This post is a follow up on my earlier post Various & Sundry Thoughts On Developing A Healthy Overall Life Balance.
Time is obviously the one resource that none of us can ever replace. It is the ultimate unrenewable resource and I learned a long time ago that I need to guard it and manage it with seemingly overzealous, deliberate vigor. Once I’ve established my list of priorities, I can then determine how much of my time should be devoted to each one. Oddly enough this can be harder than it sounds. The higher something is on my priority list then theoretically, the more time I should dedicate to it right? Well, not so much…. I spend the majority of my time working and/or with the people that I work with despite the fact that neither the job nor the people on the job take the top slot on my priority list. (I’m sure most of you can relate.) Unfortunately this reality throws the model off and I have to compensate in other ways. For example, I travel for business A LOT and so does my wife. We both fly more than 100,000 miles per year so we’ve had to figure out how to really make the most of the time we have available to enjoy our life together.
One of the things that we do is schedule date nights and other events to do together and as a family. We have a shared calendar and we check that prior to making any arrangements. I know that may sound silly but it works for us. For example, we plan everything from a date nights to dinner with friends or even weekend getaways with just us or the family. Scheduling does take the spontaneity out of life but for us the alternative would be worse.
One last thing that I will say about time management is this, I make sure to set aside private time for myself each day to collect my thoughts without any outside distractions. I try to do this in the morning before I get started with my work day. Sometimes I use the time while driving to the office to collect my thoughts. I turn off the music, audiobooks, podcasts or whatever and just think through the things that I need or want to accomplish for the day and make a mental list.