(but she also has a number of personal assistants..)
Have you heard this phrase? It’s everywhere recently. You can’t step foot into an Urban Outfitters without seeing it plastered on a mug or a t-shirt or a plant pot or something. It’s supposed to be a really inspirational message – You could be as successful as Beyonce as long as you’d just get off your lazy arse.
But instead of finding it motivational, I just find it really annoying. Beyonce has a hair stylist, a make-up artist, nannies, a team of personal assistants and managers. Beyonce has loads of time because she gets stuff done for her, and people work for her, and generally people worship the ground she walks on. Beyonce has more like 72 hours in the day.
In reality, no one has as much time in the day as Beyonce because we’ve all got to do everything ourselves. We live such busy lives that we find little to no time to squeeze in things that we want or need to get done.
We’re all guilty of it. No time to go to the gym. No time to apply for jobs. No time to cook.
Managing time is difficult when you’re busy. In a world where you have to study, volunteer, have a job, find some work experience on the side, and have a social life, it’s hard to find any time for yourself.
Don't feel guilty about doing nothing if you enjoy it.
Some people thrive off of having no spare time; the thought of sitting in front of the TV with nothing to do is a source of anxiety.
I am not one of those people. I need time to myself. I need time to simply do nothing. I need my hour in the morning to watch Frasier (thank you Channel 4, please never stop.) I cannot think or act rationally if I am doing a million things at once. I need time to switch my head off and chill out without worrying about all the things I am supposed to be doing.
Because, let’s face it, there is ALWAYS something to be done. Unless you are the most organised person in the world who does things months in advance, there is never truly nothing to do. And if there is never nothing to be done, how can you just chill out, guilt free?
Stop people pleasing! Fill your time with things you enjoy and not with things other people expect you to do.
The answer is to stop doing things which aren’t fulfilling for you. Learn how to say no. Sometimes we take lots of things on board because we want to please other people. We start going to Zumba because our mate wanted to. We go to social events simply to show face. We take on extra work because we want to please our boss.
Once you start to evaluate everything that is taking up lots of time in your life, you’ll start to realise what’s important to you and what really isn’t. You’ll then find yourself less stressed about time because you’ll be doing things that you want to do and not just because you have to.
It’s definitely easier said than done, but if you are feeling stressed and not enjoying the fact that you have no time for yourself or no time to do what you want to do, then it’s super important that you do start to cut down on the things in your life that aren’t benefiting you; Especially if you feel like a lack of time is holding you back from things like applying for jobs or meeting up with friends.
Don't feel bad about being a last-minute person!
Another important aspect of time management is not to put pressure on yourself to be someone you’re not. I’ve always been a last-minute person. I was the one doing homework the night before, cramming for 12 hours in the library before an exam, and buying a present for my best friend the same day as her birthday. Being last minute worked for me. I’m a person who needs a little bit of pressure as an incentive for motivation, so there’s no point in me doing things weeks in advance because I simply won’t be working at my best.
There is no point lying to yourself. I recently bought a planner to better manage my time. Well, that was the biggest waste of £8 I have ever spent because I planned out one week, one week. Now it just sits on my bedside table, making me feel bad about my lack of organisational skills.
That’s not to say that we should refuse to make improvements. Some good advice I received from my KYM coach recently was to pay attention to the time of day or week when I am feeling most motivated, inspired or creative and to use that time wisely. For example, I often find myself most motivated just as I go to bed. When it’s quiet and I have no distractions, I find it easier to do things like apply for jobs or write a blog or do some work, simply because I’m not thinking: ‘Instead of this I could be going to the gym or meeting a friend or shopping.’
Overall, my recommendation would be to find what works for you – cut out things out of your life that you don’t enjoy, make sure you get time to yourself if you find being busy stresses you out, and also try to figure out when you are at your most inspired or motivated and utilise that time while you have it.
Keep life fun!
Also, remember that life is not all about staying ahead and working on your career. Life is supposed to be fun. It’s great to be busy but make sure that you are happy with the busy life you have created for yourself. A lot of people live their lives as a sort of investment in the future, they think ‘It’s OK for me to work 50 hours a week now and not have a social life because I am building a better life for me in the future.’
This is a really unhealthy attitude because it means people settle for not always being happy or fulfilled in their lives. If you are constantly chasing your ‘perfect’ future by sacrificing your present then you are never going to be happy in the moment.