As a busy mom, myself, I am not a stranger to statements like I do not have time for that, I have a lot on my plate, and I just cannot get anything done. All of these statements or stories that I tell myself like my day is all the more busy than anyone else’s day.
I also find myself exhausted any different points in my day and especially by the end of the day. Then I battle my internal “should” vs. I need to do this. I SHOULD all over myself. But the truth sometimes is that you could or should do the dishes, but maybe you need to go to bed early to show up stronger for yourself, your job, your kids, etc tomorrow.
Over the course of this year, I have really been doing a lot of thinking and trying to determine how I can be more productive and have more time to enjoy life. Yes, the whole work life balance thing is hard to manage. Maybe it is truly not attainable.
BUT I do know that no matter what the answer is, I want to make some changes in my life. Now, I cannot just toss of out to-do list – even though it seems never ending. There are things that actually do need to be done. You have to maintain your home, feed your children, complete your work, get dressed… If you allow your brain to, you will only see your life in to-do list format, in tasks. You will feel overwhelmed by your lack of productivity most days and feel like you are failing. That does not seem to be the woman that you want to be. I know it. I do not want to be her either. I want to show up differently.
So, I started thinking. My energy fluctuates throughout the day, the month, and the year. What if I understand how my energy levels respond throughout a given period of time and intentionally organize my day to help me be more productive.
Here is an example:
I wake up in the morning and I know I do not have much energy immediately. So, I reserve this time to start with coffee and maybe a little breakfast. I can make that happen on little energy.
Once I am awake, I can function a little stronger, my energy is increasing. I can now get ready and get the kids moving for the day.
Now, I am off to work. Downtime in the car. My Energy starts to slip.
Once I have arrived at work, my energy is a little low. So, I review my emails and listen to a Podcast. During this time, I plan out my day.
Mornings are my highpoint while at work. I am very productive, so I complete tasks that require more thought, more brain power.
After lunch, my energy levels dip a little. During the afternoon, I tend to work on more administrative tasks. Maybe scheduling appointments or other simpler tasks.
I get in the car again to go home. My energy levels are falling a bit more.
Once home, I have my routine. It is pretty hard and fast, so I have not taken the time to slow down to see how I am feeling. Tired I am sure.
After 8pm, I am garbage. I can so very little that requires a brain. Maybe watch the dishes or fold laundry.
Knowing these peaks and valleys, I can organize my day, so I can be more productive.
Start organizing your day, as much as possible, by energy levels vs. hours. We think of our days based on mornings, afternoons, and nights. We know what needs to get done. We are experts at creating to-do lists. We need a little support in actually creating achievable goals and organizing our time intentionally to meet any goals we do have.
I challenge you to begin journaling or taking note of your peaks and valleys. Note the following questions below.
What are my peaks and valleys in my day?
What things during my day give my energy?
What things during my day seem to drain me?
Once we have these answers, we need to go a little bit deeper to understand what activity, why, what needs to change, and where does this activity belong in your schedule.
Intentional Living Tip:
If you want to up level in your LIFE, increase your productivity, and increase your time to do things that fill you up – self care, more intentional time with your children, etc. Then download this free printable journal. Walk along through the next 30 days and start living a more purposeful, intentional life.