So you decided to try it…
So the boredom got to you and you have taken the plunge (no you won’t drown) toward a more vibrant and satisfying life. You decided that a life audit is needed. Where do you start? After all, if it was easy, we would have all done it years ago. The first step is…
Stage 1 – Stocktaking
Your life audit begins with writing a wish or want list of all the things you’d do if you had more time. Think about what you’d do. Write it down so that it is clear in mind. Would you go for an early morning walk before breakfast, learn to play the guitar, travelling somewhere in a campervan, or have a weekly date night with your partner?
“Then look at how you use your time each day. Stand outside yourself and watch yourself go through each day for a week,” says Caroline Righton, author of The Life Audit.
“When you go to bed, spend 10 minutes writing down everything you did and how long you spent doing it. Or you can write your list on the bus or train on the way home from work. During your stocktaking week you’ll start to see when you’re wasting time you could use to do something for yourself.”
Potential Growth Zones
Use the time during your stocktaking week to note the parts of life you’re not happy with – your health, weight, relationships, your career path, a lack of “me” time, or the state of your home or money. Here are some questions to consider…
- Have you got any nagging aches or pains you keep ignoring? When was the last doctor’s checkup?
- How physically active are you? When was the last time you went for a walk?
- How is your weight? Could you lose a few kilos? Are you proud of your eating habits?
- Does leaving for work make you anxious?
- Are you and your partner so busy you can’t remember the last time you went on a date together?
And we haven’t touched on the credit card bill!
“Interrogate yourself about any areas of life that make you feel uncomfortable or unhappy,” says Righton, “ because then you’ll be in a position to start making decisions about what to change, if that’s what you want. You should also be starting to notice how you use time and how you could fill your spare minutes with activities related to the dreams on your wish list.”
Stage 2 – Breaking Even.
This stage of your life audit is about doing the things you have to do as efficiently as possible to maximise your free time. It’s time to recognize what your life is like right now – 2015 – and doing something now. The stocktake has highlighted what areas of life need adjustment and now you have to develop an action plan to achieve change.
“We all have non-negotiable relationships and outfits we adore that we can’t possibly throw away. But we also all have things in our life we want to eliminate and audit out,” says Caroline Righton.
Stage 3 – The Make or Break stage
“At this stage you should see the bottom line and decide what you’re going to do with that. You can see things as they are and stick with them for a while, or change.”
The winds of change are blowing. Which direction will they take you?