3 steps to re-writing the “I don’t have time” story

“I’m overwhelmed.”

“I would, but I don’t have time.”

“I don’t have time to (or time for) ______________. ”

Go ahead and fill in the blank with all the things you SAY you want.

Fill the blank with all the things that you’re constantly THINKING about, all the things you JUDGE other people for doing and finding time for, all the things that you are intellectually committed to, but yet, you’re doing nothing about.

Let me give you some examples.

The blank could be filled with things like:  Eat healthy, workout, personal development, reading, writing, journaling, a mediation practice, a yoga practice, sleep, romance, sex, build my business, search for a new job, make the follow up calls, send the emails, make more money, market my business, take the class, do the research, learn the skill, and on and on and on….

Look, I get it.

Literally, earlier today I had a moment on a mastermind call where I heard myself expressing how I ONLY have 2 days to work on my business and how I CAN’T do anything Friday-Sunday when I’m at the restaurant where I work part-time and then I also NEED Monday for self care and Tuesday is my day off with my honey…

How on earth can I possibly keep all this momentum going and still get everything done AND OMG NOW I’M FREAKING OUT AND I HAVE NO TIME FOR ANYTHINGGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!

{cue self-induced overwhelm and dramatic meltdown}

You want to know what’s most insane about all of that?

I know that none of what I verbalized is ACTUALLY true.

In fact, it is complete bullshit.

I was pretending that in order to continue taking action on my dreams and goals I needed to have a totally clear schedule, this massive open space in my planner, this space in my life where all of the proverbial lights are green, and some big booming voice will declare, “ALL CLEAR!!!!” 

And, unless that happens, I obviously can’t do anything.  {massive eye roll}

Sounds ridiculous, right?!  That’s because it is!

In fact, that time will probably NEVER happen.  Not for me.  Not for you.

And, by me pretending that it’s a required element for me to achieve success,  I get to stay stuck in my “I can’t ever win and no matter what I do it’s never enough and I can’t get ahead.” BULLSHIT story.

You have one too.  The details may be different, but you have a story.

Thanks Michelle.  You’ve clearly identified the problem.  WHAT DO I DO ABOUT IT???

#1 – Identify

Become aware of the story you’re telling.


Fill in the blank from earlier.  Really fill it out.  Get out a pen and piece of paper and write the following…

I don’t have time to/time for ____________. 

If multiple things would go in the blank, write the sentence multiple times.  Complete it for each and every thing that resonates with you.

If you want to experience a shift, it is imperative that you are HONEST with yourself.

What is true for you?

What do you believe you don’t have time for?

If you get stuck, simply spend a few days in observation.

Listen to yourself.

What are you languaging?  Your language is a CLEAR indicator of what you believe to be true.

Notice without judgment.

You don’t suck.

You’re not worthless or stupid or incapable or a loser or anything else.

You’re human.

Awareness is the first step on the path to freedom.

#2 – Call bullshit on your stories

Recognize that what you’ve written are stories.  They may be stories you’ve repeated for a loooonnnnngg time, they may be stories that you think are true, they may be stories other people have told you are true, but they are stories.

Made up stories.

If you really desire the things you say you want, if you really want to live and experience a life of freedom, you are going to want to read these stories out loud and call bullshit on each one.

You’ve got to accept that if what you’ve written and what you’re languaging isn’t UNIVERSALLY TRUE, then your story probably, just maybe, is a little teeny tiny bit BS.

You have to be willing to look at what’s real and call yourself on your stories.

I’ll admit, it’s not easy to do on your own.

I recommend you get support.

I have accountability partners, mastermind groups, and coaches.

Today my coach boldly called me on my shit.

And when he pointed out what I was doing, I said something to the effect of, You’re right.  That’s bullshit.  I’m lying.  I’m pretending like I need a large chunk of time to build my business, I’m pretending that small progress isn’t progress, I’m lying when I say that I’m incapable of doing things on the days I work, and I’m creating my own overwhelm by speaking this way….

Listen, here’s the real deal…

If your kids or your spouse or yourself were in danger… If their lives or your life were on the line and the ONLY way to save them from death was to do the thing you swear you don’t have time to do, you would do the thing.

If that’s true, then the issue is probably one of the following…

  1. Either the stakes aren’t high enough to push you into action
  2. You’re behaving like something is more important to you than it really is
  3. You’re pretending that the “thing” takes much longer and requires more energy than it ACTUALLY takes

#3 – Take SMALL action steps daily

The truth is, I don’t have all day everyday to devote to my business, but I do have a few minutes every day.

There are always minutes.

Can I spend an hour journaling daily?  Nope.

But I can spend 3-5 minutes.

Can I write workshop proposals and follow up with speaking opportunities every day?

No.  But I can spend a few minutes researching who I want to follow up with and adding to my list of prospects.

Can I spend a WHOLE DAY every week in self care?

Probably not gonna happen at the moment.

But, I can find moments every day to read or listen to healing music, or move my body, or play with my dogs, or be in nature.

I meditated for 4 minutes today because that’s what my schedule allowed for.

Some days I workout for 45-60 minutes.  Other days it’s for 15 minutes.  And other days I do squats and leg lifts while I brush my teeth.

We spend so much of our time talking about and thinking about how we don’t have time to do the things we want to do.

I propose if we simply used that SAME TIME to take ACTION, we’d see and experience the progress we’re telling ourselves we don’t have time for.

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