Some people thrive off of scheduling every hour in their day, making all the to-do lists and following structure to a tee. Others, like me, love a balance of routine, organization and some serious spontaneous moments in-between. And some don’t fall in either category. Are you that person that cringes when I tell you to plan your weeks ahead? Do you hate color-coding daily schedules in your electronic day timer? And does the thought of all this structure stuff makes you want to barf?
Dear Scheduler Haters,
Here’s my advice: don’t force what doesn’t work for you.
Like most things in life, there is no black and white. It’s okay to find your OWN groove with what works for you. So if the above is true for you, how do you accomplish your goals and stay on track with your health and fitness without a schedule? Here are a few tips for all the anti-schedule planners out there:
1.Make Large Vague GOALS. This could be monthly, weekly or daily. Try all three and find which one works best for you. Some examples might be: workout three times each week this month or make three meals together this week. Notice the goals aren’t specific they don’t say when or lay out all the details, this allows for freedom and flexibility to go with the flow but to still have a target of achievement.
2. Check-in Regularly. I always suggest checking in with yourself mid-week or mid-month to assess how things are going and to allow for adjustments or changes. Maybe things aren’t working out as you thought they would, or you are already overachieving what you set out in your head. Either way its important to check in, and re-set intentions moving forward.
3. Budget Your Time Instead. For some people this strategy feels less rigid then planning exact times to conquer things. With time budgeting you allot an AMOUNT of time for tasks (example: one hour to workout, one hour to meal plan, six hours to work etc.). This allows for structure but less formality of exact step by steps in your day. In my experience, this can work especially well for those that work from home.
4. Find What Works For You. White boards, daytime’s, apps, alarm reminders, sticky notes, mental schedules, goal setting, bullet lists…. there are SOOOOO many ways to schedule. I encourage you to try everything twice. And if it doesn’t work for you, leave it behind and move onto another.
5. Seize ALL The Moments. You suddenly find yourself with an hour before the kids get off the bus and dinner is already in the crockpot, what do you do with this time? Don’t turn to social media or laundry instead SEIZE it to the utmost. Make a run happen, go to the gym, do some yoga, move closer to your health and fitness goals in whatever fashion that might be. When you don’t have a planned schedule you need to make the most of the time you have even more so then those with a firm schedule.
“Planning is bringing the future into the present so that you can do something about it now.” – Alan Lakein. And there is not one way to look at scheduling your hours and planning your goals. So instead of resisting ALL planning I encourage you to look outside the box of everyday routine as we know it and to tackle your goals and tasks in a way that works for YOU. The goal in the end is to stay on track and focused, and HOW you do that is totally up to YOU. So, how do you find it most effective to schedule your days?