What’s in your diary for this week? Back to Back meetings? No gaps across your week? Catching up with work in the evenings due to too many meetings? Do you always answer “busy” when someone asks how you are?
Sounds all too familiar? Now that we are so much more pressed for time, we need to even schedule “fun” activities with friends weeks, or even months, in advance. New research, however, suggests we need to create a bit more flexibility into our calendars and be a little more spontaneous. If we always make rigid plans, like needing to be somewhere at a specific time, it can add extra stress to already stressful days, so instead make looser arrangements that are more open-ended and have wider possibilities with less pressure to “fit it in” to our already packed days.
In fact, one of the rising sources of stress these days is indeed our holidays. The stress of choosing a destination, having the perfect getaway, the stress of must enjoy it, FOMO on things while you’re there and of course what you’re missing at work/home. Holidays (and weekends) should be an opportunity to empty the diary, embrace the freedom, enjoy the choice and just go with the flow.
Our advice is to avoid overscheduling, especially when you don’t need to and aim to be more present and enjoy the here and now.
Source: Activity versus outcome maximization in time management.