Blocking Time

In a previous blog we talked about making time, and about how we can use time to create a life that reflects the values and activities that support us and our well-being. Many in our culture have become victims of our time. We constantly believe that we do not have enough time, so we rush around, and get places late, and don’t make time for things that are most important.

One of the strategies that I recommend, and has had a profound effect on my life, I call “blocking time”. You can do it in many different places, but I would suggest starting with an online scheduling program, such as Google. Start out by making a list of the things that are highest priority; when I do it, I block out time for work, blog-writing, yoga, weight-lifting, mediating, friends, etc. All are activities that I find incredibly important. With this information, I create a template for my week that has blocks for me to do these things. Once I have done this, I make this time sacred, and do not let anything else block this time period. In this way, this is creating a boundary around my time.

The second step, as I’ve written about in a previous blog, pertains to thoughts or worries that come up. To each thought worry I immediately apply one of three choices: I either do it immediately, put it into my schedule, or just let it go. Whichever of the three I use, it does not become ignored or forgotten. When you create these buffers, your life can have a pace and a rhythm that serves you without creating a backlog of undone tasks that steal your energy.

In India, there is an old saying that is widely used that if someone is in a hurry, they are poor. This stems from their belief that someone in abundance will never have to hurry anywhere. In our culture, we see the opposite: the people with the most abundance have the least time, because they are so busy working. On either side of the spectrum, we have to be able to make and enjoy time for the things that serve us most.

Remember that it is also important to block time in a more long-term way, such as on the scale of a year or a lifetime. And what are the experience or events that are meaningful for you to do? Can you block time in your year to go on a vacation, a trip, or even to attend the Mountain Experience or Freedom Experience? What are the events that you want to experience in your life that will add meaning and depth to it? How can you change or work around your schedule to create these experiences?