Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.William Penn
Let me ask you this when was the last time you took some time out of your every day “busy life” to do something for you that wasn’t work-related?
Do you ever think about all the chances and risks that you missed due to your perception of having a shortage of time?
How many you families’ dinners or a friend’s birthday have you missed out on because you must do your assignment first as you would not be having enough time for that?
Or even more simply when was the last time you took some time to go on a walk?
Without Even Knowing It We Are Missing Out On So Many Incredible Moments In Life.
From my question above the one thing, they all have one thing in common which is the negative effect of time pressure on our everyday life. The mere perception of not having enough time is affecting every aspect of our lives in the worst way possible! You may not realize it, but it is sucking the life out of you.
Are we all really that busy?
Parents, students, entrepreneurs, workers, the poor, and the rich, everyone is going through this struggle of not having enough time! We are just so busy with our lives that we hardly get any time to take care of ourselves and our loved ones. We are compromising on so many things that must be on our top priority list, like self-care, figuring out our goals, and especially doing the things that we love to do! Time pressure is ruining our lives.
But what if I told you “Not having much time” is just a perception! It’s just a mindset! Would you agree with me? Well, you can decide that later!
Time pressure is our worst enemy!
Our brain becomes more conditioned to a lot of things that are said or done by people around us. It’s the human psyche. Our mind becomes conditioned to the perception of not having enough time. This perception puts a lot of pressure on our minds. Time constraints affect our performance and productivity. We can never give our hundred percent in any situation when we are facing any mental strain. Increased heart rate, a lump inside your throat and tickling sensations in the stomach are all due to the thoughts of not having much time, probably one of the most unpleasant feelings one can have. From the biological aspect, our heart starts beating abnormally under stress. This feeling of a rush due to heart palpitations affects the functioning of the body, resulting in poor performance and less productivity. The pressing sense of time shortage gives anxiety. It severely affects mental health.
It’s All In our Mindset!
When we pre-decide in our minds that we don’t have adequate time to complete a specific task or goal, it limits our productivity. It’s not like a person is not capable of doing something, but it’s the time pressure that stops the person from reaching their maximum potential. I must “not having enough time” is just a barrier in our minds. The stress of running out of time is a fixed mindset! It hinders growth, increases pressure, and reduces creativity.
I was reading a research study done on two groups of students that have been done to observe human behavior under time pressure. if you are interested in reading the research study its called “Time Pressure, Performance, and Productivity” Done by Moore University of California, Berkeley
The control group was told to be having enough time to complete the given task while the experimental group was told not to be having much time to complete it. The experimental group, under time pressure, performed poorly and lost.
Both had the same time but different mindsets. Here, my point is “the mindset” that significantly affects almost everything in life. All you need is to make sure it’s positive!
But how can I deal with this false perception of not having much time?
Everything around you changes drastically when you decide to shift your mindset towards positivity. The stress is not due to the number of hours in your day. It is the tasks on your to-do list that pressurize you towards anxiety. Often the tasks that are scheduled in the same time slots can cause time pressure. The tasks that are conflicting with each other are also responsible for this pressure. For instance, you have retirement plans and want to save money, but you also want to buy a new car. These two tasks are conflicting tasks and often lead to stress.
Try out meditation or yoga and yes, I am serious!
I discovered yoga during my pregnency and since then for the past two years it has become a huge part of my life and i have to admit that It actually takes a LOT of discipline to stick to doing yoga or meditation practice on a constant basis. It also takes a lot of structure. But In times I have to admit that it has been a great help in teaching me how to manage my time and my tasks.
Stop feeling proud of being busy all the time!
Understand that being busy all day is not something you should feel proud about or need to glorify it. We consider it a shame to sit idle. You deserve to take a step back and relax. Be at peace with yourself. The more we think we are time-constrained, the lesser the productivity.
Reduce the conflicting tasks
Reduction of conflicting tasks by prioritizing your goals effectively helps in managing time. You identify your targets and formulate a road map to achieve them.
Stop overthinking and plan, prioritize and follow through on your to-do list
Less thinking, more actions! Take your time to devise a plan for your goals, but don’t waste time stressing out or overthinking about the time shortage.
Learn how to manage external time wasters.
When we constantly find ourselves being interrupted by social media, phone calls, or even people this is the external time-wasting that I am talking about, just when you are about to finish something important, you get interrupted by a notification or someone and once you remove your focus it’s really hard to refocus again. Remember the more external time wasters you eliminate or limit from your everyday life the more you will be able to effectively complete tasks and projects and actually be productive!
And remember you always have enough time!
Focus on directing your attention towards the goal rather than checking the clock every moment. It’s great to have a check on time and manage it effectively, but too much concentration towards it will make you actually unproductive. Focus more on the action! As my inspiration Maya Angelou said,
“Nothing will work unless you do.”
Break this notion of “Not having enough time.” It’s never too late to start over. Take out time for Self-love! We are never too busy to make ourselves a top priority. Do what you love without falling into the trap of time pressure.
Since September I have gone and embraced the art of doing far less with my time and focused more my time on meaningful and rewarding activities that are actually bringing progress into my life and the one thing that has changed is my new mindset: I am no longer busy working and trying to manage everything on my own when it comes to running a company because I have to admit that was definitely draining my sanity and time and the best shift of all is the fact: I don’t use the word ‘busy’ as a badge of honor because it’s not anymore and learned to eliminate or automate what needs to be done and collaborate on the rest of the things.
You Can’t Change The World On Your Own
So my advice for anyone that’s looking to get less busy but more productive the one thing you can gift yourself is learning how to manage your time more effectively because it plays a very important role in our everyday professional and personal life.
And no you don’t have to become an expert on time management but by simply educating yourself on the basic time management tips you will be amazed by how much your life will change.
And if you are looking for a place to start check out the book “The Time Paradox” by Philip Zimbardo and John Boyd which is absolutely worth reading because it teaches you one simple lesson “Instead of trying to “manage” time (which you can’t do anyway because time can’t be managed), we need to understand how each of us “perceive” time. differently”
If you have other tips or tricks that help you manage your time better I would definitely be interested in knowing about them about