Mindful Moments: Tips for Improving Time Management
By: Tracy Brown AMFT
Time is defined as the indefinite, continuous progress of existence and events in the past, present, and future. We typically measure time by units, such as days, hours, minutes or seconds. It is wise to manage our time well because time is valuable. Some say, “Time is Money.” Because time is so valuable, we typically hold ourselves and others accountable for managing time well. We feel the pressure of showing up on time. Meeting deadlines on time. Being in the right place at the right time. As precious as time is, managing time can be stressful. It can either be a barrier or bridge to our success. For many, time management feels like a barrier because we never seem to have enough time to do what we really want to do. Therefore, we find ourselves asking the all too familiar question, “Where did the time go?”
I believe that in order to manage time well, it begins by being mindful of how we spend our moments. We often lose track of time, run out of time, or we seemingly don’t have enough time because we are not mindful of how we spend our moments. I’m a big advocate of Mindfulness, which is the practice of being present in the here and now. It’s a reflective exercise that increases your awareness of what is happening in the present moment. It’s the simple act of noticing without judging. By being mindful of our moments, we are paying close attention to our activities so we can notice where our time is actually going. Upon noticing, we can then begin to create a plan to manage it more effectively. Through being mindful of our moments, we simply notice what we are doing and how much time we are devoting to it. For example, we can notice when we pick up our phone and begin to scroll. Notice how much time we spend looking at email, posts and texts. Notice how much time we’re devoting to connecting with family and friends. Notice how much time it takes to shower, get dressed and groom ourselves. Notice how much time we are dedicating to the things that we love and value. Notice how much time we spend on things that may be an unhealthy distraction to our goals and impede our progress. By simply being mindful of how we spend our time, we can maximize the moments that matter the most and begin to build a bridge to our success.