Fun With Calendars

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It’s summertime and many of us have a list of “to-do’s” that we want to accomplish before summer ends.  In fact many of us always have a list of to-do’s.  We have items on our calendar like work events, school events, kids events, party invites, weddings, application deadlines, ect… and then we have all the “little” things that we want to do, rattling around in the back of our head.  At the end of a season I hear so many people say, ‘it went by so fast and there was so much more I wanted to do!’  Whether it’s cleaning out your spare bedroom, finding time to rest, or researching grad schools, all of these “little” things might be the things that make us feel the most satisfied.

The proverbial “they” tell us that:
Stress is not what we are doing, it’s what we are NOT doing.”

Use your calendar!  As most of my clients know, many of my coaching strategies involve a calendar.  Why?  Because we are often a slave to our calendars, and we can use that to our advantage.   The challenge is we often only put things on our agendas that other people ask of us or invite us to, making much of our time and life very reactive.  Take control of your summer by creating a pro-active calendar.  Even if you are craving less structure and more spontaneity, likely you will have to take steps to carve out some time that doesn’t involve a plan.  There is nothing too “unimportant” for my calendar including, showers, down time, and exercise.

Plan of attack:

  1. Make a list of all the things you would like to do this summer.
  2. Prioritize that list
  3. Pick your top 3-5
  4. Look at the next 8 weeks
  5. Break your top 3-5 into steps, for instance if camping is on your list, break it down into who you want to invite, supply list, making a reservation, and actually going.
  6. Plot each step of each goal on your calendar (it doesn’t all happen in one day)
  7. Make your plan fail proof: when you plot each step, pick an actual start and end time, so you know about how long of a time frame you will need

*The other day I had a 45minute date with my husband.  When 6pm came we were both tired, I had a sore throat, and I wasn’t really hungry.  But at 5:55pm my phone blinked with a calendar reminder that said “Happy Hour with Kyle” and I thought…I don’t want to cancel, I don’t know when I would get this time alone with him again this week, and…it’s on my calendar! We sat down, had a drink and an appetizer and after I complained a bit about being tired…we laughed.  That laugh gave me the energy and perspective I needed to return to my kids for a happy bedtime.  It also made me show appreciation to my husband, which gave him the energy to happily bathe our 2 year old and to bring me dessert in bed that night.  In hindsight, that “appointment” with my husband was the most important meeting of my day.

What will you calendar in this summer?

Rachel

*Interested in discovering up to 10 hours of free time in your week? Contact me about my Take Back Your Time workshop