7 Ways You’re Wasting Your Time Without Even Realising

One of my fave quotes is “You have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyonce”. I don’t know about you, but time appears to have a miraculous way of vanishing into thin air. Yet, we do all have the same 24 hours. It’s the first week back to work and I’m thinking what have I done with all that time. That got me thinking, how could you be wasting your time without even realising?

I started the holiday off with a great master plan of how I was going to get my s*** together. Life did, as it does, chuck you some lemons. Yet, aside from that, there was the time, I know I could have done things without wasting so much time. For example, the fact that I write a ‘to-do list’ every day and put the same stuff on it, minus the odd few things I’ve ticked off. Instead of keeping the same ‘to-do’ and going through it. 

I’ve thought about the most common ways we could be wasting our time and I’ve come up with these 7 ways you’re possibly wasting your time without even realising

10 Ways You’re Wasting Your Time Without Even Realising 

1. Waiting for “the right time.”

Are you holding off on tackling that to-do item until the mood strikes you or you think it’s too big of a job for today? Procrastination is your worst enemy. If the job is too big, break it down. Make tackling that task, the first thing you do, and it will soon become much more manageable.

My ‘sort my stuff’ was way too wide, I don’t have Marie Kondo coming over and making me tip the contents on the bed and sort them. Just by breaking it down into sections and sorting sorting through each area is the way to go. Just putting ‘sort shoes’ means an easy task. Tick. 

2. Not picking up the phone.

How many times have you thought I’ll just send a quick email to sort out something? Next thing it’s turned into a 20-minute game of email Ping-Pong to settle on a meeting time is costing valuable time.

Why are you reluctant to simply pick up the phone and get it organised there and then? That’s me. I feel so anxious about what is going to be said, I would rather hide. Then email and hope it is not something too overwhelming and hope you don’t call me during this process. What a waste of time. 

3. Screen time.

How long do you aimlessly just scroll through Twitter, Instagram or Facebook? Hands up, I am so guilty of this. Limit your time on social media and you’ll be amazed how much time magically appears in your day.

The same goes for constantly checking your messages. Sure, you can answer that new message really quickly, but each time you do, you cost yourself the time it’ll take to refocus on what you were doing before. If needs be, set an automated response on your mailbox, so that people know you are only checking emails at specified times.

4. Not time batching.

I am massively guilty of this one. I would spend an hour writing an essay, take photos for blog posts, then write the blog posts. Invariably I would forget to take the photos I needed and have to make a note. Your brain works far better if it can focus on one task at a time.

Maybe add a few bits of time batching to your Sunday GYST routine?

5. Making piles.

Either file it properly or chuck it. Piling it up just means you have to rifle through a whole lot of accumulated stuff and then take action later on. I always think of the “Don’t touch it twice rule”. Why put your coat on the sofa, to then hang it up? Just hang your coat up.  Job done. 

Take time at the end of the day to properly declutter your space, so it’s ready for a fresh start tomorrow. Find homes for everything you own, so that you can easily access it and put it back when you have finished with it.

6. Always trying to impress people.

Wasting time not being ourselves is not only time wasting, but draining.

Yet, at the same time, managing others’ impressions is arguably a big part of success. Maybe, though it’s more about the impression we make.  Maybe focus more about the smaller details. The gratitude or the attention to providing extra details or customer service. That surely says more. 

7. Not saying ‘no’.

If you are always taking on too much, you could be at risk of spreading yourself too thinly and not getting tasks done. Put your phone on silent  and think before you just say ‘yes’. 

 

How do you think you are wasting time?

Creating A Self-Care Routine

This year I’m making a conscious effort to dedicate more time to self-care. If you’re anything like me then life, work, the fact time seems to be zooming by, and all our other commitments, all get in the way of self-care. I ended 2018 feeling like I didn’t have enough hours in the day. I was always feeling tired and catching every cold going.

What does self-care mean to you?

A big part of self-care for me is using it as something to make me feel happy and less-stressed. Self-care encompasses so many different areas, including both the mind and the body. By doing something every day to focus on the mind, it’s giving your brain the opportunity just to stop thinking about everything and focus on the now. If we do something every day to focus on our body, we have more energy, more nutrients, which will, in turn, improve your overall wellbeing.

What areas do you want to focus on?

I love a relaxing bubble bath, preferably with a bath bomb or lots of bubbles. I’ve started to eat better too. We have been focusing more on meal prepping and batch cooking. No more rushing to Sainsbury’s on the way home from work for a ready meal or a sneaky pizza. Unless it’s planned, of course!

I also want to focus on mindfulness. I found reading Ruby Wax’s Frazzled a really useful guide. There are loads of apps, such as 3 Minute Mindfulness, if you fancy trying it and aren’t sure you have the time to commit.

