This Is the True Secret of Time Management

Maybe it's an adulthood thing, or maybe it's a contemporary thing, but almost nobody has enough time. You probably have a long commute, a slew of personal obligations, a busy work schedule, and maybe even hobbies or dating or volunteering. That's to say nothing of just being tired and needing a chance to rest.

Even if we want it all, most of us recognize we have limits. That's what drives us to prioritize and help structure our lives. If you still have trouble fitting it all in, however, you're far from alone. Kira Newman, managing editor for the University of California, Berkeley's Greater Good Magazine, pulls together a collection of studies into time management and how it breaks down along different demographic lines. For instance, women who are married to men express more exhaustion, stress, and depression about housework than men. The reason? The housework and volunteering men do (mowing the lawn, coaching) is more fun, more motivating, and more likely to produce a sense of accomplishment.

This does suggest that everyone can help themselves by finding some fun or some meaning in even the dullest of chores, but that doesn't mean you need to enjoy dusting or doing the dishes. The Unf*ck Your Habitat movement is all about breaking down duties into easily attainable tasks, such as by setting a timer and creating boundaries. Of course, your problem may be procrastination, which research suggests is an emotional conflict rather than a character flaw. It's worth taking a hard look at how and why you can't seem to keep up with your own life. Whatever you find, there are plenty of people who can help you find that middle ground.