Weekend Thoughts: On Time Management

I’ve found that too often this past week, I’ve been running from one place to another, relentlessly, not giving myself any breaks to even breathe. I’ve been waking up at 6am every day to go to school, after which I drop my brothers off at home and eat some meal, after which I run to one job, after which I run to my second job, after which I go to the gym and or yoga teacher training, after which I finally go home, shower, and collapse.

This is a daily occurrence at this point. Even on weekends, I find myself struggling to make time for anything at all these days.

Now, one side of my brain is telling me this is a good thing. After all, I am the most productive when I’m extremely busy. But that’s just it. I’m the most efficient, well-oiled machine I can be when I don’t have time for any other distractions.

And whoever wanted to be a machine?

I like my productive weeks. They make me feel strangely more fulfilled, like I’m not a waste of space and oxygen intake and I am actually contributing to the world in some way. But what I lack, what I’ve always lacked, psychologically (and physiologically) is balance.

I’m either a lethargic bum who stays home and watches binge-watches shows I’ve already seen a thousand times on Netflix, or I’m this crazy busy person who doesn’t even have time to reply to texts from friends I dearly miss, thousands of miles away.

It’s hard for me to find balance. Something I often tell myself is that it just doesn’t work out that way, and that the circumstances of my schedule are beyond my control, but I know that’s just a load of bullshit. This type of self reasoning is defense mechanism that allows me to feel better about myself, but in the end, it’s only preventing me from genuine happiness.

So, to anyone who can relate to this notion, this complete lack of balance in life, I’m gonna throw some tips out there that might help you manage your time in a way that allows you to be efficient and productive, but relaxed and happy. Let’s get into it.

  1. Buy, or Make a Daily Planner: This one always helps me personally. I can be the most forgetful about the most important things, so having a planner allows me to document exactly what assignments, projects, tasks, jobs, or personal goals I have to complete, and when. I just bought this one from a brand called Action Planner about a week ago, and it’s been tremendously helpful. I also like planners that you can layout in your workspace, that don’t travel around with you. I have this one.
  2. Set Goals Unrelated to Work/School: I find this tip extremely important. I always try to learn a new song on bass, guitar, or piano every week, and allow myself to practice every day. Maintain your interests beyond your academic and/or professional life. Give yourself something to look forward to. Another way I do this is by allocating some time to practice yoga every single day. Will these daily goals you set for yourself really happen every day? Most likely, no. At least, not in the beginning. But the more you push yourself to make time for one ‘extracurricular’ activity each day, the more you’ll find that it’s something you can’t make it through a day without.
  3. Forget everything I’ve told you, and be spontaneous: I don’t exactly mean this literally, but keep in mind that you can’t plan or account for everything in life. If someone asks you out for coffee, some of your fellow yogis are going out for dinner after practice, or there’s an awesome workshop your friend just told you about happening in half an hour, just go for it and join them! Lots of amazing opportunities will come up when you least expect them to, and if you use some good old marginal analysis to figure out what you’d be exchanging in order to take advantage of these opportunities, you’ll find that more often than not, there’s no harm in just going with the flow and enjoying life’s little spontaneous moments.

I hope you guys have enjoyed this post, which is the start of a new series called Weekend Thoughts. Let me know if you like these and want to see more of them, or you hate them and just want more adventures. In any case, leave your feedback in the comments below!

Have an awesome day, and Namaste 🙂

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