Do you constantly struggle to fit everything into 24 hours? Do you find it hard to start tasks, or prioritise everything you need to get done in a week? That’s only natural! But don’t worry, there’s a way to get on top of your organisation skills. It’s all about knowing yourself and knowing which aspects of your life need the most attention.
If you spend a lot of time on the Internet, you may have heard the story about the professor of philosophy; who filled a jar with rocks and asked his students if they thought the jar was full. The students agreed that it was full. The story then goes on to say that the professor fills the jar with pebbles, then sand, and between each step asks if they think the jar is full. Of course they reply ‘yes’ after every new component fills the jar. (Look up this story on YouTube for a visual representation to help you understand the concept better.)
After the sand is added, the professor explained that the jar represents their lives. The rocks are the important values such as health, family, relationships, etc. The pebbles represent the other important aspects of life, like work and study. Finally the sand represents everything else that we try to fit in, like possessions, hobbies, etc. “If you put sand in the jar first, there is no room for the pebbles or the rocks.” Meaning that if you spend too much time sweating the small stuff in life, there will be no room for the things that are truly important for your long-term health and happiness.
Now I’ll break that story down into an easy 7-step guide:
Identify 4-6 of your ROCKS. They are usually things like career, relationships, family, health, your passions, etc. If you’re having trouble deciding if something is your rock, think of things that you spend the most time doing and the things that you love to do whether you have to or not.
Identify your PEBBLES. These are things like a casual job, school, a course, or a social committee that you’re a part of. Think of the things that you have regular weekly appointments for.
Identify your SAND. This can be gardening, collecting vinyl albums, doing the dishes, laundry, playing your game console, etc.
Figure out how you like to keep track of your time. Try multiple methods if you’re unsure. I keep a paper diary, a phone calendar (complete with many alarms!) and a weekly printout of my work diary so I know exactly what I have to be doing when. Some days my schedule is down to the minute! But it feels so good when I see what I’ve accomplished at the end of the week.
Identify tasks that can be done together with another to save time. For example I put my laundry on and then walk the dog so by the time I’m back, I can put it on the line. Another example is that I like to listen to podcasts or watch video lectures while I’m cooking. Sometimes I forget to turn them on but it’s all about building habits. You’ll do things naturally after a while.
Don’t be afraid to say ‘no’. As an obliger I struggle with thinking that I am “letting people down” when I don’t go to a social event or party. Your time is YOUR time and you get to spend it the way you enjoy the most. Don’t feel guilty being selfish every now and then. You need to take care of yourself so you’re happy and healthy (and not grumpy or sick) when you do spend time with friends!
Set some rules. I have a friend who is a social butterfly and it was causing her to lose sleep because she would constantly be having breakfast or dinner dates with people, leaving her with no time to tend to her ‘pebbles’ and ‘rocks’ at home. So she set herself a rule that she can only allocate one night a week for social catch-ups. The other nights are for her to spend on her exercise, with her partner and her other commitments.
Finding time in the day for fitness should be considered a ‘rock’ for all of us. Physiologically, exercising releases endorphins in the body that are natural pain relievers. These endorphins are what give us the natural high that you feel after a workout. Experiencing this high has the potential to positively influence our daily interactions by making us feel better about ourselves.
Make healthy living a rock solid priority in your life and reap the benefits!
– Coach Dibs
If you are in the Hills District area including Castle Hill, Kellyville, Bella Vista, Baulkham Hills, Glenhaven, West Pennant Hills, Dural, Rouse Hill and surrounding areas contact us to help you get started on your health and wellness journey.