It’s easily done. You want to make the most of your time, combined with the fact that you rarely say no. You have a diary covered in biro from the various meetings and lunches that you have to attend. When you ask a friend if you can meet up for a drink, both of your eyes avert directly to your phones to see whether your calendars can squeeze each other in. Spontaneity is allowing them to decide where you are going. The idea of being impulsive is a distant memory when you think about all the responsibilities you have to keep.
I have been guilty of this. This is only the second post that I have written in four months. I’m actually embarrassed at the fact that I have forgone one of the things that I have loved doing for so long, because so called “more important” things have taken over. For all intents and purposes, that is an illusion. The only reason that I was reminded to write something, was after a chance encounter with a friend who said that they read the blog. Then it hit me.
I hadn’t even thought about it in months. I always keep a list of things that I want to write, but the chances are these ambitions get squashed because, you guessed it…I’m too busy. It really got me thinking about my priorities on a day-to-day scale. How often do I sacrifice things that make me happy on a daily basis to graft for the long-term vision? You can tell yourself that things are going in the right direction, and by busying yourself with a list of tasks, how do you actually know where you are? Have you given yourself a chance to reflect?
It pays to take a day off and do the things that you have been putting off. The reason that your productivity is so low, is because you give yourself nothing to look forward to. And I am not talking about that dinner that you offered yourself as a treat for writing that essay, but the food for your soul. Let me give you an example. I went to India for the first time last year, and in 6 months, not once have I looked back at my diary or even contemplated going through the pictures. Yet, it sits on my to-do list, circled vigorously with the vague urgency to get to it. That doesn’t work.
The one thing that I have realised, is that the best things you do don’t get put on your lists of mundane tasks for the day. They sit dormant in your mind whilst you contemplate taking time out of your busy schedule to actually do them. Now is the chance to make time.
For the next 30 days, I have set myself the target to write something every day on this platform. To be honest, I am quite scared, because I have never written with that level of frequency before and I fear that it could get self-indulgent. So watch out. But this is a challenge and it means making an effort. It means making time. It means “I’m too busy” isn’t good enough.
You should try and do the same. Start thinking about the things you have been putting off, the people you haven’t met, the places you haven’t visited. What can you do in the next 30 days to consciously free up your schedule and release the shackles of your packed diary?
Try it. You really have got nothing to lose.