Do you sometimes feel that even though you did something all day long, you actually got nothing done?
Throughout the day, you read little bit of this site and that blog, watch a few funny videos that your coworker sent you and check the social media many times a day (and this is not for your work). Just a few more minutes…
The day just passes by.
It's hard to make time for working out, because there's no way you'd find one or two hours to get outside and move yourself.
And then there's cooking… It takes so much time to make food that a pizza delivered to your door becomes a life saver.
But all that can be so much simpler. When you learn to use your time more efficiently, things get a whole lot easier. You will have more time, so you can still get your workout in, eat healthy and delicious food and actually accomplish something at work.
How To Manage Your Time Better
For a long time, I was the most unproductive person. Working out has never been a problem for me–that's something I've done for so long that it has became my second nature, but what comes to work, I've struggled with getting my shit done A LOT.
Especially at the time when I was writing my PhD, there were many, may days when I was just staring my screen basically all day, without actually typing a single line or without reading an useful article (useful for my thesis).
If you can't get your things done at work, the number ONE reason why it happens is that…
You Don't Enjoy What You're Doing
[tweet_box design=”default”]You keep putting things of if you don't love what you're doing.[/tweet_box]
If you love what you're doing, you can't wait to get your hands on it.
What's your job like, do you actually like it?
Sure, there are exceptions. It's not flowers and sunshine every day even when your'e doing our favorite job, but in general, you should be liking what you do for living.
When I was writing my PhD thesis, I was constantly finding ways to distract myself. Because it had became clear a long time ago that what I was doing wasn't really interesting for me anymore.
Lack of interest for my studies explains why I decided to get my NASM personal trainer certification three months before I was supposed to finish my PhD. Who does something like that? I was supposed to focus on one thing, and with the thesis deadline being so close, that wasn't my NASM certification. However, learning physiology, training performance, different training methods and nutrition was way more interesting to me than what I was actually supposed to prioritize that moment.
So, I hustled my butt off. It was a really intense period when I tried to share my time between what I had to do and what I wanted to do. I'm so grateful for my sister and my best friends who had the patience to listen to me every time I called them, basically crying and asking why on earth am I trying to do two big things at a same time.
But it all worked out.[tweet_box design=”default”]Keep the circus going inside you, don't take anything too seriously. It'll all work out in the end.[/tweet_box] – David Niven
And it did, it always will.
Is the thing that you're doing interesting to you? Do you love it?
I get it that you can't always choose to do things that you love. But you have a say in what you do for living everyday.
You don't have to do that job that you hate. You don't have to fulfil other peoples dreams (your mom, your dad, your spouse, your supervisor… anyone else), if those are not your dreams.
The number one reason why you can't get your work done can be simply this: You don't love what you're doing.
Second, you can't get anything done because…
You Overcomplicate Simple Things
You want to workout and eat well, but you believe that it takes a lot of time and that you don't really know how to do those things.
There's no reason to overcomplicate heathy lifestyle and simple things like training and cooking.
What comes to working out, use the concept of minimum effective dose. Use the least amount of time possible to get your goals.
If your goal is to get into or stay in shape, not to build bodybuilder's look or train for a marathon, you can get away with spending really little time on working out.
20 minutes a day is enough to make changes in body composition, burn fat and get stronger. Here are the basic things that you need to know if you want to give short intense workouts a try:
- Using weights is recommended, but bodyweight is great as well
- Workout should be relatively high intensity
- Do exercises that use big muscles
- Stay consistent, keep your workout schedule
- 20 minutes 3-5 times a week is better than 1-2 hours once a week.
Check out my free ebook if you want to get a lot of work done in minimal time (right there, in the upper right corner!). Those workouts are all done with bodyweight, but you can find many more workouts with weights here.
Another thing that we tend to overcomplicate is cooking and healthy eating.
If you keep some very simple principles in mind, cooking and healthy eating become easy.
Outside of some more complicated meals like the meatloaf I raved about the other day, I keep also cooking really simple. Weekly meal prep is a great help in that. A few hours in the weekend pays off during the week. Have oven roasted veggies and fresh leafy greens in your fridge. If you eat grains, also cook a batch of those in the weekend.
If you have those things ready, putting together a meal is a breeze:
- Cook up some ground beef, a piece of fish or a chicken fillet in a pan. It takes you 5-10 minutes.
- Add oven roasted veggies.
- Add cooked grains (rice, quinoa, etc).
There you have it. No need to be Jamie Oliver! 🙂
It's absolutely doable to spend 30 minutes for working out and 30 minutes for putting a meal on your plate. What you do with the rest of your time is up to you.
However, I have a recommendation… Stop
Watching Too Much TV and Surfing the Web
TV is a horrendous time waster. So is checking social media multiple times a day and especially last thing before the bed.
I'm sure there's some useful stuff in TV, but still, think critically, what all that you're watching actually gives you. Does it add any value to your life? Is there anything you could do instead?
Most of those things that you watch don't really relax you, instead, there's so much noise coming from TV and social media that it's just making you more tired.
Have you ever felt that watching the TV makes you more energized? You want to get up, do things, your head is filled with all the thoughts and ideas?
Probably not. But all that can happen when you, for example, read a good book, work on some DIY project of talk to a friend.
Manage your time better and free up time to do things that actually add value to your life.
Try this for a week: Instead turning on the TV after work or checking Instagram for a half an hour before going to sleep, spend the last hour of your day reading. See how it affects your mood and if you're more rested the next day.
If you can't get anything done during the day, you'll need to make some changes.
Having done work that made me bored to death, I can say for sure that making a change in your career is possible, no matter how scary it is. In fact, it's not only possible, it's necessary. Living a life doing things you hate is no life.
Overcomplicating is another thing that keeps us using our full potential and making time for things that are important and good for us. Working out and eating healthy can be really simple.
And lastly, think where you spend your free time. Watching TV is often just a way to kill time before the bed. Many of us bring their phones in bed. If you do that, try to change it and read a book instead. You'll feed your soul and also sleep so much better. That alone makes you more productive the next day.