Time. What does that word conjure up for you? For most people, it immediately makes me feel stressed, hurried, worried, pressured, etc. There’s no positive time-associated mantra that you regularly hear other people say. You don’t just hear, “I have all the time I need to accomplish everything I need to.” You usually hear things like, “I don’t have time for that,” or “Where does the time go?” or “There aren’t enough hours in the day.”
We all do it. It’s what our society has done to us through the evolution of technology and making us more “efficient” (therefore, we must accomplish more in the day). But let’s ask this: What if time were not scarce at all? What if you were the source of time and could produce as much of it as you want and need?
It definitely requires a little bit of a shift (okay, a massive shift) in your own perception and thinking around time, but it will be so worth it. Here’s how it works:
YOU create time.
You are the producer of time and you can make as much as you need. When you say that you “don’t have time” to do something, ask yourself if you really just don’t want to do it. When you don’t want to do something, you can blame time and you get to be the victim. But you are not a victim of time. It’s not some concept that operates “out there” and there’s not enough time “in here.” That’s from Gay Hendricks’ book, The Big Leap: Conquer Your Hidden Fear and Take Life to the Next Level (read it, it’s fantastic). He also says in order to stop thinking of time as owning you and to reclaim your control over it, ask yourself this question (in various forms – pick the one that speaks to you):
Where in my life am I not taking full ownership?
What am I trying to disown?
What aspect of my life do I need to take full ownership of?
The goal of this exercise is to determine where you’re creating resistance to acceptance and ownership. Because by resisting acceptance and ownership, you create stress and conflict. If there is an area in our lives that we are not willing to accept, we experience the most friction in that area. Fully own and accept that part of you (or your life) and claim ownership of it. You’ll begin to feel whole and from that space you can create miracles (like producing time).
Stop complaining about time.
Completely remove all complaints about time from your vocabulary. Stop saying things like, “If only I’d gotten more sleep,” or “Love to chat but I gotta run.” And of course, stop saying all those others I mentioned above. Stop saying all of it. Because you are not a victim of time – you own that mother! The more negativity around time that you remove, the less you perpetuate the myth that time is the persecutor and you are its victim. If you need to prioritize things on your to-do list, it’s okay to say no, just do it without being a victim: “I want to finish what I’m working on before I run that errand.”
So, what now?
Practice, practice, practice. Really feel the freedom that you’ve opened up for yourself. Enjoy the flow of energy and the absence of pressure. Ahhhh. It will make you wonder why you didn’t do this ages ago.
There is one simple thing that you can do every day that helps me in my practice of creating an abundance of time, try this for yourself:
Whatever makes you feel energized, do that first. Make it a priority of your day.
We don’t mean caffeine (but feel free to have some coffee, too). We’re talking about what gets your creative energy flowing, what gets your fire burning in your belly, what feeds your soul.
This time can be meditation, reading the news, journaling, playing with your puppy or kids. It’s whatever makes you feel a peaceful energy and grounds you in positivity and forward motion. We can’t tell you what that will be for you, but you probably have a good idea of what it might be. So, do it. Every. Day.
The other thing you should do, which is still part of this category, is start your work day with the task you’re most excited about. NOT the task that’s due the soonest (because remember, we produce time so there’s plenty of time to get to that task). By starting work with something that you’re actually happy to be doing, you’ll get something accomplished and fulfill the part of you that needs to check something off my list, if you’re that kind of person. This helps to get you further focused and more productive throughout the rest of the day. You may even power through the not-so-attractive tasks with more lightness and ease, and start to get more done in less time and feel a whole lot better while doing it.
If you find yourself constantly looking at the clock, refreshing your inbox, checking Facebook and Instagram, etc., then first, don’t be too hard on yourself because we all do it, but second, refocus on your goal to create time and to put your practice of self-helpery (or whatever inspires you) very first on your to-do list.
Happy time producing!