Squeezed for Time

“I am definitely going to take a course on time management. . . just as soon as I can work it into my schedule.”       Louis E. Boone

How do you manage your time? Do you have a strategy? Maybe a tactic or two? I would love to hear your ideas on this subject.

Here are some ‘best practices’ that have helped me over the years.  I continue to employ each of these tactics.

Plan tomorrow today

Before you go to sleep, pinpoint the three most important tasks or activities you need to accomplish tomorrow. In the morning, start on the first priority.   If you encounter distractions or detours during the day, as soon as possible, complete number one before proceeding to the second most important activity.

Do what is important

Objectives not accomplished today may not be the most significant tomorrow. Always select the most important tasks you need to complete. Sometimes, old items on your long-term to-do list may not be what is important to accomplish today. Prioritize daily. Avoid a strategy that focuses on quantity of tasks completed. Always do what is important.

Work in blocks of time

Look at your schedule for a whole week. Plan a specific time for yourself in the same manner as you would schedule a medical or business appointment. Reserve 90 minutes of uninterrupted time, because you can accomplish more in 90 minutes than in three 30-minute segments.

Declutter

Identify anything insignificant that will not matter if never accomplished. Create a list of tasks you can delegate to another person, thereby eliminating from your personal to-do list.

Think long-term

What would you most like to accomplish in the next three years? Determine to portion out a segment of time each day that is related to the long-term.  Think BIG. If you accomplish one substantial goal every single year, your personal status will be much different five years from now. A colossal goal is always accomplished in many small segments over a period of time – a daily effort is needed.

Eliminate interruptions

Be aware that interruptions can destroy major goals. Fight against interruptions. Resist the temptation for constant electronic monitoring. Not every text message or email requires a response. Turn off your computer or Smartphone for a period of time every single day. Close the door to your office, or find a quiet space at home where you can think, void of distractions.

No one gets extra time. We all receive the same amount. Therefore, time management is not about creating more time. Rather, the focus should be only in finding a way to spend time allotments on what is most important. At the end of the day, all minutes will be consumed, never again available.

In reviewing time consumption, keep in mind two worthy goals:

  1. Decrease the amount of time spent on what is unimportant
  2. Increase the amount of time spent on what is important

Do you need to update your time management strategy?

Perhaps, one new practice is what is required.

Are you in need of a complete overhaul?

What would be the result if you improved your time management even in just a small amount?

When will you?