Finding Time for Your “Musts”
Time. It’s one of our most precious and valued items. It’s how we keep track of our daily lives, and how we spend it determines what our priorities are. Each week we hear (from ourselves and from our friends) “ I just don’t have time”- whether it’s for working out, cleaning the house, an overdue visit to family/friends or simply shopping for and cooking homemade meals.
I agree that in today’s world with overpacked schedules, finding time for anything other than the “necessities” is hard. It’s not easy to fit in extra curricular activities when all you feel like you can do is get by with the daily. Although our lives are filled to the brim, I have found that it’s essential to find and make time for your “musts”.
What are “musts” you ask? “Musts” are very simply, things that you would personally like to do each and every week, that contribute to you being a better you. “Musts” are the things that among the daily life, bring us happiness and are essential to balance.
I want to share a few tips that have made my “musts” easier to manage. Everyone assumes that since I work at a gym, that I have all of the time in the world to workout and eat healthy. They think because I am at home part of the week, that I must have all of the time in the world to make healthy meals and go shopping for real food.
That is absolutely not the case. I work 30+ hours a week, I own another company (outside of Force) which I solely run, and I have a 17 month old son- things that make finding time for myself and my priorities incredibly hard. But, I have determined the things that are “musts” for me and I make time to do those things each week.
Doing those things each week make me a better mom, wife, sister, co-worker, daughter and friend. They keep me mentally and physically healthy- and we all know we cannot have one of those without the other.
For me, my “musts” each week are:
- Eating breakfast. Every day.
- Waking up before my son in the morning
- Cooking at least 4 homemade dinners
- Doing two strength workouts
- Going on two long walks
- Getting a few hours of “me time”. This can be going to Target, running to the grocery by myself or talking a walk while listening to a podcast
Even in my most busy times, I strive to get in some of my “musts”. So how do we make sure we get these “musts” in our day-to-day routine?
- First, define your “musts”
What is a “must” for you? Maybe your “must” is that each week you need to take a bath in candlelight. Maybe you need to the gym three times per week. Maybe it’s going to the pet shelter and cuddling puppies (that one sounds like fun) or maybe it’s packing your lunch each day. Make a list of your “musts” and work with your significant other/family members/babysitter/tribe to figure out when you can do them.
- Plan your “musts”
Once you’ve figured out what your “musts” are, you need to make a plan to ensure you do your “musts”. Sit down on Sunday evening (or whenever is easy for you to plan) and look at your calendar. When can you prepare your lunches? What mornings/evenings can you get your workout in? What days of the week is your significant other home to help with the kids so that you can go spend two hours alone? Make a plan and stick to it.
- Find a partner
Even if we’ve determined our “musts” and planned our “musts”, it can still be a challenge to do them. Telling a friend, spouse, family member, etc. about you plan for the week and even asking for help, will help ensure that you are able to do them. Make plans with a friend who will meet you for an early workout two days a week, or ask a friend or family member to call you each week to go for an evening walk.
- Outsource things that take away from your “musts”
Wil and I decided a long time ago that if something needed to be done around the house, and someone else could do it faster and better than us, that we would outsource that thing. For example, fixing a toilet leak or our sump pump is going to take us many more hours than it would a professional, so we have made a concerted effort to not spend time/energy/effort on that item. Doing so ensures that we have time to do our “musts”. If you know that you do not know how to cook healthy meals, take a cooking class or find a healthy food delivery service that takes the guesswork out of preparing meals (Fresh Fork is a great local option). If you know that you will not be accountable to use your regular gym membership, find a place (like Force) where you will get one-on-one coaching and accountability with a coach. It’s not a sign of weakness if you cannot do all of the things.
- Always be prepared
Lastly, always be prepared. I think I learned this in girl scouts when I was 7. Life is unexpected and we all have things that come up and knock us off track no matter how organized and planned we are. First, give yourself grace to accept the fact that some weeks your “musts” might be less than other weeks. That’s ok. Just make sure to re-evaluate and get back on track the next day, week, etc. Second, be prepared with a back-up plan. I carry my workout bag in my car in case I have a 30 minute window where I can fit in a walk or a workout. Maybe for you, it’s preparing freezer meals for the nights when your healthy food options don’t exist. Whatever your “musts” are, think about having a back-up plan for when times get tough.
“Musts” are essential to our health and should be taken seriously. We shouldn’t feel guilty about having or doing “musts”. We all need time to focus on and take care of ourselves. It’s safe to say that our mental and physical health are our most important assets. We often need to take care of ourselves to be able to take care of others.
Need some help with getting into a workout or nutrition routine? Give us a call (812.822.0636). We’re here to help and can assist in figuring out your “musts” and how you can do them each week.