Here's how to fill your days with what matters most

One of the reasons I started a business was so I could focus on what matters most in my life.

Getting to work on projects that make an impact, living life on my own schedule, and having the time and flexibility to spend with my family—that was the dream.

But instead I found myself exhausted and stressed, jumping from one task to another and feeling like I was running around in circles.

Was I spending my days doing what matters most? I didn’t even know any more.

After going down the rabbit hole of productivity, I started to find ways to create the life and business I wanted. I’m a work-in-progress. But here are three things that help me keep my days filled with what matters most:

#1. Figure out what matters most to you.

I mean, duh.

You can go deep with this and figure out your values and your purpose, but keep it simple to start. Jot down a list of what makes you happiest, brings you meaning, and energizes you.

I find breaking my life into categories like relationships, business, health, community, and personal helps.

#2. Track your time.

I used to resist this so much. But tracking my time for a couple of weeks every few months really helps to keep me on track and keeps me honest: Am I actually prioritizing the areas I say I value the most?

I use Toggl for this, but there are lots of apps out there to make it easy.

#3. Create a model day or week.

What would your ideal day look like?

Get really specific here. Actually map it out, hour to hour, filling your day with the activities that matter most to you. I create it as a Google calendar that I can overlay on my actual week when needed.

While you might not be able to live your best day every day, you can’t go wrong by focusing on what matters most to you. After all, as Annie Dillard says:

How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.

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