In our home we call it ‘scheduling intentions’. An hour of our precious time committed to planning the week ahead. The scheduled intentions are always flexible, so as to live in the moment when it calls, but the process ensures that our non-negotiables are achieved and that we grow in all areas important to us.
If we were to start our week without establishing intentions for health, wealth, relationships, family, personal enlargement, contribution and play, the week would end with regrets about what was not achieved. Having no direction means that our choices are responsive to an ‘in-the-moment’ emotional state and result in poor choices.
So, it is in this ritual of planning or ‘scheduling intentions’ combined with a reasonable commitment to the plan, that will help you manage well-being.
Sit with your diary on the same day each week (Sunday is normally the most effective) and literally time chunk your intentions in order of importance around:
A happy and connected family will not transpire on its own. This takes a dedicated focus to plan quality time and create experiences that are simple and inexpensive. It takes commitment and consideration to appreciate the numerous and changing challenges we all face at different stages of our life cycle. Be certain to schedule time to appreciate something more than the mundane task lists and daily trials that are natural in every family. Prioritise time to value the gift of your family.
Schedule time to plan your meals. Schedule time to plan your meals. By doing so you will save yourself unnecessary trips to the supermarket. Meal planning will save you valuable minutes searching the cupboard and will save you racking your brain for a last minute meal solution when you are hungry and more likely to make a poor choice. I encourage you to plan between 3-5 days ahead and create your shopping list from your menu for meals and snacks. With a comprehensive shopping list you will save time on your supermarket visits and limit the impulse purchases. Planning no more than 5 days in advance allows for food to keep when the unexpected arises and a meal needs to be carried over to the next day.
Plan a cook up. Block out 1 hour per week to cook 1-2 snacks for the family that will last the whole week. You will save $$ and your health by eliminating packet snacks. Cook one freezable meal a week and save this meal for the unexpected. Prepare lunches the night before to ensure that you are not left making a spontaneous poor decision, or running out of time in the morning and consequently buying an unhealthy lunch.
Start by listing every activity that you enjoy that involves moving your body. Follow by blocking out some time on most day of the week (ie- at least 5) to incorporate these activities. How can you enjoy movement more? Do you need the support of a friend, a club or your children to keep motivated? If you wait to have time to exercise, it will never happen. Also remember, exercise can certainly be incorporated into family time when you are super busy.
Block out your money making hours whether that be a job or your business. Schedule some additional time where necessary on budgeting, planning a business passion that may be a goal for the future, or business goals.
Sounds crazy and a little un-natural, but schedule someone in. When busy it is a challenge to find time to nurture your friendships, but it is essential for happiness and well-being. It may be one hour, with one person and that is fine. It can be on the phone if you are pressed this week, nonetheless make time to nurture a relationship each week.
5. PERSONAL ENLARGEMENT/ REFLECTION
You may only be able to schedule 3 minutes in the morning and 3 minutes at night, but make some commitment to prioritise and create a habit which encourages a degree of personal growth and reflection. It may be reading, meditating, simple stillness, goal setting, daily intention setting for your emotions and mood, reflection on the good, reflection on improving, journaling……….
Do you help at school, a sporting club, volunteer in any way? Who has time right? Wrong. The busiest people schedule these moments of contribution into their lives because they understand the benefits in giving rather than simply receiving. Contributing does a lot in helping us to achieve a happy state of mind.
What do you love to do that creates a joyous feeling and relieves stress? Fish, paint, surf, fly a kite, swim, yoga, dance, listen to music………. Make a ‘play’ list, and incorporate one into your week. This again could be a family scheduled time.
Join my family in scheduling your weekly intentions.
Your achievements, relationships, experiences, joy, health and wellbeing are dependent on it, and they are most certainly worth this small time commitment.
Not many people have time, they simply make time.