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8 Ways to Stop Wasting our Precious Time

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Life is Short and Seneca says, “true happiness is to enjoy the present moment”, I couldn’t agree more.

I want you to live your best life. I want you to have no real regrets when you're at your end of days. 

Many of us spend our time wallowing in the past and wishing for a better future, or maybe you hustle so much for a better future that you don’t enjoy today. Either way we must remember the present moment is where life actually happens. 

If you can make everyday a day worth living you no longer squander your time waiting for some future event. You don’t know what day will be your last or how long you have. We waste so much of our time wishing it away. Wishing for Friday or the weekend. Waiting for our next vacation. Time is the most valuable asset we have, yet we don’t live as if.

We must remember to live our best life each day. Each moment adds up to our days which add up to our lives. We should be thinking how can we make today as great as we can? Because that is our life.

Here are eight ways to gain control of your precious time.

1. Stop Procrastinating

Procrastination is basically giving away time in your future in exchange for the present moment. The problem with this is you probably don’t truly enjoy the present when you think I ”should” be doing something else. 

2. Don’t Over Hustle

Be sure to enjoy today and every day. Planning for and working toward your future goals is great but not if you're making yourself totally miserable today. Maybe you work hard and hustle when it’s the right season but maintain a decent balance or you may find yourself burnt out.

3. Spend your Time like you're Spending Money

This will help you to think of invisible time as a more tangible item like cash (though I get that money really is an invisible concept too). How much is your time worth? How many hours do you actually have free in a week? Are you spending them in a way that pleases you?

4. Get off the Hamster Wheel

If you are working for the weekend or for the next vacation, knock it off. Create a life you want to live. A life you don’t need a vacation from and I’m not saying you have to leave your job. Find a way to enjoy your work, it can go from drudgery to a pleasant way to spend your time, if you are willing to reframe the way you see it.

5. Practice Telling People No

Don’t waste your valuable time doing things to please others at the expense of your dreams and best life. We waste so much time not living for ourselves and trying to please others because we feel insecure and try to make sure everyone likes us.

6. Get Rid of Being Busy

If you’re busy, you are likely not focusing on the present moment.  Instead you are preoccupied with all the things on your plate. Usually when we are busy we think we are more productive because we cram in one more thing. But being overwhelmed and multitasking by juggling two or three tasks at a time is not productivity. Most likely you are just doing a bunch of things half assed and wasting time. Busyness is a mirror for our cluttered and overwhelmed inner world.

7. Live like you are Dying

A great way to really gain appreciation for the value of time is to think of your days like they are numbered. I’m not trying to say quit your job and cash in your 401k, what I mean is don’t throw the day away. Don’t just get through it. How can you make this your best day? Who do you want to say hello to or how can this be a great day at work. Pay attention to the everyday things that you enjoy and do more of them. Getting things done. Helping a coworker. Having friendly conversation during lunch. Not over scheduling your day so you have breathing room. Whatever makes your day a good day, consciously include more of that into everyday life.

8. Stop Choosing Instant Gratification

Your present self values instant gratification over the discipline necessary to reach your goals for the future. So make your long term goals instantly gratifying. Choose your favorite healthy foods right now. Work out with your best friend or get a new workout outfit to satisfy you now. Something I did was to watch Netflix only on the treadmill or elliptical. This way I had instant gratification of watching the show I’ve been wanting to see while working at my fitness goals at the same time. Humans are “present bias”, it's why we choose that cupcake right now over the healthy body we want for our future self. It's totally normal so we simply work to compensate for it.

I hope you read these eight tips to take control back over your time and at least make a few small tweaks. I think just starting to appreciate the preciousness of time is a leap in the right direction.

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