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Create Your Best Schedule

If there's one thing I thrive on, it's consistency. I like a schedule, I like a "To Do" list. With many of us trying to work from home these days, keeping a schedule and setting up boundaries is a crucial yet difficult task. Home and work stuff quickly start bleeding together and before you know it, it's 9pm and you're still "at work."

And that's not even trying to implement a social life (or whatever counts for one these days). Too often it can feel like we are trying to "shoe horn" in things that bring us joy - an action that can make an enjoyable activity quickly turn into an obligation.

What has helped me with this is a scheduling technique I learned from one of my mentors. She used the analogy of filling a “24-hr Time Jar” with rocks, pebbles, and sand. Fill your Time Jar with sand first and there’s no room left for the rocks! I like to revisit this technique every few months or when there's a large or impending schedule change on the horizon. (Back to school anyone?)

First, start with a blank schedule.

Then, fill in your ROCKS.

These are the non-negotiables of your personal life & work life:

  • Morning routine

  • Transporting your children

  • Your workouts

  • Date nights

  • Self-care preferences

  • Regular client meetings or specific work hours

  • Kids’ dance/art/piano/swim lessons

Make sure you’re being honest with what is important to you! Don’t brush off your morning run and take that client meeting “Just this one time at 7am” if it isn’t serving you!

Next, fill in your PEBBLES.

This is the stuff that propels you forward. It will look different for everyone depending on your job, its demands, and your own personal goals. This is where you schedule time to work towards your goals. Because you know what? If it isn’t on the schedule, it probably isn’t happening. Not sure what your pebbles are? Honestly, it's most likely the stuff you are scared to do because it involves putting yourself out there and being vulnerable.

Finally, fill in the SAND. This is stuff (and by “stuff”, I mean “crap”) you can do anywhere.

  • The follow up phone call you can make while parked in the Starbucks drive through lane

  • Emails you can reply to in the back of the Uber

  • Set a 15 minute timer for social media engagement (if it’s necessary for your job or as a Brain Break during the day).

I hope you find this helpful and use it to craft a beautiful life. If you’re stuck on making this work for the particulars of your life, comment below and I’ll give you a hand.

And remember, this isn't set in stone - you're allowed to change and move things around. As I said above, I revisit this every few months or when there is an impending schedule change. So save this post to come back to a few times a year!

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