6 steps to creating the perfect week
Something I hear all the time from my clients is the complaint that, although they have the best intentions to live a balanced life in mind-body-soul, they just don’t have the time to do everything they need to. They are searching for the perfect week, but they don’t know how to create it.
They are eager to put into practice all the new tools they are learning during our coaching – journaling, yoga, meditation and more. BUT of course, (and I’m sure you’ll agree) they can’t see where to squeeze this in. The perfect week eludes them as life continues to overwhelm and chew through time.
Busy always seems to trump a perfect week.
I get it, life is already busy enough – sometimes the mere idea of trying to create ‘the perfect week’ is overwhelming. But let’s look at it this way, isn’t all the ‘busy-ness’ irrelevant if you aren’t healthy and happy to enjoy your life as you’d like too? (P.s check out my recent post on ditching the ‘busy’ attitude to life)
Today I want to share with you one of the most life-changing yet super simple tips I have. This is something I’ve shared with many clients with great success. This is the way to find the time you desire to focus on your mind-body-soul. This is how you create the perfect* week you want, week on week.
*Regarding ‘perfect’ – there is no such thing, let’s just make that clear. I simply choose this word to highlight that you can live and experience your days the way you want to, rather than being pushed and pulled by the chaos of life.
6 Steps to creating the perfect week (you’ll need a pen and paper for this task!)
Note down your ‘non-negotiables’ and ‘nice to haves’!
a) On your piece of paper write down, what I call, your ‘Level One Non negotiables’.
What are Level One Non-Negotiables?
These are things in your life that you cannot negotiate on. For example – your job (if you don’t show up you won’t get paid!) Or getting your kids off to school. Or caring for your elderly parents and so on.
b) Next write down your Level Two Non-negotiables:
What do you NEED to include in your life for feel healthy, alive, strong, balanced happy?
Is it daily meditation? A walk/run. Hitting the gym. Journaling. Reading with a cup of tea alone after work. Yoga? Time to cook/shop?
This is the stuff makes you feel SANE. And is just as important (if not more) as your job and any other obligatory items in your life.
c) Finally write down your nice-to-haves. For me that is ‘social’ time with girlfriends. Sometimes I need it and it becomes a non-negoatiable, other times It’s just something I’d love to do, but isn’t as VITAL (more on that in a minute)
Plan it out!
Open up a excel document and create a table with 7 columns – Monday through to Sunday.
Split up each column by the hour or periods of time. (You can download an example one I’ve created here!)
Schedule in your week. Work in BLOCKS of time.
Begin by greying out time for your Level One Non-negotiables. E.g your working hours, picking up the children etc. Include travelling to and fro – mark out the WHOLE time required.
Next, do the same with your Level 2 non-negotiables and again for your ‘nice-to haves’. E.g. When do you normally practice yoga? Ideally – is it every morning, every second afternoon? And when it comes to the ‘nice-to-haves’ do you ideally like to be social/get that massage/visit your girlfriend/have along time every Saturday afternoon?
This is your ideal weekly planner so mark it down.
Review it all.
Have you over-packed your week? Have you been a little too over-zealous with social time, or when you are rising in the morning for meditation. Be realistic. Make sure you have time to sleep and rest. Make sure you’ve scheduled in me-time. Make sure you aren’t over-committing. This is about getting healthy, remember!
Personally, I create what I call the ‘Holy Grail’ or my Ideal Weekly Planner as a saved excel document. However, week-on-week I often sit down – usually on a Sunday over a pot of tea sitting in a sunny spot on my living room floor – and flick open my iCal to gauge my week ahead. I then ‘re-do’ and plan my week out. Being mindful of my non-negotiables, meetings/appointments for the week and ultimately how I feel.
This is a quick and rough draft from Mon – Sunday where I create the ideal week for THAT week. So I am responding to what’s coming up for that week. I’m making amends for any meetings, trips away or what-not. I’m being flexible.
Finally, it’s so important to be receptive and intuitive. CHECK IN with yourself; ask what you NEED that week. E.g. Some weeks I need a lot of alone time so I’ll factor that in and pull back on social engagements or over-committing. Other times I want to get out there, see lots of people and be a little butterfly. I make time for that and start dialing and booking in plans.
Fitting in what you truly need is possible. Experiencing a perfect week is easier than you think.
It just takes organization and focused attention. This schedule is not about restriction and removing spontaneity. It’s from this structure and life-affirming discipline comes flexibility, joy and happiness… we feel better when we have the time to do what we need for our mind-body-soul.
The purpose of this schedule is so that you don’t ‘vague’ out on all the things you know are vital for your health and wellness but you often tend to ‘bump’ because life gets too overwhelming and busy.
Personally, yoga + meditation + me-time are my non-negotiables. By having this clearly outlined in my diary it is a gentle reminder that these are the things that shouldn’t be bumped – maybe other things can be instead to make space, or maybe I can see, by looking at my schedule where I can reshuffle and jig. It places me more in power – I’m driving my life, rather than life driving me.
Do this right now. Create your OWN Ideal Week and commit over the next month to doing this task weekly. Over time it’ll become easy to carve out the time for what you want to do – in the beginning we have to consciously create it and stuck it!
Love + light,
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