Why You May Have More Free Time Than You Think

It's easy to convince ourselves that there's no free time in our schedules for an extra cross-training session or catch-up dinner with an old friend, especially as spring performances and school deadlines approach. And sometimes that's true—but recent studies published in the Journal of Consumer Research found that we often have more time than we think.

Over three studies, the researchers found that people tend to feel busier the closer they come to reaching a goal or completing a task, even when they don't actually have any less time than usual. This means they became more likely to delay or turn down other activities, even ones that benefit their health and well-being. In one of the studies, people in an airport were asked to take a short survey on their way to boarding a plane. Those who had already arrived at the gate were more likely to take the extra time than those who were waiting for the train that would take them to the terminal. Even though the people at the gate actually had less time until departure, the others were closer to their immediate goal of boarding the train, which made them more impatient.  


Overbooking yourself is still not a good idea, but neither is neglecting your health because you don't think you have enough time. So maybe you don't have to sacrifice that rejuvenating yoga session just because your spring showcase is coming up. In fact, keeping it on your schedule might help you handle the stress that comes with feeling extra-busy.

Latest Posts


Margo Moritz, Courtesy Alonzo King LINES Ballet

How Adult Students Can Prep for a Safe Return to the Studio

After a year (or more) of virtual classes, it's finally time to unplug and head back to the studio.

Exciting? Absolutely. A little scary? Definitely.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Getty Images

Feeling Unchallenged? Here’s How to Advocate for Advancement in Your Company

You're performing well year after year, but you're still not being cast in larger roles. Your work ethic and technique are strong, but, for some reason, your director hasn't approached you about advancing in the company. Many dancers face this very dilemma—they're ready for a new challenge, but featured roles or a promotion don't seem to be on the horizon.

When opportunity doesn't knock first, it may be time to approach the door and do some knocking of your own. "I've been having those conversations with my director since I joined, which is rare," says Amanda Morgan, a fifth-year corps de ballet dancer at Pacific Northwest Ballet. She believes directors are waiting for dancers to advocate for themselves. If you're wondering how you can be more proactive, here are a few questions to help prompt your preparation.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Katie Ging Photography, Courtesy Ballet Academy of Pittsburgh

Why This School Decided to Hold Its "Nutcracker" in June

A growing Christmas tree. Angels and mice. Flowers and a sugarplum. Snow. Last week, the curtain rose on a festive performance of The Nutcracker…in June?

The pandemic has brought all sorts of odd workarounds for dance studios, from virtual classes to outdoor performances. But when COVID-19 threatened Ballet Academy of Pittsburgh's annual Nutcracker, the school decided to make an especially bold pivot: to hold it in early June, when most schools are doing their end-of-year summer recitals.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks