Five Practices You Can Use to Maximize Your Time
A Different Time Management Philosophy – Part 9
When it comes to planning and managing our time wisely, we must be able to define what that looks like. This lesson has been inspired by one of our pastors, our main and local church pastor that is, Chris Hodges. Not only is he a pastor but a leader who is very fluent in personal development. That word personal development for me means how we get to the next level. Chris Hodges has definitely been a great influence to helping Pamela and me get to the next level.
Today, we have 5 principles based on ideas we’ve gained from Pastor Chris’ influence. These ideas will help us grow in how we organize and execute the week we desire to have. Whenever one needs to reach a destination using a map or some type of navigational system, there are two coordinates that are a must: 1) current position and 2) destination. If you want to achieve whatever, you must be able to not only identify your current location, but define the goal you seek to achieve. With that said, let’s get to these five principles to help you reach your next level destination.
- Renew yourself first.
“We don’t Sabbath [refresh ourselves] at the end of the week because we’re tired, we sabbath at the beginning of the week so we don’t get tired.” – Chris Hodges
Most of us will agree that after one has been depleted, replenishing is a must. What I had never given thought to is that the replenishing process could be done in a different order. We’ve always saved it until last. To carry this thought a little further, we save it to the end when we have to squeeze it in or use what little remaining time we have left for it. Many times we have to forgo it altogether. Instead of saving this action to the end, we should start our week out this way. Start your week with an intentional period of refreshing.
We begin our time of refreshing Saturday evening, continuing through Sunday. We block off this time for relaxing, resting, and spiritual renewal. This way we start our week on a full tank so to speak. We’ve already filled our tank up for the journey that’s ahead of us for the week. We don’t start our week already full speed ahead, but we start out of a place of rest.
- Know what you’re supposed to be doing. (Purpose)
“Define your purpose and responsibilities.” – Chris Hodges
We didn’t realize this early in life, but we now know it and live this way. When you don’t know what you’re supposed to be doing, you’ll end up doing anything and everything else. When you’ve not given thought to what you should be doing it rarely ever gets accomplished. Sit down and write on paper what you believe in your heart you are supposed to be doing, at this time. Next, draft out your responsibilities. The saying is true, “out of sight, out of mind.” Always have your sights on your purpose and responsibilities or you will never see it come in fruition. This is next level stuff!
- Identify your priorities.
“Prioritize [your] big rocks.” – Chris Hodges
I personally like this a lot and we will go into more detail later in this series. In the meantime, you must place the priorities on your calendar first. The only way to do this is by identifying your priorities. My priorities are not your priorities. Your spouse’s priorities may not be your priority. Get your priorities down somewhere so that you can plan for them. By the way, this concept is one I’ve only seen exemplified in next level people like Chris Hodges. In fact (to the left), if the people you hang around aren’t talking about their priorities, you’re hanging around people who have no plans of going to the next level. That’s normal and our messages and lessons are for people who desire more than just normal.
- Imagine your ideal workweek.
“This is what the perfect week looks like…” – Chris Hodges
We’ve heard this idea from both Michael Hyatt and Chris Hodges. Pamela and I have been using this idea for a number of years. Visualize in writing what an ideal day and an ideal week looks like for you. What would you like your week to look like, if you had it your way? You see, faith is a byproduct of what you hope for.  In other words, what would you hope your week would look like? In this way, you begin to do what it takes to align your hope, desire [destination] with your present disposition [current location]. When you envision an ideal week, you’re envisioning what your week will look like as you take it to the next level. The Bible says that a person who has no vision (foresight) will perish.  If you have no vision for your week then your week, my friend has already perished.
- Review what you’ve been doing. (Evaluate, Eliminate, and Execute)
“Nothing stays where you leave it.” – Chris Hodges
This idea is one that must become a habit and routine. Each week, we must make it a practice of reviewing what we’ve been doing. I perform this task in what I call my 30-day rolling calendar preparations. I review what I’ve done with my time over the last few weeks so that I can make better plans for my next 30-days. This time of reviewing helps me determine how well my processes are working, helps me set margin, remove the unnecessary items, and prepare to use the time I have as best I can. Your life when left unchecked will drift off course. Therefore, you need a way to reset it when it does. Unlike children playing on the beach who might drift yards down the coast, as adults we don’t always have someone there to stop us when we’re drifting. Therefore, we need something we intentionally put in place that can help us stop when drifting begins.
Can you think of people you know who’ve been drifting? They were on target, but now they’re nowhere near where they used to be? Don’t let this be you.
Writing these concepts has brought me some clarity when it comes to mastering my use of the markers we call time. Often we simply need a reminder of what we already know. That in and of itself will stop us from taking the turns or detours that take us in an undesired direction. The only way we can improve in areas like time management and planning is by taking our eyes off those who are not good at it and place our eyes on people who are, like Pastor Chris. If you wish to achieve greatness, I encourage you to surround yourself with great people. Remember, you become what you hang around. Don’t stop here with this lesson, but take it, apply it, and get in community with others who are doing the same.
Question: how are you planning to manage your time differently than the rest?
 Hebrews 11:1 NKJV, Bible.com, accessed August 8, 2022, https://www.bible.com/bible/114/HEB.11.1.NKJV
 Proverbs 29:18 NKJV, Bible.com, accessed August 8, 2022, https://www.bible.com/bible/114/PRO.29.18.NKJV
All Scripture references used by permission, see our Scripture copyrights.