Let’s Audit Your Calendar. It Will Only Hurt A Little

If your life feels full-throttle, your calendar is screaming for some margin, and/or you hear yourself lament how ‘busy’ you are a few times too many…

Then maybe it’s time to do a quick audit of how you spend your time (and energy) to see where it’s really going and how it stacks up to what you say you value.

For example: you say you value time with your spouse, but you haven’t connected, truly, for longer than you care to admit.

That gardening hobby has turned into an overgrown raised bed that looks more like a prop from a jungle scene in Indiana Jones than it does that Pinterest-worthy vegetable oasis you’d intended.

You’re noticing how reactive you are to every demand coming your way and know that a few minutes a day to yourself would go a long way. But that’s feeling more like another task than the necessity you know it is (and that results in its being nowhere to be seen on your daily agenda).

None of this is meant to add any guilt to your plate. It’s meant to be a loving nudge to remind you that if things feel off-kilter, you’re the only one who has the power to pause, assess, and then do something about it.

I recognize you have obligations, commitments, and real responsibilities. This reminder is not an affront to those.

Once you’ve done a quick audit, ask yourself: 

  • What stays? 
  • What goes? (eliminated, delegated, outsourced, etc)
  • And why?

Be sure not to let a decision made by a former version of you outweigh the decisions you’re making for present and future you. It’s ok to remove yourself from past commitments (dinners, board seats, that ‘pick your brain’ call, or whatever else it might be) in order to spend your time doing the things that: 1. Only you can do, 2. You enjoy doing, 3. You’re deciding to do it with intention (rather than out of fear, obligation, or guilt).

So what will it be: what stays, what goes, and why?

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.

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