Have you ever felt like there are not enough hours in the day to accomplish everything that you wish to accomplish? I know that I have often felt that way. There is so much to do and only so much time to utilize. We all get the same amount of time each day. 24 hours. How can we make the most out of those 24 hours?
Ephesians 5:15-17 says, “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore, do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” There is much to notice in this passage, but let me draw your attention to a phrase in the middle of it, “making the best use of the time.” Have you ever felt like you have not made the best use of your time at the end of a day? I certainly have! I believe that this problem is widespread and so I want to share 4 things that I have implemented in my life to help achieve balance.
1 – Prioritize activities in your life. Do first things first. I once watched a short video of Paul Washer speaking about how to overcome the busyness of life and what he mentioned to counteract it was setting priorities.
(Click below to view video of Paul washer speaking to this issue of busyness in our culture, and the importance of setting priorities:)
An example of a priority that I set in my own life is time with God. This is not to say that I get up at the crack of dawn every morning and spend three hours praying and reading the Bible, but I do aim to get up early and meet with God before the busy schedule of the day begins. I have found that when I do this, the rest of my day goes better and my perspective and attitude are better. Ravi Zacharias said, “Your greatest battle you will face in this life is your daily appointment with God, keep it, or every other battle will become so much greater.”
2 – Schedule your day. Don’t freak out if you are someone who is spontaneous and not fond of planning. This can be a loose schedule. The main thing is to have some level of organization in how you approach your day and activities. Because I am in ministry, my schedule needs to be flexible, but if I had no structure to how I approach my workday and my family life, I would go crazy.
As I already mentioned, getting up early has had to be a part of my schedule. For some people, they may thrive more with staying up later than everyone else and not getting up early. Figure out what works for you and do your best to stick with it. Also, when you get off schedule it’s no big deal, just get back on it as soon as you can.
3 – Multitask. Even if you think you can’t, you can. I’m not saying to sacrifice quality of your effort, but to find areas where you can truly multitask. For me, I have found I can pray while I’m working out or driving. If I’m preparing a meal for my family, I can also have them hanging out near me so we can talk about our day while I’m working. If I’m on hold when I’m talking to customer service I can put the phone on speaker and work on returning emails.
4 – Cut out worthless activities. When I was a kid, my uncle and I used to watch cartoon TV shows late at night and he used to say, “sometimes you’ve just gotta watch something stupid.” I’m not saying that everything has to be cut out of your life that is not productive. But most of us can and should tale a serious look at how we spend our time and find some things that are unnecessary to give us more time for the things that are important.
I hope this is helpful if you are trying to achieve a better balance in your life. Our time can be used well or wasted. God does want us to make the best use of the time he gives us. When asked what he would do differently if he could do it all again Billy Graham said, “For one thing, I would speak less and study more, and I would spend more time with my family.”