Galvin and Associates

The Other 8 Hours



Why not be as intentional about your free time as you are about your time spent working? This doesn’t mean you have to work hard at relaxing, but being intentional about how you spend this precious time. You don’t have much of it.

For those who work full-time, their time each day is typically rationed as eight hours of sleeping, eight hours of working, and eight hours of free time. But oops, commute time is deducted from free time. Exercise and meal preparation is deducted from free time. Paying bills is deducted from free time. Your free time can easily slip away from you.

Many people say that want work-life balance. But if they are intentional at work and impulsive at home, then they will never find that balance they desperately need. Here are some ways to get control over your other eight hours.

1. Plan your free time on the same calendar as your work time
Some people have a disciplined habit of scheduling meetings and tasks at work, then work off of slips of paper at home. Why not be as organized at home as at work? With shared work calendars, some people cannot put personal appointments on work calendars, so they will have to develop a home calendar solution.

2. Keep a personal project list
Keep all of your home, family, and personal projects on one list. It may feel overwhelming when you first put it all on paper. Don’t get discouraged. List everything that needs to get done. List everything you are committed to accomplishing. Then keep reviewing our list.

3. Engage others in your new approach to free time
Let the other significant people in your life know what you are trying to do. Plan the week with your spouse. Share your personal calendar online with significant others. They will then be able to help you spend your free time wisely.

4. Schedule time with friends
I regret that I haven’t been able to spend time with some dear friends of ours. But guess what? I didn’t schedule it and it didn’t happen all by itself. Are you intentional about spending time with certain other key people?

5. Establish set times for exercise
You can walk in the early morning, go to the gym at noon, or workout after getting off the train. If you embed these times in your schedule you will be more likely to get the exercise you need.

6. Pursue a hobby
You can dabble at something or buy supplies and never seem to be able to get time to do it. You can let everything else claim your free time, or you can claim it and structure some protected time to engage in something that taps into how God has wired you.

If you work full-time, you only get eight hours of free time a weekday and you have a crushing demand from others on how to use that time. Why not get intentional about how you use the other eight hours?

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