In part two of this blog series, I looked at ways of prioritising what’s important in order to create more time in your life. This time I want to tackle that feeling that you have to work all the hours God sends, in order to make a basic living. This is a serious issue for creative people and those in low income jobs alike…
Being messy and late isn’t the major problem
Combining working all hours, with caring for your children and your basic domestic tasks, plus your need for rest and relaxation is often impossible. There’s a trade-off between time and money. Basically you have no time because you can’t afford to delegate elements of your work or domestic tasks. I don’t want to downplay the seriousness of this situation, especially in these credit crunch times. As a self employed person, I’ve been there myself and regularly worked upwards of 80 hours a week. I try not to do that anymore.
How to break the perpetual time crunch cycle
There’s only one way out of this situation, and that is to break the cycle by making it your main priority to look at what your basic rate of pay per hour/week/month is, and work out the rate you actually need to allow you some relaxation time (and funds) and some time to re-invest in yourself, as well as time to fulfil your personal obligations. Whilst you are there, take the opportunity to phase out or cut out all the activities which are not paying you, per hour or paying a pittance. We all take things like this on out of goodwill, and regular assessment and pruning is required if you’re chronically time strapped and overworked.
How to buy more time by earning what you deserve
Once you have this figure, memorise it, and look for ways or opportunities to raise your earnings to match it (allowing for inflation) in the long term. Be willing to retrain for another role, a promotion or to restructure your business if necessary. Or take your creative vocation into a new market. It may take you years to work out what that change should be, but knowing what you are aiming for and giving it regular thought, as well as taking action will mean that you don’t drift along, wearing yourself out and resigning yourself to earning far too little because it’s what you’re accustomed to earning. That is the main thing.
Why being messy and late is such a useful ‘symptom’ to have
Understanding that your current earning capacity per hour isn’t viable in the long term is crucial if you don’t want to find yourself falling behind, getting into debt, getting depressed, getting ill, or not being able to cope if life throws you an additional crisis to deal with, which stops you working properly for a while. That’s why noticing that you’re always rushing, late, messy and chronically exhausted is so useful. A small buffer zone of time and money in your life isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity if you want to stay happy and healthy, and to be able to adapt easily to the inevitable changes in your circumstances which will come along as time goes on. Once you realise this, you’ll see that being messy or late, while annoying, is actually the least of your worries.
How good it’s going to feel not being messy and late
On the more everyday level, creating more time in your life is going to ensure that you’re not constantly shovelling mess out of the way as you rush to get the next thing finished, or get out of the house on time, and then return to chaos. You will have time to take that extra three seconds to put whatever item you have in your hand back in the correct place as you go, and you’d be amazed how quickly doing that consistently, affects the way your house looks and feels to live in.
Next time, in the final part of the ‘being messy and late’ theme, I’ll look at the issue of always leaving things to the last minute.
If you want to know more about how to place things so that they stay where you need them download an extract of ‘Banish Clutter Forever’. So simple but so effective!