While you don’t want to become a slave to your calendar, you do want to feel important items in your life are receiving attention. Ask yourself, “Who or what am I neglecting?”
A journalist friend said she’s figured out a way to stop neglecting her adult brother. She makes it a point to drive to his hometown in North Carolina every six weeks. “I stay just one day,” she said. “I take my brother, his wife and kids out to dinner. I get a hotel room to make it easier to see them. It’s amazing how well this simple plan works!”
During the past year, Amy has visited her brother’s family eight times. If not for her plan, she says she’d likely have visited them only once or twice.
To figure out what will fit into your schedule, take a hard look at what you’ve been ignoring or neglecting. For example, have you put off a hiking trip way too long? Or would you like to revisit your childhood neighborhood? Put these activities on your calendar.
“My family has stayed close because of my late grandmother’s Sunday family dinners,” an executive said. “Grandma prepared almost the same menu every week, but we never got tired of it. Having those Sundays to touch base with our aunts, uncles and cousins all year was priceless.”
It’s much easier to plan your weekly schedule around your personal goals. It always takes less energy to engage in activities we hold dear. Manipulating time means we have to value it. By planning ahead, we can literally see what we need to do. Not planning means we’re trusting our lives to pure chance.
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Judi Light Hopson is author of the stress management book, “Cooling Stress Tips.” She is also executive director of USA Wellness Cafe at www.usawellnesscafe.org.