If you’re like me, your day fills up fast, doesn’t it? Work, errands, chores around the house. Maybe some leisure time with family and friends, if you’re lucky.
And that leaves you with a nagging list of things you never get to:
“I know I should exercise, but I just don’t have the time.”
“I’d love to learn to paint, but I’m too busy to take classes.”
“I can’t plan my day because I have too many emergencies to deal with.”
Now for the reality check. You’re not totally, completely, monumentally busy, are you?
As a friend of mine once said, if people were really as busy as they say they are, television ratings would suck.
So why is it that you have time for your favorite TV shows each week, for example, but not for exercise or planning or learning to paint?
It’s all about your Musts. There are things in your life you’ve made Musts–things you must do, no ifs, ands, or buts–and things you haven’t.
Everyone has Musts. What is something that’s a Must for you?
One example for me is flossing. I haven’t skipped a day in years. Another example is being on time for my appointments. Another example is watching the TV show, “Heroes.” Even though I don’t have TV reception in my home, I still find a way to watch this show every week!
Yet when it comes to something like exercising, it’s a different story. I have a friend who gets up at 5:40 every morning to exercise–no excuses. I’m in awe.
When you see someone with some habit you admire, and you wonder, “How do they find the time?”–the answer is they didn’t find the time, they simply made the habit an absolute MUST.
If there’s something that’s important to you that you haven’t found time for in the past, then make it Must. If it’s truly important to you, then you need to confront that fact and make it a Must.
Start by asking yourself this question: What do I need to focus on so that this feels like a MUST for me?
When I ask this question about exercise, my first answer is that I’ll be more attractive. Okay, so that’s a little superficial, but when I focus on it, I do feel more motivated to exercise.
What else can I focus on? I’d have more energy, so I’d feel more alert. When I feel energized, I enjoy life more. And with more energy, I could give more of myself to my family, friends, and clients.
What else can I focus on? I don’t have health insurance. There it is. That’s what really makes it feel like a Must for me. When I remind myself that by choosing to forego health insurance, I’ve taken complete personal responsibility for my health, that’s when exercising feels like an absolute Must.
Physical attractiveness, energy, responsibility for my health. When I don’t focus on these things, exercise feels optional. When I do focus on these things, exercise becomes a Must.
Once you’ve identified why it’s a Must, the next step is to keep that focus in your mind as often as you can. When something consistently feels like a Must, it pushes away anything else that’s less important.
And what used to seem impossible to you becomes as natural as breathing.
You can make time to do anything, as long as it feels like a Must.
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Copyright 2007 Curtis G. Schmitt