Just listen to yourself and you will be able to figure out what you need in that moment. Sometimes, it might just be a chat to a friend. Other times, you may need to disconnect completely. Or even better, go for a workout or yoga session. Yoga with Adriene is brill if you can’t get to a class.

Here are some things you might want to incorporate into your daily routine:

Get your mindset ready.

There is little point scheduling in time for self-care if you spend the entire time worrying that you have something else to do. For me, a massive part of self-care is getting myself organised. I can get myself into all sorts of disorganised chaos by not organising my time properly. If I feel disorganised, I start to feel overwhelmed and nothing gets done. Then my anxiety starts going into overdrive.

I’ve spent the past few days creating colour-coded ‘to-do’ lists, and doing things that will save me time like meal prepping. Now, I can see a bit more clearly what I have to do and where I have time to fit in self-care. I also find that journaling helps me to ‘download’ my thoughts, as I use it as a ‘brain dump’.

Get your space ready.

Similar to getting your mindset ready, your space needs to be too. You want your space to feel as calming and relaxing as possible. Otherwise, you won’t be focused on self-care if you’re too busy thinking the place is a mess. Next thing you know you’ve spent the next two hours tidying!

Have a look around. Do you need to declutter? Do you need to organise your belongings? I love Marie Kondo. If you haven’t read it, I would recommend her book ’The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up’. She also has a new series called ‘Tidying Up with Marie Kondo’ on Netflix. I LOVE IT!

Also, think about your phone. Can you have a digital detox? Switch off and unnecessary distractions and switch your phone to silent.

Setting up a self-care routine.

Schedule “me time”. Block out time in your calendar. Experiment by taking say 20 minutes per day to focus on your mind and another 20 minutes for body. It’s a small amount of time that can easily be built upon. That way you can see what works for you. 

It is important once you’ve created your self-care routine that you dedicate the specified time to it. Routine is important so that it becomes a habit. If something is a habit, we are more likely to do it.

“You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.” John C. Maxwell

What does your self-care routine look like?

I’d love to hear down below.

Lots of love,
Helen xoxo

Creating A Self-Care Routine

Get Yourself 2019 Ready

Are you ready for the New Year? I love the feeling of New Year, new start. It’s like a chance to give everything in your life a massive audit, clear out what’s no longer needed and start afresh. Here are some ideas of what I do and how you can get yourself 2019 ready.

Get yourself a diary or diary system that works for you.

I personally don’t get on well with using electronic diaries. Yet I struggled to find a diary or planner that worked for me. Eventually, I discovered bullet journaling, and I’ve never looked back. 

Go through all your old ‘To-do’ lists and reminders.

Make sure everything is ticked off and still relevant. I’m terrible for having lists in my notebook, in my bullet journal and on my phone. I’m going through all the lists now to make sure it’s checked off. If the list is something useful, I’m making a useful list I can refer back to. For example, Box Sets To Binge On, Books To Read, etc. 

Tidy up your inbox.

I always leave emails I’m working on or need to remember in my inbox. This can become very messy! I’ve now created folders and put the emails in there. Then pop a note on my ’To-do’ list where the email is and what needs to be done.

Organise your desktop and sort through your photos.

Get some cloud storage or an external hard drive to file everything away you need to keep. Then set up new desktop folders for 2019 projects. You can then change your desktop background to a picture or something that inspires and motivates you. I personally like to create my own background and use a quote which inspires me. My new one is: 

‘You can measure your worth by your dedication to your path not by your successes or failures’Elizabeth Gilbert

Set some goals for 2019.

I didn’t bother with goals at the beginning of 2018. I got part way through the year and wished I had set goals, so I did some Goals To Achieve Before The End of 2018. I’m the type of person that needs to be held accountable. Otherwise, quite frankly, it doesn’t happen! This year I am going to set some 2019 goals. Goals, to me, are more about personal growth, than something I can just tick off. If that makes sense?

Learn or brush up on useful skills.

I really want to get to grips with Pinterest and photography. So I’m hoping to find some little e-courses that will help me along the way. There are loads of blogs with helpful tips and tricks. Corinne (Skinnedcartree) has great tips for blog and social media growth. Vix Meldrew’s podcast covers everything you could need to know for setting up a banging blog. I need to find a fave who has tips for using an Olympus Pen, but I love these tips.

Give your blog and socials an audit.

Could you update your profile pictures?  I have just updated my photos after using the same one since about 2016!  I hate having my photo taken, so just kept putting it off. Are your social media bios are up to date? When did you last sort out your about page? I’ve recently updated my about page, but it’s something that can always be improved as we evolve.

Have a “Spring” clean.

All the new Christmas presents need a home? What about cheeky sales shopping? My wardrobe is full to capacity, so nothing else is fitting in that bad boy. I know that means it’s time for a good clear out. I get everything out and put it on the bed. Clean the wardrobe. I then make three piles 1) Keep  2) Charity shop 3) Bin.  Then I only put back in what I need or will wear. Make sure anything you are putting back is clean and ready to wear. If it’s been in there a while, it may need a wash or iron? It makes getting ready so much easier in the morning. Who doesn’t want an extra few minutes in bed on a cold January morning?!

