This one comes up all the time in our house, mostly because I’m a planner and my husband is not.
I appreciate – and sometimes envy – the relaxed approach he brings into both our relationship and our home. Relaxation itself is also a happiness enabler. Like most things in life, balance is key.
Time management plays into priorities. And prioritizing activities and experiences that enable happiness, well, enables happiness.
Like I said, I’m a planner. But I’m not a scheduler. I don’t block my time into 15-minute chunks. I don’t plot every minute from dawn until dusk. But I plan.
I map out what my day needs to look like in order to be successful, and then I manage my time to meet those goals.
Family is my number one so all other priorities and obligations are worked in around them. My workday, for the most part, is kept during working hours. Reading, writing and sketching is blocked throughout the day.
I tackle high-priority tasks earlier in the day and I decide what my priorities are based on my happiness needs.
Managing time is really just managing priorities. My super-relaxed husband gets that. He just needs a watch and alarm bells and a lot of extra reminders about how much time has actually passed. Though we aren’t necessarily balanced individuals in our approach to time management, we tend to be a pretty good balance for one another.
Here’s my simple Three-Step Approach to Happier Time Management:
The night before, think through goals for tomorrow. Make sure and think beyond work goals, really taking into consideration everything needed to enable happiness.
In the morning, broadly map out a schedule based on those priorities for the day. Higher-priority tasks should come first, guaranteeing a higher-success rate of completion.
Throughout the time, check in with yourself in terms of those goals. Be honest about your time management and course correct if needed.
There is no right and wrong way to manage time. But the more alignment there is between what makes you happy and how you spend your time, the more happiness you’ll have throughout your day.