We all wish that we could add a bit of extra time to our days. Not to do more work or more chores, but to finally get to the things we want to do, the fun things. For me, I wish I had more time to be creative – to produce content or projects that people want to use.
Many times, I’m comparing myself to others. I look at the top people at successful tech companies and wonder what they know that I’m missing. They have the same time that I do, right? We all have 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to accomplish what we accomplish. What are they doing that I’m not?
I get up early (by my definition) each weekday around 6:15am. I help get our daughters ready for school and see everyone out the door by about 7am. I’ve not historically been a morning person, though, so I rarely take advantage of the early morning hours. Once I have the house to myself, I most often take that time to casually have some breakfast, catch up on some YouTube videos I saved for later, or even lay back down for an hour or so, listening to some music. If I’m feeling particularly “motivated”, I might take a 30-40 minute walk around our neighborhood.
Save for the walking, my morning hours – that I’m already awake for – are largely wasted. But what about the rest of my day? Well, my work is community and event focused, so my work schedule revolves around those hours. What are the hours of the WordPress community? There are none. The community is 24/7, so I’m almost always looking at what’s happening in the WordPress and WooCommerce spaces. This always-on feeling tricks me into believing that I’m always being productive. It also allows me to believe that I can (or should) work 16 hours at 50% instead of giving 100% to 8 hours. If only the other 50% of those 16 hours were used wisely…
So what’s the point of sharing all of this? Besides using it to re-evaluate my own habits, it’s to say that we all have the same amount of time in our days and, to make the best use of it we can, we need to prioritize what’s important. I need to prioritize. I need to “make time”.
Recently, I was able to chat virtually with some smart, kind, and supportive people in the WordPress space about this very topic—all about mindfulness. (Check out the conversation here.) We talked about how, if not purposefully set aside, your time will be taken by other people and other tasks. No one is trying to take away your time, but if it’s available, it’ll be filled. You (and I) have to be intentional about the time we have and use it to the fullest.
To be clear, I don’t mean that you should schedule more work time. Maybe even the opposite? What I’m saying is that we need to live with intentionality—prioritizing the time required for family, friends, community, work, side projects, and alone time. Maybe in that order, maybe not.
What do you wish you had time for? How do you plan to make it happen?