Time is of the Essence…It Waits for No One

In this post from author Nia Daye, you will have the opportunity to consider ways to manage your time for more peace and alignment in your life.

In our present society, people seem to always want more of something. More money, more recognition in the workplace, more social media followers, etc. But there is one thing we all wish we had more of that we can’t ever get – time. Unlike money or followers, time cannot be bought, borrowed or earned. We are all given the same amount of time each day, able to decide with who, what, where, why and how we choose to use it.

With all of the busyness of life – both personal and professional – it is easy to feel as if there is not enough time in the world to complete the many tasks ahead of you. But to maintain a sense of peace and health (physical, mental and spiritual), it is important to balance and manage your time.

Determine Your Priorities

“When everything is a priority, nothing is a priority”

Whether it is the feeling of FOMO, not wanting to disappoint someone by saying no or really leaning into “carpe diem” energy, we sometimes can create the overwhelming “short on time” feeling we get because we are not prioritizing things. There are work projects, grocery shopping, board meetings, family gatherings, grants to submit, membership deadlines, events to plan and coordinate, catch-up time with the girls, seminars to attend and bathtime. But you cannot complete those things all at once.

To prevent from feeling overloaded, there are a few questions we can ask yourselves like:

  • Is this something I must do, something I want to do/feel I should do, or can pass on right now?
  • When does this have to get done? Do I have some wiggle room or does it have to get done now?
  • Does this conflict with something else? Is my schedule already booked/overlapping with this task?
  • How important is this to me?

Some things are an automatic “must do” of course (looking at you, groceries and bathtime). But when thinking of those work obligations, volunteer projects and personal events, the answers given from the above questions will help us organize and prioritize them in an effective and efficient way. 

Set It So You Don’t Forget It

Here are a few tools and tips to help manage time wisely:

  • Use a written planner or electronic calendar: It can be easy to forget things, even when it is important. So using a planner or calendar is a easy, easily accessible tool to remember all of life’s happenings
  • Review calendar/planner at the beginning of each week: This can place you in a better headspace to tackle and prepare for the week – especially if it is a busy one
  • Set reminders and sub-tasks: For the things with far-out deadlines, setting follow-up reminders and tasks over time makes the task feel more achievable. A task manager within a planner/calendar or project management/workflow tools like Airtable can be useful
  • Daily To-Do List: It’s all in the details and a daily to-do list can help keep that in perspective. And that “I feel accomplished” feeling that comes along when crossing items of your list can sometimes motivate you to do more


We can get into a groove after setting our priorities and taking action on them. But a shift in life may cause you to go back and rethink what and who you are prioritizing. 

Though my love for people – especially family and friends – is an underlying constant in my life, my focus and time was primarily dedicated to professional goals and determining my career since graduating college in 2013. Working full-time in various industries, serving on nonprofit boards, attending a few networking events each week with a couple of out-of-town family gatherings and friend outings sprinkled in each month was my life. But over the last few years, how I want to spend my time has shifted

The pandemic felt like the first opportunity in a while that I was able to be still and reevaluate how I was spending, dedicating and managing my time. The saying “life is too short” took on a different meaning, showing how precious life and time is, especially with the ones we love. Exiting out of Covid as we were emerging back into a new normalcy, I was determined not to manage my time the same way I did in 2019. I couldn’t. My priorities and focus were not the same.

Though I still am a very driven, accomplished individual in the professional space, I am no longer letting my personal life take a back seat. We cannot get more time with the ones we love, so being fully present for “baecations,” family parties, brunch with friends, working out, baths before bedtime and me-time are my top priorities. The questions, tools and tips are still at work, but my calendar, daily to-do list and tasks look a bit different nowadays.


Whatever season or chapter of life you find yourself in, managing and spending your time wisely will help you accomplish your goals. Prioritize your time and energy on what is most important and your time will never feel wasted.

Nia Daye is the Associate Director of Advancement at Mercy Neighborhood Ministries, a human services nonprofit in North Philadelphia serving individuals 2-102 years old through educational, healthcare and other support services. She also sits on the board of Impact100 Philadelphia, a women’s collective giving circle providing $100,000 grants to nonprofits in Philadelphia and surrounding PA counties. Outside of her professional life, her greatest joy is found in spending time with family and friends, traveling, working out/dancing, and anything food-related as she has grown to be a bit of a foodie.

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Hi, I’m Jessi

I created Habituelle Life and Leadership Coaching so that ambitious women can see that finding fulfillment in their personal and professional lives is possible. Redefining success in my own life has allowed me to help others do the same.

I’m here to support you in this journey of evolving identities, inner criticisms, and competing societal messages. We aren’t meant to do this life alone.