Nothing is more valuable than time. Money can be lost and made again, but time spent (or wasted) can never be reclaimed. Therefore, don’t give your time away too easily. Instead, focus on what is important and/or pleasurable, and ignore the rest. One technique (perhaps the only one I have mastered myself!) is to learn to delegate as much as possible. Instead of asking: “How can I do this task?” try asking: “How can this task get done?” and accept that good enough is good enough. Forget perfectionism!
Try to touch paperwork only once. If a task takes less than five or ten minutes—whatever it is—deal with it right then and there. This reduces stress, since it won’t be in the back of your mind, and it is also more efficient, since you won’t have to re-read or re-evaluate the same task(s) again in the future. Also, avoid the “Tyranny of the Urgent” by dealing with important matters before they become urgent. Forget procrastination!
This last year has made me aware that I need more time with friends, more exercise and more fresh air. A couple of years ago I offered to host a “Walkie-Talkie” group, but the project never got started. Perhaps we could try again in 2019. My suggestion is to meet at “Bread and Co.” in Vila Nova Conceição on Wednesday mornings at 8am and, weather permitting, walk in Ibirapuera Park for about an hour. I need to be home by 9:30, but others can come and go at their own convenience. The idea would be to provide free English conversation for friends (and friends of friends) wanting to improve their language skills whilst also improving the general fitness of us all, native speakers included.
Finally, psychological research has found that starting the day outdoors can result in the rest of the day being happier and more productive. Therefore, a mid-week “Walkie-Talkie” session would be time well spent. Please join me by contacting PenelopeFreeland@gmail.com
Penny Freeland is a British qualified counsellor and coach who also provides pro-bono support to British Society members in exchange for charitable donations to be given directly to the “Fundação Britânica de Beneficência”.