Rhythm is commonly recognized as an element of design, but it is also a necessary ingredient to establishing a sense of order and ease in our lives.

When you repeat the same actions in more or less the same way every time, you have found a rhythm. Rhythms are the repeated notes that hold our life together, the pillars of order that hold up our days and weeks.  The tide comes in; the tide goes out.  The sun rises; the sun sets.  You wake up; you fall asleep.

So what does rhythm have to do with managing your time?

Ever since my business took off, I’ve had so many new and exciting projects on my plate.  While this is exactly as I want it, expansion can feel overwhelming.

But it doesn’t have to. Managing your time is an art form and once you learn the basic rhythms, you can leave overwhelm in the dust and embrace the life you deserve.

So how can you harness the power of rhythm? Here are a few ways that you can incorporate rhythm into your life to help manage your time as effectively as possible.

  1. If you are a parent, rhythm can help you create a sense of calm during otherwise chaotic transitions. The power of rhythm transformed my life when my son was three months old and waking up every hour of the night.  In order to bring some sanity to my new-mama days, I clung to our nightly routine: bath, massage, diaper, book, nursing, the same way, the same order, every night.  This helped my son fall asleep more easily, and as a result, we both slept more soundly at night.  Later, when my son was three, I created our after-dinner mantra—“pee-pee, hands, and teeth”—to convince them that brushing their teeth was fun.
  1. Use rhythm to develop healthy habits such as exercising, eating well, or creating a restful bedtime. Rhythm is the foundation of habit.  We get used to doing the same things the same way, over and over again.  While sometimes this can mean we’re in a rut, we can actually harness this principle to create change.

Next time you are trying to create a new habit, think first about how you can add an element of rhythm and predictability to what you’re trying to do.  For example, if you are challenged to find time for exercise, set the intention of doing one simple stretch when you step out of bed every morning.  Rhythm has helped me form the habits of flossing my teeth, making my son’s breakfast at night, and washing the dishes.

It takes commitment to establish a new rhythm, but once you do, you will discover that what were once dreaded chores can become still points during your days.  When you do the same thing in the same way over and over again, you ultimately no longer have to think about it. The beauty of learning to manage your time means that routine tasks get done without too much effort so that you can focus on more important and exciting tasks.  

  1. Access rhythm to relieve stress during tough moments. For example, perhaps you have to give a series of talks that tie your stomach in knots.  Figure out what would ease your mind before the talks, and each time you are preparing to speak, do the same calming actions.  Perhaps you feel your feet, take five deep breaths, and think of a time when you felt amazing.  By using a soothing rhythm, you tell your brain that you are okay, and you remind yourself to relax.
  1. Block your time throughout your week and schedule similar activities together. Block out the same time each week to do the activities that you do on a weekly basis but which are not otherwise scheduled, and schedule like activities back-to-back.  For example, I have created weekly times to write my newsletter, meet with clients, and network.  Organizing my schedule in this rhythmic way has helped me to manage my time with a sense of calm even when my schedule is packed full.

Where in your life do you think that rhythm would help you?  Imagine you had the “perfect” rhythm. What would that look like?  What would you be doing?  What is one tiny step that you can take towards creating a rhythm that makes managing your time effortless?

Feel like you’re pretty good at time management but still can’t find the space to get everything done? Do you struggle with striking a work-life balance that fulfills you? Sign up for a free Discovery Session today—get clear on your next steps and how to truly live your calling.

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