We exist in a binge culture.
The way we consume most things from TV to food has shifted from moderation to marathons. Because of this trend of over-indulgence, we’re also seeing the counter-fad of fasting diets and stretches of no-tech or “unplugging.” Essentially, now we're bingeing on not-bingeing, too.
How we use our time follows a similar trend of bust and binge. We go for long stretches of time working really hard and then find ourselves so worn out we spend a whole weekend (or longer) vegging out to recover. The secret is trying to strike a balance between these two.
If we re-train ourselves to use our time in a balanced way we can avoid the binge.
A good start is determining our personal energy flow. No, that's not some mystical chakra thing. It's recognizing that our bodies operate on a rhythm. And those rhythms are individual. Some people do their best work at 5 am. Others can't think clearly before noon.
We all are naturally better at different tasks at different times of the day. The ebb and flow of hormones in our bodies determine how well we can focus, the sharpness of our motor skills, and our ability to think creatively. If we work with this natural rhythm, we'll be much more productive, and much happier.
If you want to go deeper on this idea of working with your natural rhythms, check out The Power of When by Michael Breus.
You can’t be productive if you’re burnt-out.
Burn-out occurs when we push ourselves too far. It also occurs if we neglect parts of our lives in favor of working constantly. Once we hit burn-out we are stressed, tired, and irritable. The quality of our work suffers.
Sure, you could dive into your work 20 hours a day and accomplish super-human levels of productivity - for a few days. Maybe for a few weeks. You can't maintain that pace indefinitely. You will crash. It's better to never get to that point.
Pace yourself. And build balance into your schedule.
Think back to your childhood and the story of the Tortoise and the Hare. Don’t be the over-eager hare! If you sprint at the beginning of the race (or work week) you burn through all your energy right away. That means you’ll be forced to rest at some point and lose time and potential opportunities. If you maintain an attainable and manageable pace you will be able to move the entire time like the tortoise.
And we all know who wins in the end.
Making time for you is a necessity, not a luxury
We need to determine how much time we need for maintenance (going to the gym, sleeping, eating etc.) and personal time (spending time with friends and family, working on a hobby, traveling etc.). And we need to make sure those things happen.
These are the things that give your body a chance to recover, and your mind a chance to decompress and reflect. And, consistently making time for friends and family means they'll still be around when you have business breakthroughs to celebrate.
A proper mix of maintenance, personal time and work will make us happy, healthy, and more productive in the long run.
Think of it this way. If you constantly drive your car without doing any maintenance, what's going to happen?
It's going to break down. Probably at the most inopportune moment.
In your trip through life, your body is your car. If you don't take the time to maintain it by getting some downtime, it's going to break down.
We need to recognize our best work will be done if we ditch the binge and go for consistent progress.
Maintain a consistent schedule to stay on track. That schedule needs to include both your work and your recharge time.
If you’re ready to learn more about how you can set-up a schedule that allows you to optimize your time, or you have questions about determining a good work-life balance contact us.
Erickson Business Coaching is ready to help you implement healthy habits that will set-up long-term success for your business.
If you are having trouble knowing exactly where your business should be going or what you need to make your journey successful, we can help!
Book a free 1-hour Breakthrough Consultation with us.