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Coaching Leadership Personal growth Random Thoughts

Prioritise your life around your work not the other way around

While I know my enthusiasm for writing isn’t fading, I am struggling to make time for myself to show up every day. As I’ve mentioned before, this project is slowly turning into a daily blog that’s updated twice a week. And I’ll be honest — that’s not what I want.

I started this blog to document my journey as a coach, psychologist, an entrepreneur, a recreational, and a work-in-progress striving to achieve excellence. But my actions haven’t been in sync with my objectives lately.

And no, it’s not that I’m struggling with writer’s block (I don’t think it exists) or procrastination. I am unable to prioritise what’s important to me versus what’s important for my business and work. I think I’m making the age-old mistake of designing a life around my work than the other way around. That is frustrating.

The discipline of showing up and sharing a thought (or two) is a practice that I don’t ever want to do without. But it takes a heck of a lot of effort if you’re busy as hell. The reality of juggling with a dozen priorities while trying on focus on a million things that are vying for your attention is hard. You can’t help but get sucked by these energy vampires.

Is there a way out? I think there is — blocking out time and doing what’s important to you anyway. For example, writing and studying (I’m researching on workplace and behavioural psychology) are two high leverage activities that I enjoy. Instead of scheduling them into my calendar, I default to getting these things done first thing in the morning.

On days when I’m unable to get up early, depending on my state of mind, I choose to either write or study before (physical) training and pick the activity I didn’t do after I have trained. Work starts after I’m through with my daily priorities. Of course, there are days when I’m just not able to make this happen. And that’s okay. You don’t have to beat yourself up.

It’s a practice. There’s a lifetime to master it.

Except for a few days, I’ve been writing almost daily. Yet, I’m unable to take out time to review because I’m hoping to “get to it” later. And that never happens. Not because I don’t want to, but life gets in the way.

The key is to address your life’s priorities before you dive into your work. Even if work is your passion, there are aspects you want to prioritise — like health, prayer, meditation, family time, writing, reading, or just going out for nature walks. Get those done before you let work suck you into some other world.

High performers employ the same strategy. They focus on the high-leverage and high-return activities before they attack their work. It shouldn’t be any different for you if becoming a high-performer (or being the best in what you do) is one of your career or life’s goals.