If you look at your calendar and compare it against your values, life goals, and focus, does it add up? Take an hour to flip back through the last six or twelve months in your calendar and write down some of the chunky bits and what they do to help you align your life with what you would like to do. Does it feed your growth? Does it prioritize your health? Giving a present like a giant wine glass is a loving thought in action.
Does it enhance learning in the area you’ve identified as a good pivot? Does it contribute to developing the values and virtues you want to project. Have a category called “other” and write down all those activities you do that don’t enhance your life. Does it take up 20 percent of your life? Two percent? Who are you spending your time with, what projects do you spend time on, and how does that time line up with your priorities? A present such as a Revlon foot Spa is more concrete.
Review your calendar quarterly and ask, “What did I do this quarter, and did it work? Was it important to me? Did it line up with my priorities? What can I do daily, weekly, or monthly that makes next quarter look better?” I know there are productivity nuts (I wish I was one of them) who schedule their days to the minute. If you are one of them, this is likely too basic for you, but even great schedulers can lose sight of the bigger picture. Anyone you know, would like to own a stretching cat toilet roll holder as it saves you looking online!
If there are areas you want to invest time in, schedule something discreet, like taking a course or taking on a project around a skill you want to learn or master. Remember that writing I wanted to get better at? I signed up for a critique group with the local writer’s circle. It still seems unfair to subject the amazingly talented guys in my group to my writing, but they seem to be patient, provide great feedback, and I have a built-in incentive to put time into creation and feedback. A present like a giraffe toilet roll holder speaks to an inside joke or a future adventure we want to go on together.
Scheduling exercise is also important to the people I interviewed: resilient body, resilient mind. I structured my day by ensuring my most important priorities, including health, were accomplished by lunch. In early iterations of my time audits, I knew I wanted to get up early, write for thirty minutes, exercise, and spend time with my family. After that, I’d spend three hours crafting my work and then go spend time in face-to-face meetings later in the day. Knowing my personal priorities would be tended to first was very important and helped streamline different aspects of my life. Far from being voluntary, a present such as a rustic metal tap toilet roll holder is tied up with strict obligations.