As a strength and conditioning coach the number one excuse I hear from clients and potential clients is “I don’t have time to train, prep food, etc.” Believe me, as a small business owner I understand why you feel that way. I own a gym and have a hard time finding time to work out some weeks. Truth be told though, this is just a B.S. excuse. Everyone has the same 168 hours each week. The problem is most of us do not know how to manage these hours properly. (oftentimes, myself included). The fact of the matter is that time is the most precious resource we have. Once it’s gone, it’s gone and so is another chance to reach our goals and dreams.
Here are a few ways to better manage your time:
Wake up earlier
. Having read dozens of books on successful people there is not one of them that doesn’t wake up early. If you have a lot of things to get done then getting up early before most people begin their day is a great way to get a head start. The early mornings are usually peaceful/quiet times with less chance of being disturbed. I know getting up early is tough but if you are not getting things done you need to create time. This is especially true if you do not or cannot commit time to exercising later in the day.
Get the most important things done first.
This is essentially the main point of Brian Tracy’s great book “Eat That Frog” Do the most difficult and/or important tasks first. Not only will doing the most difficult/important thing first accomplish more towards your goals in the long run but will start your day on a positive note and build momentum for a successful day. Below is a popular video demonstrating the “Jar of Life” and how doing the big, important things (big rocks) first allows you to get more done and more importantly the most important stuff done.
Focus on one task at a time.
Contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as multitasking. Meaning you cannot do two things at once. What you are actually doing is switching back and forth between one or more things very quickly. Not only has this been shown to not be a faster way to get things done but it oftentimes actually takes longer to complete tasks. Being busy and being productive are two different things. Remember the old proverb, “If you chase two rabbits at once you will catch neither”. Like I mentioned above, find the most important task, do it first and stick with it until its done. Then move on to the next task.
Limit T.V., social media and internet time.
One of the biggest wastes of time (and I am often guilty of this myself) is spending too much time on social media, surfing the web and watching T.V. All three of these things can be great a great way to retrieve information, communicate and relax but when it starts to dominate all of your time such as, checking your phone every 5 minutes for likes and scanning up and down your timeline reading this post and that it is easy to look up at the clock and realize an hour went by and you got nothing important done. Another common trend is binge watching T.V. shows. With the advent of Netflix and other streaming companies it is now as easy as pressing a button and having hundreds of episodes of T.V. shows at our fingertips. I then becomes easy to get hooked on a show and watch hour after hour of episodes that not only keep you from doing other important things but staying up later to finish just another episode. This not only wastes the excess time you spend watching the shows but leaves you tired decreasing your productivity the next day(s). Like I said, these things are all cool but if you want to create more time for yourself then limit the amount of time you spend on these platforms. Below is a hilarious video from Sebastian Maniscalco hitting this point spot on.
Learn to say “no”.
One of the most important things I learned is to not let others steal your time. If you don’t MAKE time for yourself, others will TAKE your time from you! It is as simple as that. Believe me, I know it can be hard sometimes and I can also use improvement on this but I cannot say enough about how important this is . Not everyone needs your attention or for you to do things for them the second they ask. You kids don’t have to do every sports team, event, etc. the ask for. Learn to be fiercely protective of your time. The fact is, if you do not make time for yourself it will only be a matter of time before you are burned out, cranky, unhappy and begin to feel resentful to others around you. This does not help anyone. Each day, block out some time for yourself no matter what. It doesn’t have to be a lot of time but whatever you feel you need and don’t let anyone or anything take it from you.
The saying above pretty much says it all. Time is our most precious resource. If something/someone is truly important to you such as, your health and fitness then eliminate the bullshit, be present and most importantly make it a priority to take care of yourself and have fun. You deserve it!