There are a lot of stressors in life that are out of our control, but being late doesn’t have to be one of them. If you’re constantly finding yourself rushed, stressed, or even worse, getting in trouble at work – then it’s time to take back control of your time and timing. This bad habit can be stopped and so can your high stress levels.
Are you leaving yourself enough time? If you find yourself always being 5 minutes late or 20 minutes late – then probably not. This one is simple, you just need to leave earlier. If you normally leave the house at 7:30 am, you now need to leave the house at 7:15 am, or maybe even 7 am. Remember though, that this shift begins in your mind. Start actively telling yourself that you need to leave at 7:15 am.
Your brain will need a bit of reminding at first until it adjusts to your new leave time. And even if you don’t make it out of the house right at 7:15 am the first few days, you’ll still be leaving earlier than you used to. You’ll certainly start arriving earlier, if not on time altogether.
Take a look at your morning routine. Our routines become so automatic that we don’t notice when some of them are harmful by causing us to be late. Put first things first and make sure you’re ready early. You know what this means. Get yourself ready first. Shower, get dressed, have coffee, make breakfast, and whatever other have-to’s before you do anything else. If you’re putting these last, this may be why you’re late.
It’s also important to pay attention to and write down time-wasting activities you find yourself doing. Making a mindful effort to avoid these time sucks will magically put minutes back into your morning.
Don’t be too hard on yourself either, good habits take time to build. Keep your words and thoughts positive. Start saying, “I’m going to be on time” instead of, “I’m not going to be late”. Our brains tend to hear the subject ‘on time’ or ‘be late’, so make sure you’re keeping your thoughts and talk in the affirmative. It may seem silly, but you’ll be surprised how effective this one is.
Being on time is a gift you give yourself and others. You deserve to feel the relief and freedom that comes with it.