Priority Determines Capacity – Time Management

How many times have you said to yourself or someone else “I don’t have enough time to do…”?

During a recent money management coaching session I had a woman who was totally overwhelmed.  She felt her life was so busy that the mention of just tracking her daily expenses put her into tears and she proclaimed “I can’t do another thing, my day is too full as it is.”

Sound familiar?  Is your day so full that even just one small additional task will bring you to tears?  I know there have been times in my life that I felt so over loaded there wasn’t one more thing I could add to my plate, plus there were many things on my plate that weren’t getting done or getting done properly.

Consider this all the items in the picture up top represents things that need to be done.  The big rocks are the most important things like, time with Christ, work,  taking care of the kids, relationship with your spouse, taking care of the house such as cooking, cleaning, etc.  Then there are the smaller pebbles, they represent things like volunteering at the church, choir practice, fund raisers for the kids, gardening, exercise, time with friends, and the like.  The sand represents what I would consider time wasters such as Facebook, NetFlix, watching TV, playing video games.

When you fail to properly determine your priorities you find you can’t fit everything you need to do in one day.  Your time management jar looks something like the picture to the right.  You try to cram everything in but the jar is just not big enough or you start to feel you have too much to do.  This is when you get upset, feel resentful and sometimes even feel angry.

What would you say if I told you that you can fit all you need to do in one day if you just plan and prioritize properly?  As Andy Stanley says “Priority Determines Capacity.”  When you put a priority on all of your tasks you will find you not only have time to do what needs to be done but you will also have time to relax and spend time on Facebook or play a video game or two.

It is amazing that when you put God as number one, then work and family, you will have time for choir practice, fund raisers and exercise.  Then have plenty of time for those little things that you enjoy doing (the things you are putting first right now.)  Notice how the picture changes when your priorities are properly determined.

The size of the jar didn’t change, only the priority of how it was filled.

Next time you feel overwhelmed, ask yourself “what am I putting in my jar first?”

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