So I don't have kids. But here is what I DO have. A full time job, a horse, other hobbies, friends, family, and various time commitments. I was getting to the point where I was stressing, stressing, stressing out about not getting things done. I didn't get enough crafting done, I didn't get off work in time to make it to my bible study, I didn't hang out with friends like I said I would. I was soooo caught up that it felt like literally NOTHING was getting done. I found myself freaking out while making dinner one night, because I wasn't going to make it to my GYM class on time, and I really needed to work out, but the laundry wasn't done either.
Surely i'm not the only one?
SO! I created a system. Now, please note, this system is based on "what makes you happiest" and I don't mean that in a selfish way. It could also be based on "things that bring balance and peace to your life, when accomplished".
I listed out ALL the feats and things that need to, well...GET DONE.
Work (40+ hours a week)
Horses / Barn Time
Gym / Working Out / Personal Training
Crafting / Graphic Deisgn / Other Hobbies
Household Chores / Cooking / Cleaning
Time with Friends
Time with Family
Relaxing Time (TV, Computer, Blogging, Web & Graphic Design etc)
Volunteering / Church / Bible Studies / Enrichment
***Now time with my husband is not on this list right now, and here is why. He gets home around 10pm every night. On the 2 nights a week he does not get home that late, he is usually studying for Pharmacy exams. The weekends are really the only time we get to spend extended time with each other, so its a "giving" I'll be with him majority of time then. So - let this be an example, this method of time budgeting needs to remain flexible.
Then, I applied my scoring system to each activity.
1 - Least Important for Balance
10 - Most Important for Balance
10 - Work (40+ hours a week)
8 - Horses / Barn Time
7 - Gym / Working Out / Personal Training
6 - Household Chores / Cooking / Cleaning
6 - Relaxing Time (TV, Computer, Blogging, Web & Graphic Design etc)
5 - Time with Friends
5 - Time with Family
4 - Volunteering / Church (non-Sunday) / Bible Studies / Enrichment
3 - Crafting / Graphic Deisgn / Other Hobbies
Now its easy - spend more time on the higher rated items, than the lower rated items.
I made work a 10, because without income, the rest are not feasibly possible. I know others feel differently, but I've got to get in 40 hours somehow...that's a must.
My passion in life is horses, and I feel very lost without them, so I make sure the time I have right after work, goes to them.
After I spend the time I can with my horses, I focus on the gym. If my time had been lacking horse time, I could only pick between one or the other, I would choose horses, in hopes of making time for the gym the next day.
Once I spend time at the Gym, then I would focus time on household chores, cooking, and cleaning things up. Not because I'm a good ol' homemaker, but because living areas get MESSY and its important to keep things tidy so you stay positive in your life. My hubby and I get hungry too. If I had been lacking GYM time, I would put that first before cooking or cleaning. We can always pick up a pizza or sandwiches to save time, if need be.
Once I fulfill my responsible of cleaning and cooking, then I relax!! Its a wonderful reward...relaxing :)
The first 5 on the list usually take up a whole day - so I usually pick one thing from the rest of my list and do it weekly. For example: Spend time with Friend/Family one evening. Go to a bible study the following week, etc.
I know this is a pretty brief way of looking at things, and its not a complicated formula where you can plug and chug the amount of hours in the day, and the activities you have planned. But its flexible, and it really helped me realized WHAT things in my life establish the most balance. Hanging out with friends and crafting does not fulfill me like 1 hour with my horse would. Its important you are harvesting peace and satisfaction from the right sources.
After following this model, I have found my weeks a lot more enjoyable, and I hope you do too!
Here is a Model of my "typical week".
10 - Work (40+ hours a week) - 5 Days a Week
8 - Horses / Barn Time - 3 to 4 Times a Week
7 - Gym / Working Out / Personal Training 4-5 days a week
6 - Household Chores / Cooking / Cleaning 3-4 days a week, or a little bit each day
6 - Relaxing Time (TV, Computer, Blogging, Web & Graphic Design etc) 2 allotted times a week, open to other free times.
5 - Time with Friends 2-3 Times a Month
5 - Time with Family 2-3 Times a Month
4 - Volunteering / Church (non-Sunday) / Bible Studies / Enrichment Not including Sunday mornings, 1-2 times a month.
3 - Crafting / Graphic Design / Other Hobbies Whenever time allows!