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May 19, 2015

Take Back Your Time This Summer

Being a summer baby myself, I love the warm weather months. I love cookouts and picnics, vacations and being outside as much as possible. Everyone is in a better mood and it seems like there are endless fun things to...

Being a summer baby myself, I love the warm weather months. I love cookouts and picnics, vacations and being outside as much as possible. Everyone is in a better mood and it seems like there are endless fun things to do and get into.

With summer right around the corner, many of us have dreams and plans for what we’d like to do. But if we’re not careful, it’s easy to go from school-year-crazy to summer-crazy, and we end up just shifting from one version of busy to another.

Instead of letting your summer get away from you before it even begins, use these four tips to take back your time so that you can make the most of it this summer at home and at work.

  1. Identify your priorities

Before each month begins, be proactive and arrange your calendar to reflect what’s important to you. If that means visiting your aging parents three states away, then put them at the top of your list (even if your kids have to miss a soccer game or two). When you manage your commitments, they stop managing you.

  1. Create space in your schedule

We often feel guilted into taking on responsibilities that are not our own, like chaperoning field trips or saying yes to extra work projects. Stop raising your hand just because no one else will step up. When you commit to less, you’ll free up more time for your own priorities.

  1. Schedule leisure time

When you finish everything else, then you’ll spend time reading, exercising and playing with your kids, right? But that never happens! So go ahead and schedule some leisure time onto your calendar. This will help to ensure these important parts of your life get plenty of time as well.

  1. Protect your schedule 

Even if you start off your week with the best of intentions, things will inevitably come up. You’ll get requests from work, invitations from friends, and distractions from every corner of your life. But it’s vital that you protect your schedule. Practice saying no to last-minute requests and invitations that conflict with your priorities.

If you can remember to do these four things when summer rolls around, you’ll have less stress and more fun. And isn’t that what summer is all about?

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Leave a Comment

  1. luciana says:

    So timely. I haven’t forgotten about the cow time budget. You’re awesome!

  2. Peggy says:

    I got to see you speak at the Coordinator night in Seattle. So excited to have a chance to get T delve into your writing! This is a tough one and so important especially for those of us who continue to work fulltime through the summer and who don’t have a lot of vacation time. Thank you for your thoughts on how to keep it real.