“I really want to make this happen, but I just don’t have enough time”, said a successful person – never!
And yet, it’s used as an ‘excuse’ over and over in the lives of busy people. Yes, an excuse. Reality is, if we ‘really do’ ‘really want to’, there’s always a way. The key is being sure we are clear about what we ‘really want’ before our time is used up by the things other people really wanted.
When we evaluate our priorities on purpose, our calendar is where we make the time to make it happen. Knowing our priorities empowers us to say yes to the best things and no to all the rest.
The opposite of this is what I like to call ‘happy wandering’! The unfortunate thing is that inevitably, ‘happy wandering’ leads to burn out and exhaustion. The ‘happy wanderers’ feel great about themselves – until they don’t. As a ‘happy wanderer’, we feel good every time we say ‘yes’ to a requested use of our time, until our days are so overloaded with ‘stuff’ we run out of time to do the things that actually bring us joy and refuel us with purpose driven energy. Consider this scenario…
- Can you help us on this committee? “YES! Happy to help.”
- Can you fix this problem for me? “YES! Glad I can help you.”
- Will you fill in for me at (___)? “YES!”
- Are you going to be at the special event that everyone is going to? “Yep.”
- Will you bake something for the office party? “Sure…why not.”
- I forgot to (____) and now I don’t have time – will you do (___) for me? “[sigh]….O.K.”
- I know you are passionate about (____) and have shared in the past how you would love the opportunity to (____). The opportunity is here – want to do it? “More than anything…but I am so busy, I just don’t have time now. Maybe another time?”
The wandering stops when we decide to go places on purpose. This is accomplished when we – Prioritize Opportunities.
When we ‘really’ want to stop the wandering and start getting results on purpose, it can be as simple as setting up a weekly process.
As you begin to fill in and/or evaluate your calendar, ask some questions that will keep you focused on the priority path and off of the wandering paths. Questions like…
- Is this something that I can/want/need to do right now to move me forward towards a goal?
- How important is it that I make this happen this day/week?
- If I don’t do this now, will I miss a valuable opportunity?
- Can this wait a day/week and still be a valuable opportunity?
- Is this something that can also be done by someone else?
- Is this something I should delegate to others?
- Did I say yes to this out of guilt but it can and should be given back to the original owner?
There are a lot of questions you can ask yourself to evaluate the best use of your time, but the best one of all is this…
- By saying yes to this time commitment, am I saying no to one or all of my priority purposes?
Own your answer. Make your yes a yes and your no a no, just be sure you are saying yes on purpose and not because you feel you didn’t have a choice.
At the end of the day,
there was always just enough time
for the things we chose to say yes to.
Choose your yeses on purpose – intentionally!
- Take a look at your calendar and give it a ‘priority’ evaluation. [printable prioritizing worksheet]
- Put some priority order to your calendar based on the evaluation
Need help? Let’s connect. Prioritizing Opportunities is not a special skill or ability that some have and some do not. We all have everything within us to live on purpose, but sometimes we need help finding it! My passionate purpose is to help others sort and sift through the questions that lead them to the truths that already exist within them. Wanna chat?