your calendar either transforms you into the person you love or the person you hate.
I never realized what a transformative tool the calendar was until several months ago.
How you plan your days is how you plan your life, and boy did my calendar tell me the truth on how I was living.
My calendar used to be FILLED to the brim with all the things. I would add events, parties, and activities to my calendar without thinking twice. But, I slowly started to realize that a FULL calendar doesn't necessarily equate to a FULFILLING LIFE.
This is when I decided to use my calendar as a tool to transform my life, instead of a To-Do List.
Here are some of the simple steps I took to make sure my calendar was serving me, instead of the other way around.
1. Identify your current VALUES.
I know every season of life is different, so choose what you value the most in whatever stage you're currently experiencing.
This current season of life my VALUES are:
2. Align your values with the events on your calendar.
Before scheduling or saying "yes" to an event, I have to make sure it aligns with my values. If it doesn't align with my current values, I know it's not serving me in this season of life, and I kindly say "no thanks."
If I'm still unsure about putting an event on my calendar, I listen to my gut instincts, which usually steers me in the direction that feels right for me. Am I enthusiastic about this event or just "eh" about this event? If it's not a "HELL YES, let's do this thing!", then I know it doesn't belong on my calendar at this time.
3. Create a system to label your events and values on your calendar. This allows you to have an aeriel view of how you're spending your days.
Each month I label the activities that I have chosen intentionally to put on my calendar. I also identify the value associated with that activity, so it allows me to see how my values are being addressed each month.
I made a simple VALUES KEY (see photos below) identifying my current values and symbols to represent each individual value. The symbols (circle, star, and heart) serve as a labeling system, so I can clearly see what my month looks like as a whole. If I'm not happy with how my month is looking (how I'm spending my time), then I make the necessary changes so that it's filling me up, and not weighing me down.
I'm currently in the process of adding GROWTH as a new value to my life (and now my calendar), because I want to intentionally plan more experiences that are out of my comfort zone. I have a small list of things I've always wanted to try, but have yet to take action because I'm slightly scared. Scared of the unknown, scared of change, scared of just doing things differently from my normal routine. For example, I've always talked about doing a health retreat (a retreat involving physical movement, good food and good people), but the thought of traveling to a place (most likely by myself) and meeting new people seems slightly intimidating to me. But, I'm finally ready to step into the unknown and get my growing pains on.
I'm finally ready to make growth a priority in my life, which means it must be on my calendar.
4. Repeat this process every month because your values will change!
Every month I make sure to revisit my values, to make sure they are still serving me. If changes need to be made, then I simply edit and revise my values so my calendar is aligned to what I truly want out of life.
This process is a beautiful, never-ending journey of constant practice! I'm always practicing to intentionally say "yes" to the activities that align with my values, and saying "no, thanks" to the activities that won't serve me. I try to engage in this practice without guilt or shame, because I know the person I want to become and how precious my life truly is.
Do you want your calendar to be less about what you want to get done, and more about who you want to become?
I hope these simple steps help you get started with spending your time towards a direction that truly SERVES YOU and the person you want to become.
Always craving health + happiness,