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Passionate Flex Time

This week I was reminded of how much TV I watch. Everything I read tells me that it is bad for me – a real waste of time. I choose to look at it a little differently. I use TV time in 3 ways, as transition time, percolating time and flex time. Plus I learn stuff when I watch.

This week I also welcomed a new niece into the world. For me, that looked like having my 4.7 year old nephew for 48 hours. My brother and sister-in-law thought it would be fun to watch the control freak in the family deal with the super smart and active preschooler cope with a big change in his life.

You might be wondering how these two things are related, or just how much TV did I let the kid watch to get my work done?

Actually, I simply did a little planning and the gave up most of my TV time. I went from watching ~4 hours and evening to 2 episodes of Scooby-Do, one featuring Bat Man and Robin, in 3 days.

I wanted to share this example to show you how picking one of your passions (yes, I’m passionate about TV) and scheduling plenty – more than enough – time to enjoy it without stress, and at a leisurely pace can help you be a better scheduler. Making sure that my passion isn’t overlooked in the day to day is much easier if I put it on the schedule in the first place. Understand?

So yes, I watch 30+ hours of TV most weeks. Are you surprised that I also run a successful business, workout at least 4 days a week, and get 7 hours of sleep a night, and sit at my dining table to eat my meals? How do I make that work?

1.  Transition Time – Give attention to your passion between tasks, projects, or time blocks. Give your brain a chance to reset and refresh. Even for just 15 minutes attending to something you love, (writing, kid, TV) will provide a charge and let you keep going.

2. Percolating Time – Take a problem you are trying to solve, a project you are creating and then go work on the thing you love instead. Your subconscious will begin to solve the parts you haven’t yet figured out. So that when you go focus on the project, it comes together practically effortlessly.

That can actually be a time save in the long run. I can either stare at the computer screen waiting for a blog post to write itself for a couple of hours, and feel bad about why I can’t seem to write the whole time, so it takes even longer, or I can take my topic, and go watch 30 minutes of a favorite show, then go crank out the post in about 20 minutes. Saving myself several hours and a stressful day. Understand?

3.  Flex Time – Back to my week. When you schedule ample time for your passions, it is easy to temporarily give up some of those hours when an opportunity comes up. Your will feel rewarded and calm because you know that you get to do both without giving up either entirely.

Always weigh the opportunity against the activity you are passionate about and you will also stop saying yes to things that actually hold you back. Would I rather spend time with my nephew or watch NCIS – nephew time! Understand?

Swap out your passion time first so the routines and systems that work to run your business and home continue to function. Also know that the swap is temporary, and that most passion projects are not on a deadline and you will get back to it as soon as the opportunity has passed, or that you can catch that show later on demand.

A special thanks to my nephew Peter for contributing his favorite words – actually and understand to this post. That wasn’t too awkward was it?

I’d love to hear what you are passionate about. Comment below or on the More than Organized Facebook page.

  1. Tricia
    Tricia05-21-2013

    I love this idea of incorporating one’s passion and scheduling time for it. I love being outdoors, quietly watering in the morning and observing the seasonal changes. I find it very relaxing. So, when I’m working at home, I like to give myself short breaks to be outdoors for a few minutes. This also keeps me from getting stiff from sitting too long.
    Thanks for the info.

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