How to become expert in time management part 1. One of the top reasons why people struggle so much with stress is having too many things to do and too little time. We have already discussed the problem of overworked adults in America, in a previous article.
How to Become Expert In Time Management Part 1
The bottom line is being overworked is caused by poor time management. If you are not keeping track of the time it takes you to do everyday tasks, it is way too easy for things to get out of control.
This article series will talk about the best methods for effective time management. Once you start implementing these tips, you’ll begin to maximize the hours in your day and you’ll start to see a real positive shift in your productivity.
Exploring the most effective ways to manage time
Discover Where Your Time Goes – In order to know how to proceed with adopting an effective time management strategy, you first need to know where and how you spend your time right now.
One of the ways you can do this is to begin writing down your daily activities from the time you wake up until the time you go to bed. Keep track of these activities for roughly two weeks so you can get a good picture of where your time is spent and how it trends.
It’s common while tracking time and activities for people to practice more efficiently. Try not to be too concerned just yet about how efficient you appear to be. You want to get an honest and realistic account of how you are spending your time during the course of a normal day.
While you are tracking your time and activities, begin to rate each activity. Your rate range will be from one to four with one indicating a “waste of time” and four indicating an “excellent use of time.” Anything rated two will indicate “a little time consuming” and three will indicate “good use of time.”
As you go along, a detailed picture will emerge showing where you are truly spending your time. You can use the information gleaned in this analysis to contribute to other time management efforts that you take on.
Start Transforming Your Activities – Sometimes lack of good time management is directly correlated to the number of time-wasting activities throughout the day. One such activity is watching TV. In and of itself, watching TV is not a bad thing. But when it interferes with more important work, it causes you to miss deadlines, or you keep feeling that there are not enough hours in the day to accomplish everything, then it may have become a problem. Learn to control how much time you set aside for watching TV and other similar activities. You don’t have to give them up completely, but recognize there are a time and a place for them.
When you get to a place where you know you need to transform some of your daily activities, it’s important that you proceed with a game plan. First of all, write down everything that you feel you need additional time for. Be honest with this list and write everything down that comes to mind.
For example, your list might include the following:
– Learn a new language
– Learn how to play chess
– Spend more time with my spouse
– Spend more time in meditation
– Play more video games
– Spend more time playing with the kids
Your list will look different from anybody else’s list because your list contains things that are important to you. Again, don’t censor yourself when making the list because you think someone else might frown on things you consider important. This list is for you. It will help you get a handle on the activities that are taking up too much time in your day.
As you move forward in your efforts and learn to steward your time well, you will likely find that you not only have time for the important things but the fun things on your list as well – plus more!
Set out to be very mindful of your daily activities and how much time you’re spending on them. Frequently check-in with yourself to see if you really need to be spending so much time on any particular activity or if it’s something you can eliminate from your repertoire altogether.
When you’re more mindful of your daily activities, you will find that distractions you struggled with in the past are no longer a factor.
Just because you are spending eight hours at the office doesn’t mean you’re being as productive as you can be. If you’re barely touching your workload, reexamine things to determine whether or not you’re making wise use of your time.
Change How You Do Things – Okay so you’ve made your lists, you know where your time is going and to what activities, but you’re still having trouble keeping up – or worse, you’re falling behind. At this point, it’s time to analyze how you are doing things.
Explore new approaches and new methods of accomplishing everyday responsibilities and tasks. When you find a more efficient way of doing things, you will reduce the amount of time required to complete the tasks facing you. As a result, you will have more time for additional activities or leisure activities.
Think about this: How many times do you check your email on a daily basis? Once every hour? A few times a day? A few times an hour? Every 15 minutes?
Let’s say you check your email every hour and let’s assume that it takes you 10 minutes to access your inbox and scroll through your messages. After your sixth check of the inbox, you have already used up an hour of your time.
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Limit the number of times you check your email to once or twice a day. Any urgent emails can be addressed immediately but getting a handle on how much time you spend in your inbox could potentially give you a lot of time back.