In order to make your life balanced, you should learn how to distribute your time between all of its spheres. Time budget method will help you to close the gap between the most important goals and global ones by making them combined.
As a bonus, this method will allow you to fight your procrastination, lack of concentration and performance effectively.
Answer the question: “What is more important for you: your health or your family?”.
Yes, this question does not make sense at all. It is stupid from the logical point of view, because everyone knows it is impossible to make such a choice, and both parts of one’s life are worth equal attention. Priority definition does not work in this case. It is obvious that both aspects require time devoted to them, just like other important spheres.
But here is a hidden trick: because of not knowing the right choice between these two aspects, you don’t know how to spend your time correctly. Should you visit your mother or go to the gym?
Mom would be happy if you visit her, but she is going to be even more happy if her child is healthy and happy itself.
If you don’t solve a task of such kind correctly, you start “tying shoelaces”: concentrate on one life aspect (job, for instance), and when another neglected aspect hits your head painfully, you start dealing with it instead of a previous one. And so on, so on, so on. You pay attention to laces once they get untied only. This approach can doubtfully be called as right one.
The trouble is you being in the reaction mode. You do not control your life aspects, but just react to irritators.
Time budget is one of the best methods to deal with “untied laces” problem. To set it up, you need to proactively distribute time between aspects that are important for you. Just like financial budget you determine the amount of time you invest in each the most important sphere of your life, and then you keep up to this plan.
Keeping up to your budget will save you from spending your time for other, less important aspects. Additionally, you are going to start treating these aspects more consciously: to know how much time is required for each of them, and to value that time.
Moreover, you free your mental energy for making other important decisions, as you don’t have to daily react on everything that happens to you. If main spheres of your life are fine, you can concentrate on your global life goals.
How to Create a Time Budget?
1. Determine Main Aspects of Your Life
Forget about your deeds and tasks for a minute. Concentrate on fields of your life that are the most important for you. It can be your family, or writing a screenplay for a full-meter movie. These fields require time devoted to them in order to keep them under control. Your list can be different from that of another human, though there will be enough similar points as well. Use brainstorm method or just stay alone and think well.
2. Distribute Time Between Aspects
Everything is quite individual in this case, though here are some tips:
- Do not devote much time to ongoing tasks. Of course, if your fridge got broken, you need to call a pro, wait for them to come and to spend much unpredicted time on that. But many other tasks are not really that important, and they still take time out of your budget.
- Do not devote all your time for a budget first. Find out how many hours free of work you have, and then devote 50% of it for time budget. You can increase this percent with time.
- Do not plan for long first. Let it be a month to start. See if you can deal with that. After a month passes, you can review your time budget, make conclusions and redo it.
3. Track Your Time
Have a diary and write down what happened to you during a day and what you spent your time on there. It is very important to start treating your time consciously. You can use various apps that help you track time devoted to something, or to measure it on your own.
Even the fact you start paying attention to your time can make your life more full and conscious.
4. Review Time You Spend
It is absolutely normal if you do not complete your budget on 100%. This should be treated with philosophy and humor. On the other side, you should always think about increasing this percentage. This is what makes this method flexible and living.
It would be perfect if you could review your time exes once a week. Here are questions that will help you optimize them:
- Have I spent more or less time for a precise aspect?
- Have I devoted the right amount of time onto overall time budget or it should be increased/decreased?
- How do I feel after introducing time budget? Do I feel my life to become more full and balanced?
- Are there any life aspects I could miss and not to insert them into time budget?
Treating your time as something material helps you live your full life. Look after your time and use your time budget correctly.