It’s what I say to myself when I want or need to do something new, when I need to create some content for my social media, or when I need to go to the gym. And I think it’s what you say to yourself from time to time. It’s a universal excuse to stay in our comfort zone and not start what will probably change our life. But I was so convinced about this that it’s been my number one excuse for several years. Anytime I want to add something new in my life, even if it takes me 30 minutes a week, it seems overwhelming.
However, I have time! I work only 3 days a week, so I have 4 full days to do whatever I want. But even with that, I just don’t find the time. So how can people with a full-time job, with kids, have a side hustle, see their friends and family, go out often and find time to go to the gym and not me?
So why not me?
Ok so I think that I have no time left for something, but what do I do instead?
I wanted to know, so I decided to track my time for a week. I’d fill my Google Calendar with everything I’d do for the next 7 days. I set up my Calendar to add an activity every 15 minutes.
I didn’t want to track my time with an app because I didn’t want to change my habits to be as accurate as possible about what I really do. When you have an app, you’re like, oh crap, it’s been an hour I’m on social media for nothing, so I’ll do something productive. I didn’t want that. I wanted to face my reality!
I want to know the time I spend on social media and the time I spend on important things.
We all have 168 hours during a week, and I think that most of the time, I spend time on things that are not aligned with my goals.
And the result is breathtaking in the wrong sense of the word!
So here’s my Calendar before tracking. There’s just my days at work and my time for my morning routine, which I don’t really follow, and the time I have my dinner (I don’t know why it’s here).
I have absolutely no idea what I need to do this week. I didn’t plan to work on my videos. I didn’t plan my workout sessions or anything else.
And here’s the after. My Calendar is absolutely full. And I have colors for my activities. When it’s blue, it’s all about the chores, what I do for my home, my meetings, and the time I spend eating. Yellow, it’s when I completely waste my time on social media or watching something on Netflix or something like that. yes, there’s a lot of yellow. Green is when I’m at work, and I don’t have a pause, so I don’t do something else during this time. When it’s a beige, it’s when I’m outside or when I go to work or come back; it’s my commute time. And when it’s another color, it’s when I do my workout or work on my videos or blog.
Now that I have a view of my reality and the time I spent on everything for a week, here’s what I learned.
I have plenty of time.
When I see my calendar, I realize how much free time I have in my week and how I waste my time on things that don’t matter to me. I want to lose weight and gain muscle, but I don’t take the time to workout, to go to the gym. My videos are really important, like my blog, but I spent like 10 hours working on them last week. It’s not enough. And I didn’t post on my blog at all!
I spent like 20 hours a week just on social media for nothing. And a lot of time watching something on my TV.
So if I cut my social media time by half, I can totally go to the gym and cook healthy meals or even read a book on the days I don’t work.
I already made a video about time management on my channel, and I think it was one of my first videos here. But if you have 168 hours a week, you spend 10 hours a day at work, you sleep 8 hours every night, and you can have your free time hours. And it’s pretty huge. So I can’t have the excuse to have any time to do something.
Batching my days
I need to batch my days. What I realized during this experimentation is that during my rest days, I’m a little all over the place, I need to film a video, to create content, to edit, and at the end, I’m not efficient. Most of the time, I filmed my videos on different days, so I needed to be ready, to set up my camera, to have a script ready, and so on. And because it’s difficult to have different scripts for a certain day, I filmed my videos on several days. I need to have a day for filming my videos, a day for writing, and a day for editing. By doing this, I’m on a unique task a day and I just need to be ready once.
And this week in particular, was a huge mess. I wanted to film on Tuesday, but my script wasn’t ready. Then I wanted to film on Thursday but after this big meeting, I was so tired and the light was really bad. And then I wanted to film on Saturday morning. In the end, I filmed on Saturday afternoon because I had to much to do on Saturday morning and I had phone calls from my family.
I need to be focused
And create time for my chores instead of doing one thing every day.
What I realized, too, is that during my rest days, I did chores in the middle of something. Like if I heard my washing machine end, I’ll interrupt what I was doing to program the dryer. Or I’ll end what I was doing because it’s time to prepare dinner. Even if it’s early and I have plenty of time to do it. I was in a very productive session, but it’s like I’ll miss dinner if I don’t finish my day right now.
So I need to have like an admin morning or afternoon and do all the chores this time. And if I need to do something right now, I will do it after the most important thing and no interrupt my productive session for that.
I need to create a workspace
I have a common office in my apartment, but it’s sometimes difficult to be focused when my boyfriend is in the same room the day he works, and it’s even harder when he’s in a meeting with the camera on.
So my workspace is at the kitchen table or on my couch. But you can be sure that I will turn on the TV when I’m on my couch. And bye-bye the productivity.
So I need to have a space where I won’t be interrupted, and I’ll be there whenever I need to work on something.
It’s okay to change the routines (a little bit!)
I always have the routine of turning on the TV after dinner, even if I don’t know what I’ll watch or even if I want to read. And most of the time, I watch something without watching it, and I end up on Instagram, I watch like 2 episodes, and I’m too tired to read. So I need to tell myself that it’s ok to read instead of watching TV or scrolling on Instagram, so I wouldn’t miss something.
And I was thinking about this about my workout. I have a routine to wake up, eat breakfast and shower. But I could change this so that I would be able to do my workout.
I don’t need naps
I’m a huge fan of naps! Since my first years of university, naps have helped me to survive the huge amount of things I was learning. Now, it’s more because I’m bored and I’m in the middle of a TV show. But it lasts like 2 hours each time. And I have no pain to fall asleep at night after that! So maybe I need it, but I already have my 8 to 9 hours of sleep every night. And I don’t need a nap when I’m doing something else. So it’s really because I’m bored! So I need to find something to do to not fall asleep in the afternoon!
I always do things last minute
What I realized with this calendar is that I wait until the last minute to do things, I don’t have a proper organization, and most of the time, I miss an upload on Youtube, or I skipped an entire week of posting on Instagram because I don’t have enough content.
I’ve begun to start a new organization with my Notion app, so I will try to have everything ready for the right days without missing an upload.
It was an interesting experience because I learned a lot. I thought I didn’t spend so much time on social media, but I was wrong. And I really need to be focused on my goals and remind myself why I do what I do.
There are also some positive points: I wake up approximately at the same time every single day, even if I don’t have an alarm. Before 8 am every morning. So I can totally plan my week with this in mind. And I also have enough sleep every single night. I’m lucky to have a good sleep and don’t struggle to fall asleep.
Another thing that I realized is that when I need to do something, it takes me a lot less time than I thought, and I’m really productive.
I really encourage you to track your time too. You don’t need to have an app for this. And I think you’ll learn a lot of things too. Tell me if you already did this; I’d like to know what you learned!