168 hours to build the life of your dreams


Before we can talk about time management, we need to talk about spending time.


A person who lives to the age of 79 can use an average of 28,835 days and 692,040 hours during his lifetime. Seems like a lot? Let’s take a closer look. On average, 26 years of that time is spent sleeping. This means that we spend 1/3 of our entire life in bed. You will certainly be tempted to reduce the amount of sleep you get, but there is a catch. Insufficient sleep is associated with various health risks and even early mortality, so it is not worth getting less sleep! The optimal sleep time should be at least 8 hours a day.


When we are not sleeping, we are most likely at work, because we spend 13 years of our lives working.


We also spend a considerable amount of our lives on screens: 8 and a half years watching TV and 3 years scrolling through social media.


We spend an entire 4 and a half years eating, and research shows that, unfortunately, not eating food we love. It’s time to change that!


So how much time is left for fun? Correct answer – not enough!


The average person spends only 1.3 years of his life playing sports and 3 years on vacation. Is that little or what?


We cannot borrow more time, but we can learn to use it better.


7(days) X 24 (hours) = 168 tundi, to build the life of your dreams


Expert in time managementLaura Vanderkamexamines how busy people spend their lives and discovered that many of us drastically overestimate our responsibilities each week, while underestimating the time we have for ourselves.


We have 168 hours available each week. We can’t create more time, but we can stretch it. In other words, time is elastic. Where we direct it depends on how much and what we get done at the moment.


Time management is not the management of time but the management of yourself and your priorities.


I don’t have time = it’s not my priority


Laura Vanderkam in her TED talk gives a good example. As part of his research, he has looked at the schedules of thousands of very busy people, but one example stood out in particular.


A woman who divided her life between family, work and hobbies faced a broken boiler one week that ruined her whole life and turned her entire weekly schedule upside down. During the time logging, it was revealed that he spent a total of 7 hours a week on boiler-related work. However, she did not miss anything important. However, if she had been asked at the beginning of the week if she had 7 hours of free time to train for a marathon, for example, she would have answered “no”.


This situation is a very good description of setting priorities.


We cannot create more time, but we can prioritize important activities by bringing them to the top of the weekly or daily schedule. These are activities in which we do not compromise, but treat them with the same dedication as the woman in the previous example treated her broken water boiler.


An important key in setting priorities is to aim your activities forward and not backward. This means that we do not evaluate our actions in retrospect, but plan them in advance. This gives us a better view of what lies ahead and allows us to put our TOP1 priorities on the calendar before it is filled with other obligations.


Laura Vanderkam recommends leaving the planning for Friday afternoon instead of the usual Monday, because Friday afternoons are usually quiet.


She recommends dividing your list of priorities into three categories: career, relationships, and yourself. This ensures that we think about our priorities in each category, because most of the time only the first one – career – gets attention, and the other two remain without attention.


72 hours a week to yourself


If we have 168 hours in a week, we spend 40 hours working full-time. Sleeping 8 hours every night, we spend 56 hours sleeping. That leaves us with 72 hours to do other things.


72 hours is a long time. At least long enough to spend a few hours every day doing things that bring you joy. For exercising, spending time with family, pursuing your hobbies, visiting your parents, or anything else.


Tips for better use of time


We all have the same number of hours in a day, the bad news is that there are no more extra hours. The good news is that we can learn to use them better.


The biggest trap we tend to fall into in our free time is thinking that sitting in front of the TV or scrolling around on the phone is a vacation or a reward. It isn’t. It is necessary from time to time, and there must be time for lounging, but this lounging is often followed by a greater sense of guilt for ineffectively spent time, rather than a sense of well-being.


Here are some tips on how to plan your time better:


    1. Every Friday afternoon, make a priority list for the next week, where you plan your priorities in three categories: career, relationships and yourself. These are your non-negotiable priorities. This means that they must not be replaced by other activities, moved around between days, or even worse, deleted. Treat these priorities like a leaking boiler that you wouldn’t ignore.
    2. Use the weekly planner. Use a weekly planner instead of a regular daily planner. This will give you a better overview of the time you are using.
    3. Make every moment count. 72 hours of “free time” is a long time, but trust me, it goes by quickly. Be efficient. If your journey to work is by bus, grab a book with you. During your lunch breaks, listen to podcasts or meditate. Walk more or ride a bike to get your exercise needs met. Simple steps lead to big results!
    4. Be creative! If it is important for you to spend time with your family, but you don’t have time for it in the evenings, then eat breakfast together.
    5. Focus on what is important to you! Prioritize yourself and activities that bring you joy, because it gives you energy to do things that don’t bring you so much pleasure.


If you need help with time planning, we are here for you. Firmafitness offers various mental health trainings, in which we teach you to plan your time better so that you have more time for your health and interests. Contact us info@firmafitness.eeor www.firmafitness.ee