Mary Oliver’s poem, The Summer Day, does not appear in this episode but my thinking is inspired by her question: what is it you plan to do with your one wild & precious life?
In my experience we don’t ask that question often enough, instead filling our calendars — or letting our calendars be filled — by the demands of our roles.
But it’s worth asking: how will you spend your days – your one wild and precious life?
Leaders in higher ed often don’t feel in control of their days. We have so much to respond to and so many people we’re accountable to. It seems right to spend our days attending to all those things. And there are consequences to *not* attending to those things.
But it’s a challenge when being responsive to others replaces shaping our days with our own priorities. That easily turns into an entire life where instead of accomplishing what you care about most, you’ve just reacted to, and for, others.
There is a better way.
It’s not productivity hacks – although that’s part of it. It’s not purely self-care and boundary-setting – although that’s part of it. It’s not strategy and planning — although that’s part of it.
It’s taking the time to articulate what you care most about, and then organizing your day to make space for you to focus on those things. It’s integrating your family and personal life into your one big picture of how you spend your time. It’s understanding which activities will bring you closer to your dreams. And it’s letting go of everything else.
Today I talk through my approach to organizing my days (and life) this way, and invite you to join me. I’ve put together a FREE PLANNER that will guide you through this, AND I’m offering a FREE WORKSHOP so we can work through the planner together.
Download the planner here, and then join me on Friday June 2 at 11 am central for a FREE WORKSHOP to design the days of your dreams. 🧡
Oliver Burkeman: Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals
Mary Oliver: Devotions
Rebecca Pope-Ruark: Unraveling Faculty Burnout: Pathways to Reckoning & Renewal
Episode 42: Checking In With Your Goals
Episode 32: Lessons From My Year of Yes
Episode 30: The Grounded Academic Leader: Annual Plan 2023
Episode 17: A New Kind of Self-Care
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