By Isabelle Laureta
I hope this letter reaches you well. I was your schoolmate back in college, and I’ve been lucky to get to know you a bit through social media. I am aware that you juggle a number of jobs–and that you still get to paint and make art on top of all your responsibilities. My question is: Do you have more hours in a day than the rest of us? Haha! Just kidding. But seriously, how do you manage your time so well? I have so many things I want to do as well, but I have a tendency to procrastinate and not manage my time well. Is this something that you’ve always been good at? Or did it take patience and practice? I’d really like to know how you do it, because my inability to manage my time well is getting in the way of me reaching my dreams.
It’s currently 12 a.m., I’m on my bed, in my jammies, and my cat is happily snoring away beside me. To be honest, I wish I could switch lives with her right about now because working isn’t exactly what I had planned on doing tonight. Let me tell you how I got in this situation.
I woke up today feeling like my body is made of jello. I tried to fight it, thinking of all the things I still need to finish and the articles I need to prepare for, but for some reason, my body just won’t listen. I know, how rude, right? But I didn’t worry because I was pretty sure I’d still get it done some time later in the day. 11 a.m.—I thought I’d check Instagram first, because, you know, priorities. 1 p.m.—I entered my room and thought, “Wow! This place is a freaking train wreck! I better clean it RIGHT NOW.” And I did, to my parents’ surprise. At about 2 p.m., my mom called for me and asked if I was still game for some grocery shopping, and I thought, “WHY THE HECK NOT?!” We got home at about 6 p.m., finished dinner and finally settled down at about 8 p.m. This was when I thought, finally, that it’s time to do what I’ve been putting off for so long—some well-deserved ME TIME! So I put on some facemask and scrolled through social media while waiting for it to dry, obviously. When that was done, I brushed my teeth, went to my room, watched some Netflix, and watched my cat fall asleep. You probably know what happened next—a few minutes of groaning, resentment, and a pseudo-naive wondering about where the heck my day went, before opening a blank Word document.
So there, that’s my secret—I don’t manage my time as well as you think I do. I’m not good at it. I put off doing a lot of things and prioritize stuff that doesn’t need to be prioritized. But I guess at the end of the day, I always make sure to accomplish what I need to, or at least do something that would help finish the task—like researching, outlining, and meme-hunting. I’m not going to lie and tell you the amount of workload I have right now isn’t taking a toll on me, but if I want to reach my goals, then I’m going to have to tough the hell up and endure being tired, and stressed, and having a hectic daily schedule, and losing a few hours of sleep, and forgetting to pamper myself, and paying the price for slacking off by working when I should be sleeping, and not being able to switch lives with my cat.
I could give you a lot of tips on how not to procrastinate: start early even if little by little, divide your tasks, don’t do it one-time-big-time, but the bottom-line of all of this is simple and honestly pretty unnerving—DON’T. It’s the only way you can get the job done without losing hair and some self-respect. Time management has a lot to do with self-discipline, so stop being stubborn and get off your butt(an advice I should probably follow as well). A lot of times I’d say, “Don’t be too hard on yourself,” but there are certain situations where that’s exactly what we need to be, and there are certain goals we won’t reach unless we are.
Rest up, Joyce, because it’s going to be hard-pressed starting today. Today is the day we’re finally gonna stop putting off the things we’ve been promising ourselves we’d do tomorrow. Today is the day we’re finally gonna stop disappointing ourselves and others because of poor time management. Today is the day we’re finally gonna start reaching our dreams.
Always rooting for you,
Ask me your deepest, weirdest, darkest questions! I’m no expert at anything and I don’t have it all figured out either (because, honestly, who does?), but let me at least try. Send them over to firstname.lastname@example.org and let’smake sense of this crazy millennial life together! <3
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