I'm busy, she’s busy, he’s busy, they’re busy. I can never get everything done, I'm just too busy...
Having thought about how we all spend our 24 hours and dicing it up, I came to some very real and stark reality-based facts. Some of the data came from a New York Times piece, some is just real-life stuff and of course, some general assumptions were made.
I focused my premise on a typical work week. We all have the same 24 hours to work with on any given Monday through Friday. Weekends are about as different from one person to another as you would think, therefore I did not include them.
These Things NEED To Get Done:
Cooking, cleaning, shopping, working, laundry, preparing lunches, getting out clothes (for kids mainly, but in my wife’s eyes - mine!), dressing, bathing, walking the dog, homework, soccer, baseball, lacrosse, football, dance, tennis, car-pool, sleeping, exercising, learning, and 23 gazillion more that only you know about.
These Things Are DISTRACTIONS:
Anything not listed under NEEDS, especially Social Media (this means Facebook) and television. The History Channel might be an exception. Just think of all the crap you have to deal with that is of no value to anyone or anything, it’s just there to be dealt with. Taxes perhaps would fall into this grouping.
The Breakdown, Yes Some Assumptions, But I Think You’ll Get My Point:
Sleeping gets, on average for working adults, 6.5 hours of our time, while working, including the average commute, clocks in at 11.0 hours a day. Wow! We've already spent 17.5 hours, so that only gives us 6.5 more to spend, invest, waste or maybe just survive.
Think about it...
You have to get up, get them, him or her up, shower, dress, coffee, eat, kids, bus, car pool, drop off, grab bagels for meeting and on and on and on. It's hard to cram it all in, to be sure. OK, now we're ready for exercise! Right? Maybe a minute to read a book or watch video on a place of interest? Not! OK, here it is, you decide to maybe sneak in a few minutes of meditation. You really need it, it's been a crazy moring and it’s only 7:53 AM. Your eyes get a bit heavy, you really start to really relax and you are just on the cusp, then it happens... The lady behind you blows the horn of her SUV, the light's green. Go! Go! Go!
There is nothing easy about working, raising a family or just plain living. We are constantly presented with challenges, many of our choosing, but challenges all the same.
In the end, the average Joe has less than 10% of their day that isn’t committed to something. Take time to ensure you set aside that 9.7% and really make the most of it. Whatever you decide, do it with intention, not just random starts and stops. Calendars and scheduling tools can help you manage the time that you do have for you.
Spend it or invest it, it looks the same to many, but the dividend is so much more if you invest wisely.