How mindfulness can help you organize the day.
It’s that time of year again; when the “I can do everything” feeling of January resolutions give way to a February funk. The midwinter freeze has us stuck inside, curled up, basically in hiding. I’m right here with you! Stuck in the clutter of post Christmas, New Year stuff. Not sure how to put into action the changes I want to see this year. How to integrate progress into an already busy schedule. Sure I said I was going to finally lose that last 10 pounds but where exactly do I find the time to add in an extra workout? Or create that month long meal plan, or finally write that book?
Sometimes…Okay many times…Okay, okay all the time; life gets in the way of life! How many times have you said “I’ll do that tomorrow” when it comes yourself? If your significant other, kids or friends ask for something to be taken care of; you jump to, I know I do! For some reason the self gets stuck in the clutter of outside life.
You can’t be the best version of yourself for your family and friends if your mind is lost in a sea of daily life messiness. Sometimes you have to take a step back and take time for you. Just a few minutes a day can clear the mind to help calm the body providing energy to complete daily tasks.
It’s important to realize that goals take time and many of us (myself included) forget how much we can actually get done. We tend to over estimate how much can be done in one day but grossly under estimate what can be done in a month or a year! Doing little bits on a daily basis amount to massive changes within a year. And in reality a year flies by!
5 minutes at the beginning and end of the day is like a reset button. Five minutes of deep abdominal breathing will help to wash away the unneeded, the uninvited and help you see what is actually important. Every morning take 5 minutes alone (longer if you have the time) to sit in a dimly lit (or dark) place to just breathe. Let the mind do what it does, thoughts flitting by with your focus on the breath. Feel as the air enters the body, slightly cool and leaves the body slightly warmer. Bringing in fresh, calm and centering breath while exhaling the negative. Repeat this at the end of the day inviting in calm and releasing stress.
Take Charge of the Day, the Week, the Month…
Do you run through the day from one task to the next with others constantly popping up throughout the day? This is an easy cycle to get into! Somewhere along the way your actual goal for the day gets left behind only to be added to the mountain building for the next day. It’s time to take charge! To put your goals ahead of the mess.
Easier to say yet harder to do. Or is it? I have always used a calendar to keep track of tasks but I find that it is easy to put off the stuff that seems less important in the now. If I write something on Tuesday but can’t get to it that day a week will go by and all of a sudden that thing from last Tuesday is a hurried, stressful rush. Yesterday on a calendar is yesterday! With today and tomorrow brining so much more. Then someone told me about Asana (fitting name!).
How did this lovely little program escape my radar for so long?!
Now, I realise that it is meant for teams, but isn’t a household a team? By setting up projects such as “household chores”, “work”, “repairs” etc. the days seem to be freer. No I didn’t magically find any extra time but, each time I check off a task a weight is lifted. By organising tasks by projects they somehow seem less daunting. Also I love that I can delegate to a family member. Why do I need to make sure the dog is fed every morning? I have 3 perfectly capably children. Using a product such as Asana helps to focus and bring into the now all that needs to be, has to be and should be done and done at the appropriate times.
Which of course leads us to delegation…
Enlist those in your inner circle to help you, no it’s not selfish! By enlisting children (never too young to start) you are teaching them valuable life skills: organization, responsibility and compassion. Partners too! Sometimes they don’t see how much you have going on and vice versa! Together you are stronger, by supporting each other life can move along nice and smooth with fewer bumps along the way.
We have now freed up some time where we can fit in one thing every day that will help progress towards your ultimate goal.