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Time Well Spent

nikki-lampe-nalchajian-inspired-posts-time-well-spent

This year, with the knowledge that we will most likely be sheltering at home for at least the next month, I propose that April is the new January. An excellent time to take stock of your life. What are you doing? Where are you going? What matters to you?

I revisited my New Year’s Resolution post: January Assessment. It starts with, “What am I doing with my life? Is this the life I want to be living?”

Today, I encourage you to ask yourself:

  • How am I spending my time?
  • How do I wish I were spending my time?
  • Do I even know how I’m spending my time?

Try keeping a log of what you do. Not what you wish you did, what you actually do. Three of my favorite authors who have inspired me to think about how I spend my time are:

I made a Time Tracker spreadsheet (surprise!). Below is a screenshot of the first two days. Click on the image to see the full spreadsheet.

Be as specific or general as you want. I made three columns for each day:

  1. PLAN – Use this column to plan your day.
  2. ACTUAL – Track what you actually do. This is the most important column. Do this now, and worry about a plan later!
  3. CATEGORY – Use this to get a general sense of where you spend your time.

Examples:

      • Self-Care (meditation, exercise, rest)
      • Quality Time (with others)
      • Outside Work (to make $)
      • House Work (groceries, cleaning)

After you have tracked your time for awhile, you might realize you want to spend more time on certain things, and less on others. This is where the Habit Tracker comes in handy.

Last month in Note To Self, I wrote about keeping track of your habits. We are beginning a new month, and a new normal, which makes it an excellent time to start or reinvigorate the practice. You can download April’s Habit Tracker here.

Here’s what it looks like (click on image to see full spreadsheet):

With our huge change to sheltering at home, I have found my habit list to be immensely comforting and informative. For some habits, I track the number of minutes/hours, and for other habits it’s just a yes/no. It’s so much easier to see changes and patterns when you write it down.

At the end of the month, I like to total things up and do some analysis. But, you don’t need a spreadsheet formula to figure out what’s going on with your life. Things to consider when looking at your habits and time log:

  • Which actions seem to go together?
  • Where is there an imbalance?
  • What can I take out?
  • What do I want to add?

You only have this moment. Choose to embrace it and live it intentionally.

Be Inspired. Go Forth. Create Your Day.

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