Manage your energy, not your time – anonymous
I frequently get asked about my heavy use of calendaring/scheduling using my day planner. People seem to think it’s very rigid and some say that if they were to utilize in the same way I do, it would cause them stress or anxiety. I think the quote at the top is the best way I can articulate to people and help them understand why it’s actually quite the opposite of stressful.
Being organized and keeping things written down, I am able to ease my own stress. I never have to be overly stressed or anxious because I have the information written down (or saved electronically) and thereby freeing up headspace. I don’t wonder if I’m going to miss an event or be late to some meeting because I have mechanisms in place to help me. My mental fatigue is far less by taking simple, actionable measures to get things out of my memory and into the tangible.
I also find that by putting all my life on paper, I can manage that energy better through forecasting. I can quickly see how my week looks and also pre-populate my schedule with things I know NEED to be done and take priority. I feel prepared for all my commitments, as well as having made time for mySELF. I block time for workouts, and also calls with friends. I block time to do writing and homework or readings, and I make sure that I don’t overload myself with (normally) social engagements that will deplete me of energy AND money. My energy (and household) are so much better regulated when I take the time to do this bit of planning.
The process itself also acts as a relaxation tool for me. Some people enjoy things like “adult coloring books” and this is similar (for me). I really enjoy adding stickers to my daily and monthly pages. I color code and embellish it. I use my planner to also act as a habit tracker, so I keep entries for things in colorful blocks and check boxes. I truly do enjoy starting and ending each day with my planner in hand and I hope that you can find something that brings you the same feeling of being able to manage your energy, especially during as stressful a time as we are in.