Calendars, once designed to help us organize our lives, can sometimes feel like a source of stress and constraint. Instead of being the masters of our schedules, we've become slaves to our calendars. It's time to flip the script and learn how to make our calendars work for us, aligning with our priorities and values.
4 ways to take control of your calendar
Our calendars overflow with work commitments, social events, and family duties, creating a fast-track to stress and burnout. The relentless demands of daily life pressure us to be productive and available 24/7, fostering guilt when we can’t meet that impossible standard. Here are 4 strategies that will help you regain control of your calendar and create a more balanced, fulfilling life:
1. Set yearly priorities:
Start by deciding what priorities you and your family will have for the entire year. What are your long-term goals? Where do you want to be? This overarching vision will guide your calendar decisions. Here are some examples:
- Prioritize health and wellness
- Spend more time together as a family
- Grow spiritually together
Be sure to pray for God’s guidance as you discern what your goals should be. He may draw your attention to an area that he wants to help you grow! Once you decide what you want to prioritize, you will be able to give those things higher importance over everything else on your calendar.
2. Make your priorities a priority
It may sound obvious, but once you've identified your priorities, ensure they have a prominent place on your calendar. Treat these commitments as non-negotiable, must-do appointments. Protect this time from disruptions by saying no to non-essential commitments that clash with your priorities.
3. Practice saying no
Get comfortable saying no to commitments that don’t align with your priorities. You don’t have to decline every request that comes your way, but saying no to good things allows you to focus on the best things.
Remember that your “no” isn’t a permanent rejection, nor is it a sign of being unkind, selfish, or negative. Instead, saying no is a way of safeguarding your time and priorities, helping you make the best choices.
4. Regularly your calendar for maintenance
Assess your calendar from time to time and reflect on whether it aligns with your priorities. Checking your calendar helps you make sure you're spending your time on what's most important. Life can change, and what matters to you today might not be the same in the future.
So, take a look at your calendar, and if you find that it doesn't match up with what's most important to you, make some changes and make sure you're putting your time where it counts. Your calendar should help you live a fulfilling life, and by making these adjustments, you can stay on course.
Calendars were invented to serve us, not the other way around. In our effort to be productive and successful, we sometimes lose sight of what truly matters and where God is leading us. By setting clear priorities, making them a focal point of our schedules, and recognizing the natural rhythms of life, we can regain control of our calendars and find greater balance, joy, and fulfillment in our lives.
If you’re looking for more advice on ways to maximize life, check out these articles:
3 Ways to Stay Close to God When Entering a New Season of Life
Discovering Your Family’s Mission, Values, and Purpose
4 Ways to Have More Gratitude Every Day
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