don’t provide as much accountability as you need. We’ll look at the examples of reading and exercising more. If you want to read more, a couple of great ways to find outer accountability are to join a book club (or form your own) or check out books from the library because you have to return them in a certain amount of time. With exercise, you could sign up for fitness classes. Some fitness classes financially penalize you if you don’t show up to your class, and even if you don’t go to a fitness class like that, the act of going to a class where others are expecting to see you could provide the accountability you need. You could also hire a personal trainer or join a running or hiking group with your friends. If you have systems of outer accountability in place, it’s another barrier against giving up on your goal.
5. Put a time limit on apps on your phone and delete time-sucking apps you don’t need. Did you know that on the iPhone you can put time limits on the apps you use? All you have to do is go to settings > Screen Time > App Limits and you can set limits for any app that’s taking up too much of your time. I put a 30 minute limit on my social media apps and wow, it was a total game changer! Suddenly I found myself having way more time every day and spending my time how I want to spend it. When you’re putting limits on your apps, it’s also a great time to take inventory of all the apps on your phone and delete the ones that are nothing but time-sucks (think CandyCrush and apps like that). It’s hard at first but you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how much time you have to pursue your goals!
6. Start saying no. It can be hard to say no, but the next time someone invites you to something you don’t want to go to (or that you just don’t have time for) or to do something you don’t want to do, I encourage you to practice saying no. Every time you say yes to something, you’re saying no to something else and usually, it’s you. By saying yes to everyone else, you’re inevitably saying no to your wants, needs, and desires. When you start saying no to more people and obligations, you’ll open up more time for yourself and for your goals.
Well there you have it folks! Six tips to start finding more time for your goals. I hope it helps :)