Are you suffering from time famine?

Photo Credit: amsfrank

Photo Credit: amsfrank

Have you ever felt consumed by your to-do list? Then you are not alone. I see it in my friends, my clients, my co-workers and not in the last place in myself.

While people actually value ‘having enough time’ more than anything. Having enough time or not makes a huge difference to our sense of well-being. Yet many of us often experience a chronic lack of it.

What does this have to do with an expat life? An international move is known to be one of the most stressful and time consuming activities. And if that is not enough, after the move you need time to get settled in your new country. All trivial undertakings can seem challenging all of a sudden, like going to the supermarket.

The overwhelming amount of new information to process and the continuous time squeeze can keep you from living the full life you desire.┬áInstead of giving even more ‘time saving’ tips and tricks, this article is challenging you to look at time from a different perspective.

I have known this to be true for years. I write about it now after being inspired by the interview from Marie Forleo with her guest Arianna Huffington (yes, from the Huffington Post) last week. In case you want to see the whole interview, you will find the link below this article.

Arianna mentioned the term ‘time famine’ which I think describes too well what many of us are suffering from these days. She defines it: the feeling that we are breathlessly running out of time or don’t have enough time. And I am no stranger to this apparition myself.

Luckily I have not woken up in a pool of my own blood, like Arianna, but I have had a burn-out about 10 years ago. Simply exhausted from the never ending to-do list without balancing it out with recharging breaks.

Did I not know at that time that I had to use my time well? Sure I did. Only I didn’t know how to do that. My upbringing had a trap that ‘using your time well’ meant being highly effective. And so I trained myself to do the largest amount of things in as little time as possible.┬áI didn’t know the one most important ingredient to be able to enjoy the time on my hands: Downtime.

In our down time we are not focussed on an outcome or a result. We are not trying to be effective or efficient.

So how do we incorporate that in our lives? The following will be a mix of quotes and free translation of what Arianna mentions in the interview.

“The key is to prioritize what really matters. We have enough time for all the really important things in our life.”

Photo Credit: Hey Paul Studios via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: Hey Paul Studios

Trust that things that don’t get done do not really need to be attended. Letting them go is a good thing.

Will this change the amount of stuff that needs taking care of during your international move? No. But you will start out with a lot more space inside, a more peaceful attitude. You will have overview much faster. You will know who to turn to for help and not feel so overwhelmed.

You will be able to have enough down time.

Do you want to know more on this subject? Arianna’s new book ‘Thrive’ is about people wanting to redefine a successful life on their own terms. An opportunity that especially international residents can take because they are reshaping their life anyway!

Here you can view the full interview and the book can now be ordered, also via the link below the interview.





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