I think most of us are in the same boat here.
Time is precious, and there’s never enough of it. One of the most common excuses for not getting our musical work done is “I just don’t have the time.”
I get it. Really, I do.
I have a full time job. I’m involved with several things in my church. I’m newly married and own a house. I have commitments. It’s tough for me to spend time on the side working on music, while trying to balance everything else that’s going on in life.
I’m no expert in time management, but I have learned a few things along the way that have been very helpful. If you want to know how to start reclaiming control of your time, read on.
Decide what’s important
This may seem like a no-brainer, but the most important thing to learn in time management is simply this:
Not everything is going to get done.
You only have so many hours in a day, and only so many days in a week. That being said, there is plenty of time to do the things that are important to you. If you’re having trouble finding time in the studio, It’s probably for one of two reasons:
- Your time is being taken up by less important things
- Studio work is not as important to you as you think it is
If the answer for you is #2, don’t worry about it! You may enjoy spending time in the studio, but if other things in life are truly more important to you, then the most fulfilling thing for you to do is to continue on with those things.
However, probably most of us are in category #1. Which brings me to my next point…
Don’t find time, make time
Here’s the thing: we can always make time for things we want to do. Don’t believe me? Think about what happens in a typical week for you. I bet there are plenty of things that you manage to make time for. How many hours per week do you spend watching TV? Surfing the web? Browsing Youtube? Reading blogs? Engaging in other hobbies?
See what I mean?
The point is, once you’ve decided what things are most important to you, schedule those things in first. That way, if you run out of time for other things, that’s ok, because they’re less important anyway.
It seems pretty straightforward, but in reality this can be very difficult. Here’s why:
Some important things will not get done
Let’s be honest. The ideal situation would be that all of the important things get done, and all of the non-important things do not get done. Unfortunately, that is not usually the case. I’ve personally found that in order to get the most important things done, some of the less important things have to get dropped. See what I’m saying? Sometimes, important things do not get done, because we spend our time doing other things that are more important to us.
This can be a tough one to swallow. At least it was for me. But once I came to grips with it, time management became much easier and less stressful. I found that even though I wasn’t getting some things done which I thought were important, I felt satisfied and at peace because I was getting things done that were more important.
You can do it!
So there you go. The topic of time management is one that I find pretty fascinating. I’m planning to write a lot more about this in the future. But the thing is, if studio time is truly important enough, you can make time for it. Look closely at your weekly schedule. Think about what things tend to take up your time that are not as important. Start scheduling in studio time before that time starts getting eaten up by other things.
If studio time isn’t as high on the priority list, then don’t feel bad about not spending time there! Do what is important and most fulfilling for you, and when you do get some time to work in the studio, enjoy it, and consider it a blessing.
Have any of your own tips on deciding what’s important and how to schedule your time most effectively? Leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you.