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Don't waste your leisure time!
September 18, 2012

Choose Leisure Time Commitments Wisely

It’s a start of a great new season! As this season begins, you may find yourself starting back with different clubs, enjoying some new study, work or volunteer activities, and resuming a whirlwind of kid’s school programs. For some, this season marks the start of a new life chapter, with kids leaving the nest to embark in post high school activities.

How are you spending your leisure time? This time is precious since for many, there is so little of it. No one likes the stressed feeling of being over-committed. So with this seasonal new start, check your time commitments. Do you enjoy what you are doing? Maybe it’s time to purge and eliminate those activities that you have been doing but no longer feel the same level of passion. Women often have a difficult time saying “No” when approached to volunteer with different activities. Yet, saying “No” to an added commitment means that you are saying “Yes” to other things in your life that have a higher priority. Protect the time commitments that matter, purge those that no longer matter and only add other commitments you really can manage.

This season, I checked my work schedule to see if I could expand my hospital visitation commitment with my therapy dog. Originally, my therapy dog, Beretta, and I visited our local hospital once a week. But as an empty nester, I have less laundry, food preparation and school activities to attend. So, now I have a few extra hours available, and we have added a second visit to the local Veteran’s hospital. This is a very meaningful endeavor for me, and it provides me with a second benefit—sharing my time with those in need. It is a time commitment that I enjoy with my dog and scheduled time that I protect from being swallowed up by other less important commitments. Read my latest article: Beretta's Therapy Dog work.

So as this season begins, purge those activities that no longer bring satisfaction, protect those activities that you enjoy, and add activities when time allows. Work hours—well that is another story, and unfortunately for many, that commitment can not be purged—at least not yet!

How are you spending your hours each day?

This is a great time to check out the Wheel of Life exercise and see just how you are spending the 24 hours allotted to each day. Work takes a chunk of time and sleeping takes a chunk of time. How are you spending the other 8 hours? Are you focusing attention in the areas of your life that matter most or do you think it is time for a change? Consider how these changes can have a positive impact on you and those around you.

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Enjoy and stay calm,

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