If you’re looking for some inspiration on tidying and ’Spring cleaning’ your life. I love ’The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ by Marie Kondo. Also, Anna Newton’s book ‘An Edited Life’ is released in January and her YouTube videos on ‘The Anna Edit’ about creating a Capsule Wardrobe are brilliant. 

 

What are you doing to get yourself 2019 ready?

Lots of love,
Helen xoxo

Six Benefits Of Starting A Bullet Journal

Six benefits of starting journaling After a few failed starts, I started journaling last September. I was put off the idea of journaling as I thought it was a time-consuming activity that requires a regular commitment. How wrong was I! Journaling is what you make it. Since then I am a complete convert. Here are what I’ve found to be the six benefits of starting journaling.

Get organised and in control

I was fed up with buying a diary and it didn’t do what I needed. The diary would end up gathering dust, and I end up drowning in a mass of post-it notes and to-do lists. Birthdays would be forgotten, and I was getting so stressed out that I felt disorganised and everything was getting a bit out of control.

Increased productivity

Admittedly, initially, I spend too long drawing boxes and filling in the dates. I am a massive procrastinator, so any excuse to do anything other than what I’m supposed to be doing! Once I did actually get started, my journal has been a lifesaver. My productivity has increased, I’m more organised and I feel more in control of my life. There is no diary system like it. As you control what it looks like, what its laid out like and what you want to track.

Clear your mind

You can just take whatever is in your mind and “dump” it on paper. I literally call it my ‘Brain Dump’. I write down anything I need to remember to clear my mind. If I feel anxious, I write down how I’m feeling. I then go back and try to work out why I am feeling that way and what I can do to change it. The fact you have time to reflect upon your previous journal entries can be hugely beneficial mentally and spiritually. It is basically free therapy!!

Feel gratitude and Positivity

Set aside a few minutes each morning to write down what you are grateful for and what you have accomplished so far. I have a tendency to be too negative about things, so this makes me flip it and see the positives of life is a revelation. I found it hard at first and repeated the same things about family, friends, etc., but it gets easier the longer you do it. Set goals

Set Goals

You can set yourself goals, whether it be yearly, monthly, or daily. I put a little box next to the goal. It is so satisfying to tick it off. The more you tick off, the more you think what else can I strive to achieve?

Document your life

You can look back on what happened and when. The things you write become precious memories as you go through life. Re-visiting and reading back over older entries can help stimulate happy feelings, but also remind us of valuable lessons learnt and experiences.

Have you tried journaling?

Lots of love, Helen xoxo

Five Goals To Achieve Before The End Of 2018

2018 has flown by hasn’t it! It’s not too late though to put the breaks on and think about the goals you still want to achieve this year. Take a mo and jot down things you wish you could achieve by the end of the year. Pick 5 of them and get them done! Even if it’s start Christmas shopping in November or lose 4 lbs before your work do. It’s achievable if you start now.

Personally, I don’t want to end the year with lots of loose ends. I wanted to wrap 2018 up into a neat little package and send it on its way. That way I can end 2018 on a positive note and start 2019 afresh. We had half term last week, so I thought what better way to utilise the time.

1. Get all that adulating life admin shiz done. I’m talking bills, and all that paperwork and emails. If you have a car, go and get it serviced. It’s the perfect time before winter and all your money goes on Christmas or the holidays. I always feel I’m wasting a day doing life admin, but it just makes you feel so much better when it’s all done and crossed off your list.

2. Get my routine sorted. I started a new job last month with a longer commute. Going forward I want to utilise my time better. I’m going to start to get lunches and my evening meals prepared in advance again. I also want to make the most of the time commuting, instead of napping. Haha yes, that’s me doing the nodding dog impression, and waking up hoping I’ve not accidentally lay my head on the shoulder of the person next to me *cringe*.

3. Get rid of all the stuff that’s unnecessary in your life. I had a massive clear out earlier on in the year of all my clothes that don’t fit or I just knew I would never wear again. Yet, I still have lots of just random stuff in cupboards. Like who needs three diaries! Especially, given I use a bullet journal for everything.

4. Get to grips with Pinterest. I took a break from blogging and since I’ve come back Pinterest has taken off as a blogging tool. I definitely thing I need to get my head around it! If anyone has any tips to get going with it, please let me know.

5.  Learn to take photos properly with my camera. Despite having a decent camera (the Olympus Pen), I don’t use it. In all honesty, I don’t know how to use it. So. I’m going to make an effort to learn how to use the different settings.

What goals do you want to achieve before the end of the year?

Lots of love,
Helen xoxo