Getting stuff done

One of the biggest paradoxical crazy issues that I have come across in my life is that of not having enough time to do stuff. A lot of people tell me that they wish they could do something, go somewhere or start something but they don't have enough time. I was a little puzzled by this because I used to look at people and see their lives were much less busy than mine. The reality is that if you say you don't have enough time that's bullshit. I don't say that lightly. It's simply not true. It's not a case that you don't have enough time.

Walk with me here.

Question 1. What is it that you want to do that you don't have enough time for? Go ahead and list what the things you want to do are. Even if the list is as long as your arm.

OK, done.

Question 2. What things are stopping you from doing the answers to Question1? List them. Your list might look like this:

  • My mother is ill and I have to care for her during non-work hours.
  • I am supposed to work 9-5 but it's more like 8-7.
  • I would love to spend some more time drawing and painting by my boyfriend will moan that I'm not giving him enough attention.
  • I have to cook every night for the family and it takes time and effort.

You're rushing around doing everything, you're tired and need to go to bed once you've done all the things you have to do.

So stop. Evaluate. Do you REALLY want to do the Question 1 things? You have to get thinking.

Is your boss so unreasonable that you can't ask for two days a week when you go home early? You're not asking for special treatment, just going for the middle ground. In this time, rather than slob out in front of the tv, start spending time building up the things you love. For the first couple of nights when you get home early, just chill out and rest. Brainstorm the things you could get done in the two hours you've gained. Just little things. For example, you're aim is to create a new garden. Spend an hour designing your garden. Spend the next hour looking through a seed magazine or online for inspiration. Build it up.

Are you able to get someone to help out caring for your mother on one occasion so that you can have some time to yourself? A friend or neighbour. Buy flowers to say thank you for helping out once a week for a few months. Don't feel guilty, you need to recharge to keep going and by spending time on the things you love should give you extra energy. It's important not to see it as something you 'have' to do.

Can you brainstorm ideas with your boyfriend about what he would like to do whilst you are pursuing your dreams? If there is resistance to this which doesn't seem to be going away, it's something that needs to be addressed. Life is too short. If you put your dreams aside for him to be entertained, you'll end up resentful in the long run.

Can you cheat on family dinners for one meal a week? Perhaps cook a freezable meal over the weekend to bring out in the week? Or even just take shortcuts - microwave rice and sauce from a tin? Or enlist help from the family? This will require some creative thought - granted, but lateral thinking is an invaluable skill.

It's about altering how you think about this problem of time. Don't look back in 3 years and realise that you read this post and wanted to have changed but haven't. You are the only person who will allow yourself to change your habits. If you don't want to move on, don't want to be the person you long to be and don't really want to do the things you want to do, don't do it.

You will do it if you really want to.

I think you really want to.