Along our journey we all get to know people who we would consider leaders and want to learn from them. Most of the leaders I have come in contact with along my journey are those that are very protective with their schedule. This, I definitely don’t disagree with. Being protective with your time for your family is necessary, but what I am talking about is the time spent outside of family time. What I disagree with is when “leaders” won’t give anyone and everyone at least some of their time.
I believe this one difference separates the real leaders from those who think they are leaders. Why is this? It goes back to my definition of leadership. Each and every one of us have our own definition of leadership and thoughts on what leadership should look like. Most people think of the act of leadership as this huge event that only happens a few times within a year, decade, or even in a lifetime. My definition of leadership looks more like love than anything else. Leadership is the selfless act of impacting others through your life. That’s where leadership happens. So, what does that mean for all of us? Leadership happens all the time. It happens on a daily basis.
How can you change this view in your life right now?
You can begin giving anyone and everyone time in your schedule. I hear a lot of leaders say they only give time to those who are important to them or that can benefit them in some way. Well, that might be the most selfish thing I’ve ever heard. When you give something to get something in return, that’s not any part of leadership, that’s manipulation. Let’s call it what it is.When you give something to get something in return, that’s not leadership, that’s manipulation. Click To Tweet
As discussed in the last episode, my view of time management is changing, and it starts here. This view is one that not many people have adopted, but it may be the most important view change you can have on time management and your schedule. Why don’t more people think this way? People aren’t aware how much selfishness can ruin their ability to lead with their lives. We all have to want and learn to fight selfishness with everything we have within us and let selflessness take action in all of our lives.
So, how do you actually achieve a leadership lifestyle with your schedule, impact more people, and begin to manage your time better? You can start by doing these 3 things:
1. Streamline the meetings you are having already.
We have all been in those meetings that cover more things than are needed. These are those meetings that are twenty minutes in and the realization hits you that you are in the wrong place at the right time. You then look at your watch an hour later and realize there are no real action items from the meeting you are in. It is all talk and you don’t have anything to actually go and do with it. With every meeting time you have in your schedule, know what you want to do with it. No, not every personal meeting needs an agenda, but know that you want to just sit and talk in those times. With every meeting you have that covers business, you do need an agenda to make the best use of your time. Use bullet points, convey what you need to and then get on to what matters most; relationships. Stop covering things that don’t need to be covered in meetings, and instead get to know people on a more personal level. You already have the time you need, but you may just not be using it in the best possible way. Use your time more effectively and impact the lives of more people in return.
2. If it doesn’t effect your relationships in a negative way, meet with the same people less often than you are right now if possible.
Some of those weekly meetings you are having with mentors, friends, and acquaintances might be more effective if you changed those meetings to once every two weeks or once per month. You can use that extra time to meet with other people who you can pour life into and you will also have more things to cover within each time you meet with someone new if there is more time in between each meeting. You can still create meaningful relationships, even if times that you meet aren’t as frequent. You will increase productivity as a result and impact more lives. Again, this is just another way you can lead more effectively through your life.
3. Turn unnecessary meetings into phone calls or emails, instead.
Reevaluate the reasons that you get together in the first place. If it is more out of duty than creating relationships with people, try to turn those into emails or phone calls. If these meetings can easily and effectively be done via a different form of communication, then by all means mix it up a bit. Maybe it’s time to rethink the process and not just do it that way because it’s the way that it has always be done. Use technology well in your situations and connect over web chat, phone, or email instead. If you can save on travel time alone, it’s worth it in order to be able to have more time back to impact the lives of others.
I hope these three points help you in your journey to getting back more time to live life with more purpose and impact. Yes, your time is precious, but people are more precious. If people need you, be there. And remember, the people who can do something in return for you aren’t the only people who deserve your time. Use these action items to love anyone and everyone with your time.
Take a look at your view of time management, do these three things, and make more time for others, today.