In the next few paragraphs, I am going to help you assess, reevaluate and reset your priorities in order to avoid burnout. If your schedule isn’t too far out of whack, starting over may not be as difficult as it sounds. Are you ready to work on a plan to take back your life? If so, let’s get started.
1. FIRST, assemble a list of YOUR PRIORITIES
In this day and age, it is impossible to not feel overwhelmed and overstimulated at times, if not most of the time.
We live in an age of information overload. Email inboxes are running over with correspondence from people we will never meet.
Our business associates and bosses believe we should be available to them by phone or text 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
And, of course, we have lists of activities and appointments with children and spouses not to mention our own that all need our attention.
There’s so much activity that drains away our time and, sometimes, our very lives.
It is all so stressful!
But does it need to be? Stop for a moment and ask yourself: What is really, truly important to me and what really has to be on my calendar? What steps can I take to curb some of the chaos before I do burn out?
The first and most crucial thing you need to do if you want to take back your life is to decide what is really, truly important to you.
2. REEVALUATE YOUR PRIORITIES.
Take the time to reevaluate all of what you consider to be your priorities.
What is really important and what really has to be on your calendar? Stop and consider all of the things you do regularly and decide if there are things you should have said no to a long time ago but were afraid of disappointing someone?
Are there activities your children are involved in that no longer serve them?
Are there things you should be scheduling like rest and rejuvenation that are not in your planner?
Take 15 minutes to an hour to write down everything you believe has to be on your calendar during a typical week.
For example, unless you are independently wealthy, you have to maintain employment and answer to a boss. So write that down.
Our families and all of their activities, as well as our own, need to be added to the list; While you are at it, don’t forget to write down all of the family members you need to spend quality time with such as parents, siblings, aunts, and uncles. You get the idea.
Next, pencil in all of your church, business, and social activities.
And of course, sleep is not an option. It happens to be one of the easiest things to give up in order to squeeze in more activities, however, it’s one of the things you cannot eliminate. You have to sleep 7 to 8 hours, ideally each day, so that needs to be added to the list.
Also, remember items such as housecleaning, grocery shopping, and running errands.
And, last, but not least, write down time to rest.
Review your list and see if there anything else that can be added, changed or even eliminated.
Once you have written down everything you can possibly think of that is highly important and necessary, you are ready to reset your schedule.
3. RESET YOUR PRIORITIES.
Take your planner or calendar and begin to pencil in times for everything that you listed that you deem absolutely necessary and highly important.
Start with family activities. You might want to make all of Saturday and Sunday as days set aside strictly for spending time with family, and completing chores if you can.
Add your job schedule and church activities. Add in times when you normally go grocery shopping, run errands, and clean house.
Next, add sleep. Schedule time for rest or sharpening the saw as Stephan Covey recommended in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.
And, lastly, add in a few weeks of vacation in the near future, if at all possible.
Once you have all of your important activities scheduled, are there still things that need to be moved around or eliminated?
Are there things that need to be added such as a morning quiet time or do you need to schedule a time for catching up on your day’s activities with your spouse in the evening?
Reset your schedule to only include those things that are important. Examine ways to eliminate or delegate tasks that take your attention away from the priorities you have just entered on your calendar.
Regularly reassessing and resetting your schedule to focus on what is truly important will make your life richer and will help you live a life of purpose.