I recently sat down to create a new financial budget. As many of you budgeters already know, budgeting when and how you spend you money is a great way to keep yourself financially in tip top shape. But sometimes, a budget get stale or loses it’s meaning because, over time, goals have been accomplished but new goals haven’t replaced them. So then, the budget becomes more about an autopilot function, which often, does not serve our best financial interests.
In an effort to be a rockstar home financier, I took some time to research household budgets to see if there were some skills and techniques that could offer better results than the ones I was currently using. One of the most impactful things I found was one expert’s point that budgets are continually in flux. Car repairs or other expenses pop up unexpectedly and you have to deal with them somehow. Hopefully, when that happens, you’ve got enough money in savings to cover those costs and reduce the stress that goes along with unexpected expenses. Some expenses, however, are not unexpected, like the fact that my heating bill will be increasing as it gets colder. How much it increases is a little bit of a mystery right now depending on the weather but I can say with certainty, it will increase every month from now until March. This means, once I get my budget set, I will need to make adjustments to it for the foreseeable changes coming my way AND still keep putting some money away for unexpected expenses.
As I was working all of this out, it occurred to me how similar my time budgeting is to my financial budgeting. Obviously, like money, we all have a limited amount of time. We can use that time however we want but if we’re not careful, we could burn through our allotment and not accomplish the things that are really important to us.
As with money, there are always foreseeable time “expenses”, things like work, family dinners, and cutting the grass. There are also unexpected “expenses” like a friend coming into town which means whatever you had planned is likely to get tabled when you make the time visit with them.
Attaining performance goals is just like being successful at attaining financial goals. It takes time, intention, planning, and the willingness to sacrifice immediate gratification for success that, at times, may be far off in the future.
Also, much like financial budgeting, performance budgeting needs constant evaluation to make sure the process we are using to improve our performance meshes well with the other “expenses” in our lives. For most of us, performance can be our top priority at some times, but not all the time. How we budget our time during those periods with unexpected “time expenses” unrelated to performance will mean the ultimate success or failure of our athletic performance over the long haul.
So what do you think? Is it time to get out the pen and paper and redesign your time budget? Are you using your training time optimally to ensure you get the greatest return on your investment? Don’t guess — be sure. Your ultimate success is riding on your answer.