We are on the precipice of summer and, for many, it’s an exciting time but it’s not usually a relaxed time.
I know that sounds strange. When we think of summer we picture idyllic, warm, sunny days playing and resting. That sounds lovely. But if you’re an entrepreneur or industry leader, that might not be your reality.
I get it.
You have a lot of work on your plate. But wouldn’t it be nice to enjoy just a little of that peaceful summer?
Let’s go on a little journey for a moment. Picture this – – you’re still your high achieving self with a roster full of clients. You’re serving your people with power and passion, and you are allowing yourself time to relax and be in the peaceful space of fun and enjoyment for the summer.
Sounds lovely, right? Well, it would be lovely, and with a little forethought, preparation, and intentional planning, you can make it happen!
I’ll bet the last thing on your mind is intentional time to relax. But, truth be told, if you don’t prioritize and put intention around relaxation, connection, and self-care, the burnout will be real and fierce!
I’ve been in that place where I pushed and crammed to meet a deadline. I was so committed and dedicated to a project that I was willing to sacrifice everything else around me – family time, self-care, and everything else I’d usually give priority.
Once you start going down this rabbit hole, it’s hard to see daylight! If you’re anything like me, you begin to feel overwhelmed, under qualified and like you’re letting everyone, including yourself, down. When you get to that point, nothing else matters.
The very best thing you can do is avoid this nasty path from the start. Here are a few tips to help you along the way.
Don’t lose sight of intention.
Be sure you always understand why you’re doing something and what result you want from it.
Back in March, I had the privilege of attending a conference where Oprah was the closing keynote speaker. She shared her personal experience of discovering the importance of intention. She told us her first couple of episodes of The Oprah Show turned out to be exactly the opposite of what she wanted them to be. This was, she said because she had not bothered to understand what she wanted from the show and what her guests’ motivation was for being on.
She went on to say those moments led her to choosing intention at all times. “There’s nothing I do without knowing why and being intentional about it.” This applied, she said, to what she ate, wore, interviewed – – every element of her life.
But the clincher was this: “You might think I have the privilege of being intentional because I’m Oprah, but I’m here to tell you, I’m Oprah because I chose intention.”
Be intentional with habits.
Keep your systems tight. Oftentimes in the summer, we want to throw all our systems out the window. But don’t do that!
That doesn’t mean it’s not super important to give yourself a break when the workload is heavy. There are several, simple habits you can implement to help you define the boundaries between work and life. Many of these habits not only improve your work-life balance but will also allow for additional growth within your work and life individually.
- Work with a clear and intentional schedule rather than a vague to-do list. It doesn’t matter if your summer hours are different than the rest of the year; identify them and build your life around them.
- Identify what your new “summer boundaries” are, and then clearly communicate those to everyone.
- Figure out what your main professional priorities are for the summer, and create a clear vision to action project list for achieving this. Do the same thing for your summer plans. (Make your personal endeavors as important as your professional ones).
- Once you’ve identified your priorities, start with a list. Lay everything on the table and start prioritizing your tasks.
Remember why it’s important to choose intention.
Being intentional in every element of your life – – work, family, social interactions, community, and self – – will help you maximize your time and be successful in your endeavors. Intentional time weaves a stronger, more efficient structure throughout your routine.
Taking a break is not time wasted. We all have to come up for air every now and then. It’s not only necessary, but it’s essential. Without intentional time for yourself, you become fatigued, exhausted, and you begin to experience tunnel vision. Taking a step back gives you a good reset and a fresh perspective.
Plan some free time into your schedule. By scheduling this into your calendar, you are giving yourself permission to step away and honor your personal needs. Trust me; I’ve been there too. Without a designated time scheduled for unplugging and relaxing, you’ll easily lose focus and end up facing some serious burnout.
If you apply all of these ideas and implement them into your daily or weekly work schedule, you will find that balance is possible. With the right habits in place, your stress and anxiety will decrease.
Intentionally focusing your time is great, but it’s not possible without setting new boundaries. You’ll need to determine when your off time will be; then flip the “off” switch and end your work period. Similarly, you’ll want to take this concept of working intentionally and apply it at home as well. Be dedicated to the life around you and not distracted by work. Work has its time, but your well being, your family, and your friends deserve their time too.
Intentionally life changing
Being intentional with your time can literally change your life. True intention is formed through creating habits, dedicating yourself to the goal (personal or professional), and learning to set firm boundaries.
It may sound overwhelming, but I’d be happy to help you get started.
If you’d like to learn how to live every day with more intention, let’s schedule your free Virtual Coffee Date. I’m here to see you succeed!