The Happiness Project
March 2015: Aim Higher
You can at least make your day feel calmer if you feel you have enough time to do all the work you want to do.
Since I don't work out of the home full time, I am using examples of "working smart" geared more to those who stay-at-home or work-at-home.
-Have a plan
There are numorous websites and blogs that share tips for time management. I followed FlyLady for years and developed a few routines that stuck with me over the years. One of the best ways to manage time is to have a morning and evening routine. This list will be your list of things to do every morning and every night before bed. It is amazing how by just doing these few things a few minutes each day can make you more efficient. And by being more efficient, I am always happier.
Don't make your lists complicated. Just basic things that make starting and ending your day easier.
My list is something like this:
-start a load of laundry
-make a to-do list for the day
-take out something for dinner
My evening routine isn't as structured since I don't have little kids anymore. When I did, I did as much as possible before bedtime to make the mornings run smoother (like fill out paperwork, prepare lunches/snacks, pick out clothes, etc.).
I find that being efficient with my time puts me in a much better mood!
- 15 minute rule
In my case, it's usually 10 minutes. I often clean the house by setting the timer to 10 minutes and just go through a room cleaning and putting things away. It is amazing what you can do in 10 minutes! I can get sidetracked easily and the day gets away from me before I know it. Just spending 10 minutes in each room allows me to accomplish so much, yet frees up time to do other (more fun!) things.
- consider getting up earlier
This is one thing that I don't think I'll be doing. I love to sleep and I am actually still working on getting to bed earlier! It probably would help to give a jumpstart on my day, but sleep is just so important to me.
Enjoy now....not "when this happens" or "when that happens".
"In the book Happier, the author describes the "arrival fallacy" the belief that when you arrive at a certain destination, you'll be happy."
"The arrival fallacy is a fallacy because, though you may anticipate great happiness in your arrival, arriving rarely makes you as happy as you anticipate. Also, arrival often brings more work and responsiblity. It's rare to achieve something that brings pleasure without added concerns. Having a baby, getting a promotion, buying a house: you look forward to reaching these destinations, but once you do, they bring emotions other than sheer happiness. And of course, arriving at one goal usually reveals another, yet more challenging goal."
The challenge then, is to take pleasure in the "atmosphere of growth", the gradual progress toward a goal, in the present.