"Not enough time!"
'Tis only an illusion!
If we focus on what really matters and we don't let random and/or minor things suck up our time, we can do all the high return items AND have lots of self-care and "breather" time, so that we do not experience ourselves as being "busy." Instead, we will fill masterful if we do this - and follow the 80/20 Way Of Living (see below).
(Incidentally, if you live to 80, you've got 2.5 billion seconds of life to live - OR 28 million minutes if you sleep 8 hours/day. Use them well.)
We suffer from self-created angst about time.
"Will I have enough time for myself?"
"There's too much to do." "I'll never be able to handle it all." (Followed by a feeling of helplessness, hopelessness, and resignation.)
"I'll never get to where I want to go."
Most of this is due to a lack of perspective on reality and due to being "off purpose" alot of the time. When we are stressed due to lack of time, we seek diversions and our discipline actually declines - thus we end up being inefficient and "busy" with small stuff, exacerbating our perceived time problem.
The wise philosophers notice that we get stuck in "more" and we try to cram everything in. We feel that we must do it all if we are to feel good. An infinite "more", where we just pile in everything we can think of is the source of suffering. In general, the solution for suffering is always seeing reality and looking at what is present that is important and letting go of all else.
Each person should proactively plan his time, which is the whole purpose of the planning, time, and productivity sections - to decide what should be in your schedule and what shouldn't - and then to decide when and how to do it the best way.
We have 168 hours a week
We sleep 56 plus we do various maintenance activities. If we work (including commute time) 60 hours a week, we'll have 33 hours left over. (If you're retired, you'll have 93 hours left over!)
Exercise to maintain good health would be 4 hours a week (to maximally utilize this time you'd have a treadmill at home).
29 hours of discretionary time is left. That's 3 1/2 work days worth of time to do whatever is important.
If you go about your maintenance activities efficiently, you'll save 6+ hours, expanding your discretionary time to 4+ work days.
TIME SET ASIDE FOR PERSPECTIVE AND DECISIONS
One of the most important time "relievers" is planning effectively. Part of that lies in scheduling. Setting up a standard week, by hour, provides a template to remind you of what you are to do at a particular time - it essentially helps you channel your energy into something decided when you were in a high state of resourcefulness rather than spending your time (and your life) randomly. See Week By Hour blank form, and use one of the suggested formats.
Having a clear picture of what you have decided to do puts you "in charge" and leaves you with the perspective on what can be cut back on if need be, so your anxiety usually is virtually non-existent.
THE OPERATIONAL MODE
Read the basic information on Living 80/20 and then decide if you want to proceed, as it is the key to being fully in charge and fully at choice in the matter. Yes, you'll do some tradeoffs, but for each tradeoffs you will get so much more.
All highly functioning organizations and people need supporting structures to keep everything working well.
Although I can have a file or two to insert some planning documents, it works much better for me to use a notebook to make sure things are easily available. I use the
Current Operating/Planning Notebook for anything up to quarterly planning (and use the
Go ahead and make up some (send me a copy, por favor). Then use them daily for at least 30 days, with a copy in your Reminders Notebook (or some accessible place).
A QUESTION/ANSWER SESSION
Why does it always feel like there is sooooooooooooooo much to do and I am always leaving out stuff, O Wise One?
Because there IS always so much to do and, without a complete list, something WILL always be left out.
That's the facetious answer.
The really big question, however, is whether this really means anything or is 'just reality.'
Oh, and, of course, this is just a way of viewing things. It is "the culturally" repeated way of looking at things. There is an implication of a "standard" set too high (on how much to do in the first place), possibly a "it should be" another (higher) way (I should be able to keep up, it shouldn't be that there are too many things to do, and it shouldn't be that I commit the sin of leaving something out...). You've got plenta company here.
One of the awareness objectives in various disciplines is to see things clearly for what they really are.
In truth, there are millions of things that could be done. It is up to us to choose which of those to do - and there is no real imperative to do any of them except for those things that mean survival and some comfort. But those things would take only a small portion of the day if we're not working.
As the Buddha says, we believe that if we do more, get more, then we will be happy and/or fulfilled. The problem is that no one is able to specify what the limit is or what is practical, so we leave the ceiling at infinity (or exhaustion), unreachable, so that we are always falling short (in our story).
Oh, and the rest of the problem is that the 'do more' and 'get more' doesn't actually produce happiness when we do it or get it. It does, however, produce suffering in the process because we are aware that we do not yet have what we believe will make us happy - and that is certainly terrible, we think - the suffering is produced because we do all sorts of evaluations of how we are falling short, sending danger signals to our brain, setting up a misery syndrome that is self perpetuating. And then we spend a huge amount of time trying to undo the damage we do and trying to get "relief" from the pressure and uncomfortability that we create in ourselves! (Diversions, distractions, TV, drugs, food for other than sustenance, extra sleep to have the body recover, repairing relationships, kissing up to others... )
The "come from" is that we are falling short and will never arrive, instead of
1. There are lots of options of what to do and I can choose what I want and leave the rest, as there is no requirement (this is an "I can add more to the base - and the base is fine" viewpoint, "additive" being the important concept here, versus "something is missing")
2. If I think something is worth my time, I will choose it.
3. I can be perfectly happy with alot less than I actually have. I know that I do not need more and that I only "make that up", like a little story.
4. Furthermore, I am whole and complete as I am - I am (have) a fully operating, capable system that can get me all that I truly need. I see that the cultural belief is one of comparison to others and to some made-up standard that I do not need to honor. Since I am free of others' opinions, I do not need to buy into the cultural norm.
5. There is lots of time, far more than I need. I appreciate the huge gift I am given. I will use that time well, as it is the essence of my life!
How's that for a short answer of an incidental question?!