Time is a non-renewable resource, when it’s gone, it’s gone. And we all know there are only 24 hours in a day, but the idea of getting better at time management is still not a priority for a lot of us! (Well, at least not for me…until now!)
Anna Dearmon Kornick is a time management coach, wife, and mom who helps busy professionals and business owners master time management so they can stop feeling overwhelmed and start spending time on what matters most.
She’s gonna walk you through how to figure out your core values and how you can use those to map out your calendar each week. Spoiler alert: pizza is part of the plan.
Time management does a lot more than make things predictable. Even for those of us who love to live life “on the edge”, time management eliminates much of the “decision fatigue” we take on from otherwise, scattered daily activities.
Trust me. My husband and I both suffered from decision fatigue in our day: too many things to navigate (aka businesses, jobs, kiddos, LIFE), led to complete overwhelm.
Anna helps us to see that time management gives us added reassurance that certain things are already taken care of. Eliminating decisions and providing us with more space and, go figure, TIME.
Simply carving out 30 minutes, once a day every week, to sit and map out even a few decisions in your week will make all the difference.
Anna has her 30-minute “plan sesh” on Sundays (although you should pick the day that works for you!), where she lights up her favorite candle and maps out some key parts in her week…all of which includes a consistent pizza night on Sundays.
Sound amazing? Yah, that’s exactly how I felt about it.
Imagine waking up, barely functioning enough to get your coffee and you realize, your toddler’s clothes are already laid out. A well-planned decision you had cleverly carved out during that 30 quick minutes days prior.
One less thing to worry about, which equals more energy to spend in the present moment.
From pizza Sundays to wash towels Wednesdays, Anna has these decisions set so that she knows each week, these extra things are done.
Picking out clothes on Sundays. Don’t have to think about it. The meal plan done on Sundays. Don’t have to think about it. Towels washed on Wednesdays. Done. Don’t have to think about it.
Choose something you can set up ahead of time to create a routine. Perhaps it’ll be sandwich Saturdays?
What immediately comes to mind when you think about “time management”? Calendars, schedules, getting to places “on time? sound familiar?
This is exactly where my head was until I got chatting with Anna about the core of time management…and here’s the KICKER: –it doesn’t start with your calendar.
In working with loads of biz professionals, Anna has found that many of them tend to think the way I did. They come to her with questions like “can you fix my calendar?”
Can you plan my day so I’m better with time?” While these are all valid questions, they don’t actually matter without one vital piece in place: your core values.
Time management, as Anna puts it, is really heart management. It starts with knowing what matters most, knowing what your values are, knowing what your hopes and dreams are too.
That really drives what those values are as well as having goals, having something that you’re working toward.
Anna gives the example that if you’ve got a goal to grow a podcast or grow a business or, you know, get booked out with your clients, then you’ve got to be strategic about how you spend those 168 hours in a week.
Doing what you love, what you value, what’s at your core, will help you to prioritize those things in your day-to-day activities and this will eliminate the feeling of sheer overwhelm.
Let’s get REAL for a minute. If you were to say “here’s a lesson on core values” most of us would run for the hills and, perhaps, the most recent episode of Housewives SLC (in my case).
Core values are not the “frosting” most people go for when trying to figure out their time management issues. However, as Anna indicates, core values are much easier (and far less boring) than your last Psychology Professor had indicated.
Core values are what essentially drives us as human beings. They are what we prioritize, what we see, feel and believe are important.
Therefore, if your core values are not in alignment with the 37 things on your to-do list, you’ll spend most of your days, weeks, and months wondering where the time went.
“When we really dive into our core values, and how important they are at directing pretty much every decision that we make in our lives, it’s the best starting point for creating a routine we love.”
The best thing about core values is that you don’t even have to come up with them. You don’t even “choose” them. You already have them.
Anna shares that we’re actually “living them every. single. day. but you may not have clearly articulated them”. We’re often so busy running around, we may not even be aware of them.
How, in the midst of the day, when things are so crazy, do you even find the TIME to come up with what your “core values” are?
Here’s how you start. Anna recommends making a list of 100 things that you want to do in your lifetime. Now before you flip the page and click off to something else, I get it. 100 THINGS? How do you even begin to do that?
Think of these 100 dreams as a list of 100 goals as well. This could include travel, writing books, reading, it could include watching every single episode of Real Housewives. This could include being a real housewife, or even things that you want to learn.
But here’s the catch. You’ve got to be specific. For example, don’t just write travel, write Bali, Hawaii or any other dream destinations. Same with education or writing. Specify exactly what you want to do.
Then, you’ll start to see themes emerge within your list.
There are different themes and categories that emerge like, “oh!” family pops up a lot or travel, pops up a lot or learning and education pops up a lot.
And so you start to recognize these themes or these dreams themes as I like to call them. From there, you kind of just start coming up with words, like the words that you want to use to describe yourself or to describe your dreams.
Go ahead and brainstorm that big old list of words. Then, once you’ve got words on your list, such as adventure because you want to travel or, perhaps, honesty and integrity because family and relationships are huge, then you can start cutting your list down.
Remember, we’re making core values and in doing so, we want them to be super meaningful and intentional. So, you start cutting and you start ranking them in order of importance.
You’ll be left with this list of 7 to 10, maybe 12 max concepts, things that really capture who you are and what means the most to you.
Then, there they are, staring right at you: a reflection of who you are and all of your greatness.
Now that you have this amazing list, many people often ask Anna, what’s next? That’s when she shares that the power is in the process. The power of your core values is in figuring out what they are.
Put them up on the wall, you can tattoo them on your arm. If you want to, you can put them on up on your website. Like I did just going through the action and the activity of that discernment, you know, like really thinking about is this me?
The power lies in core values because they become the measure to make decisions easier.
They become like the test for everything. Like, does this goal align with my core values? Does this business opportunity, does this person align with my core values? But if you don’t have those articulated everything’s blurry and it makes it harder to decide.
Ensure that these things truly align with your core values so you’re less likely to feel overwhelmed by decisions and, therefore, able to do more in your day!
The idea that you have to know what your values are before you can start really planning your life seems like something I should have known.
But honestly, I’ve never really thought about taking the time to really sit down and come up with my core values. Probably because I’m a teacher and that sounds like something they’d make us do at a professional development day and I’d be so annoyed by it.
But if I can do it at home with a glass of wine, (actually, I’ve been drinking White Russians lately….) then I just might be down to give it some thought.
You gotta figure out your values! Make that list of 100 things and then start to figure out your words. If you nail those values down, the other stuff will fall into place a lot easier.
And, you should grab Anna’s worksheet to get you planning out your week. After this conversation, I’m feeling like it could be fun to wake up on Sunday, drink coffee, and plan my week. WHO AM I!?!? Anna, what have you done to me!?! haha!
We dive into our Myers-Briggs personality (seriously, have you taken this test before? DO it!), we talk mom expectations, a bit on spanking kiddos (or not!), sticker charts, dads who cook, and if you can believe it, MORE! So push play on the episode above to get the full scoop. And don’t forget to check out more from Anna!
Want even more goodies for your ears? Check out the Imperfect Party Playlist here and find out what song Anna picked!