Stop Saying “I Don’t Have Time”
By America’s Six Figure Real Estate Coach Roberta Ross
The truth is that we make time for what’s important. What we prioritize. What we push to the top of the list. There are a lot of people who wear being “too busy” as a badge of honor almost. They hang their hat on the “I don’t have time” mantra and when that happens, a lot of valuable things can get missed.
I recently came across a book by author Laura Vanderkam, 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think. In it she interviews dozens of happy, successful, ultra-productive people, that instead of letting the daily grind crowd out the important stuff, make sure there's time for the important stuff. Vanderkam shows that with a little examination and prioritizing, you'll find it is possible to sleep eight hours a night, exercise five days a week, take piano lessons, and write a novel without giving up quality time for work, family, and other things that really matter.
How’s that for an idea? What if we stopped the glorification of being busy and stepped up our time management game? Not just so that we can be more productive, but so that we can be happier, healthier, and lead more balanced lives? Would that be worth making the shift was we head into the new year? I think so.
One of the things I’ve found in all my years of coaching is that creating that balance, and learning to prioritize and plan is one of the very top reasons people cite to start coaching in the first place. Many of them are top producers in their own right – working seemingly round the clock. That’s a recipe for burn out, and doesn’t make for much of a home and personal life. When we can instead take what you’re doing every day and break it into what’s most important, what can be delegated, and what can be managed differently, we can start to see where big blocks of time can be re-appropriated.
Here are some tips to help you make more of your time.
- Know your peak performance times. You know yourself better than anyone else – when are YOU at your personal best? Are you a morning person? A night owl? A mid-day powerhouse? We all have times where we can work at our optimum level. Make YOUR best time of day the time when you power through some of your most difficult tasks that require the most energy.
- It’s OK not to answer – the door, the phone, or the interruption. Some of the most talented, top-producing entrepreneurs in the world credit the ability to stay on task as one of the reasons they are where they are. I even saw a sign the other day that an agent put on her door that proclaimed, “This is my power hour for prospecting and building my business. Please do not interrupt unless you’re on fire, the building is on fire, or there is an actual emergency.” It was funny, but also a humorous way to let people know that she took that time-block seriously enough to stay on task. This is JUST as important during your personal time as it is prospecting time, by the way. Let the phone call go to voicemail. Block time to stay focused, and time to answer any messages you might receive.
- Write it down. It’s kind of silly in today’s 24/7 world to think we can remember everything and really – it’s more stressful to try. Keep a journal or notebook with a calendar (hard copy or digital version) where you can chronical and prioritize your task lists and keep track of everything without straining your brain to remember every detail.
- For the most part, six-figure earners don’t do a lot of $5 an hour work. They use their time doing what they do best professionally, and enjoying the rest. To do that they get very effective at delegating busy work that can be done by someone else – often even more efficiently. Don’t try to do it all.
If you’re in business planning mode for the new year, you might want to pick up Ms. Vanderkam’s book or look for additional time-management tips and tools. It’s sure to feel good going into a new year looking forward to having more time, less stress, and more success. Good luck to you! I’d love to hear your thoughts! Follow me on Facebook today!