Time management is highly recommended for busy people to help them to get more done, achieve their goals and relieve their stress. It often involves putting standardised systems in place for regular tasks and creating to-do lists.
There never seems to be enough time for women at midlife. You may be juggling your career with dealing with family, and supporting older parents who need support. And all the time you are experiencing the rollercoaster of fluctuating hormones and perimenopause symptoms. It can feel exhausting. Surely some time management would be essential.
But what if time-management is not enough? What if you have a well-planned day/ week/month but you have no energy or motivation to put it into action? This was the subject of my discussion with Coco Groothuis on Hot Women Rock Radio.
Coco, from The Netherlands, was a dedicated student. When she left school she went to University and gained degrees in Cultural Sciences and Cultural Heritage. She was striving hard to set up her career. She organised a very successful festival.
“I was told that if I would manage my time properly and use perseverance, I would naturally experience balance and tranquillity. I did manage to work hard, achieve success and keep focussed. Only: the balance and tranquillity seemed like an eternal dot on the horizon. I just never had spare time, my pleasure for life disappeared and I just couldn’t manage to work in a more relaxed way. Instead, the mountain just got bigger. I was nearing burn-out.”
Coco decided to take a different approach. Convinced that there must be a better way she started researching and experimenting with alternatives.
“I found out that I could work much easier if I followed my own cycle and own pace. Which meant that I took my rest during the period when my body was tired and went into gear when I felt the inspiration bubbling up. Regardless of the schedule that I had in my agenda at that time. This made me feel that working could be done differently. That life is meant to be different. And that there is a natural flow of energy beneath everything, which we just have to follow instead of controlling it.”
Time management is about planning for the day according to the clock or your calendar but energy management is when you become conscious of the qualities of seasons and plan your work-life around your menstrual cycle or moon cycle to be more in tune with your energy.
Now, Coco coaches women to move from time-management to energy management. She combines her own experience with different tools and theories from working with the seasons, the Bullet Journal Method and the rhythm of the moon.
Tips for Energy Management
To start your movement from time management to energy management:
1 Track your menstrual cycle and plan on being more active at the times when you are more energised.
2 Track the natural rhythm of the seasons and moon, and use those qualities in the planning of your work.
3 Pick your top three work priorities and focus your time and energy on them
4 If you don’t menstruate anymore, use nature’s rhythm and plan your work around them, so you experience more flow and a better outcome without forcing yourself to work hard when you have limited energy.
5 Celebrate and use whatever stage of life you have arrived at. If you are at menopause prepare to harvest the results of all the work you have done in the earlier stages of your life.
Register for Coco’s free webinar on 7 September ‘Work Effortlessly Aligned with Your Own Natural Rhythm’
If you need more support for your menopause or to support your colleagues contact me for details.