Saturday, October 8, 2011

Being Intentional with Your Time

We all have free time. The question is, how do we choose to spend it? As part of this series on intentional living, I've collected some thoughts to ponder about how you manage your time.

Activities: Do I regularly take time for an activity or hobby I enjoy? Do I feel pressured to always have something to do? Am I able to say no to unhealthy demands on my time? Do I feel obligated to join committees, activities, or clubs that I don't actually enjoy?

Quiet Time: Do I take time for myself when I need it? Am I able to be silent, at least for a minute, every day? Do I appreciate moments of quiet as they happen (driving to pick up a child, folding laundry, taking a shower)? Is there anything I want to change in my daily routine to bring more peace into my life?

Sleep: Do I get enough sleep each night to feel well-rested? Do my family's sleep arrangements meet all of our needs? Do I have a night-time routine that helps me quiet my mind and fall asleep more easily?

Chores: Do I have realistic expectations of what I can accomplish in a day? Am I content with the division of labor in my home? How do I determine what needs to be done? Do I strive to meet others' standards or simply to make my home welcoming? Are there chores I can do less frequently?

Free Time: Am I happy with how I spend my free time? Can I prioritize my tasks so that I can enjoy my free time without feeling guilty? Are there changes I can make in my environment to make my free time more rewarding (making the computer, craft supplies, books, etc. more or less accessible)?

Much of our time is spent living with others. Stay tuned on Monday for questions about intentional relationship-building!


  1. These are great questions that I often struggle with. I tend to feel guilty if I am not being productive, and then I crash and spend a couple of evenings vegging out in front of the TV. I'm getting better at realizing when I really need quiet time, and enjoying it rather than feeling guilty, but your questions are great to remember.

    One of the things that has helped me is making to-do lists, because then when I have a free moment I can look at the list and say "do I want to cross something off the list, or do I just want to relax?" There are also things on the list that I can get my son to help me with, and he loves being a helper.

    And I really feel like I deserve the free time once everything is crossed off. But that doesn't happen often.

  2. I have had to learn some of those lessons the hard way. When I do too much and don't get enough sleep, my body will rebel, and have a flair up then I am forced to slow down and set priorities, do only that which I enjoy, sometimes not even do that, and to most importantly, SLEEP and eat.

  3. Gaby - Thanks for stopping by and for sharing this on FB! I love list making. Like you, I find it very satisfying and freeing to cross stuff off. Glad you enjoyed this!

    Lisa - Do you ever get the feeling God is shaking his head at us? "When will they learn?!" :-)