Will time management actually save your life? Maybe not, but it’ll give you more time to actually HAVE a life!
Time management, it’s important. We live in a busy world. Take a moment and look outside, all those people that pass you in cars or walking down the street; they are on their way somewhere. Very few people that you see will be out just going for a drive or a walk. If they are driving, it’s to an appointment, or work, or school, or running errands. Basically they are fulfilling a task. Even the people that are out walking or jogging, they are most likely doing it while they have a few hour to spare and are doing it to be healthy, it’s rare that they are out just to enjoy the day. Which…is kind of sad when you think about it.
We are so busy as a culture, but what if you could use your time more wisely?
What if you could get everything done that you need to and still have time left over? Time to sit and relax with a book, sit on your back porch and watch the sunset, or go for a walk—just because you can. You have the time!
We see it a lot. People are busy all the time, spreading themselves too thin, being in a frantic state wondering how they are going to get everything done. Then you look at successful people who have a dozen projects under their arms at all times and still manage to pop up with more projects and still have time for themselves and their families. How in the world do they do that?
Well the secret to all of this is time management. There are certain things that you can do for yourself to speed up how long it takes you to accomplish each task.
Timing a task is a great way to find out how much time you are wasting. If you are writing an article, or building a website, or fixing a printer—set a timer. Don’t get distracted with multi-tasking, focus on that one task and don’t pay too much attention to the timer either. Set it and forget it! Focus on your task and when you are done you can then turn your attention to the timer.
Notice how long it took you to complete that task. Because your attention should have been 100% focused on this task as you timed it, you now have a starting point. You know this is how long this project should take, and realistically, it should take less time, because now you can start to improve on your speed and efficiency.
Since we often don’t pay attention to the clock or set small deadlines for ourselves, we end up wasting a lot of time getting tasks done. We check our phone or emails or remember that we need to buy milk at the store and start a grocery list as we work.
Multitasking, while everyone thinks they are masters of it, really does us a disservice to time management. Your full attention is not given to one project at a time, and therefore you get multiple projects that may not be your best work. Plus, the jumping back and forth and figuring out where you left off wastes time, you don’t want to do that.
Wouldn’t it be fantastic if you could get your 8 hours of work done in 5? Realistically you probably can. If you just focus on the one task at hand. Don’t get distracted.
Create a schedule for yourself. By lunch I need to have A, B, and C done. After lunch D, E, F, and G need to be completed.
Make sure that everything is in its proper place. If you have files, make sure they are in their cabinet, make sure your pens are where they are, make sure your files are easily findable on the computer-better yet, get GoServicePro and everything will be organized for you!
People assume because everything is digital nowadays you can find anything with the help of the search button, but those of us who have tried to search for a file know that this isn’t always the case. Sometimes you can’t find the file, no matter how many variations of the name you type.
Trying to track down your tools that are required to get a project done wastes so much time. Be organized, it’s much easier than you think it is.
Delegate your time. We often want to be the hero of things and want to take on everything, or would rather take on too many tasks than ask for help or seem unable to handle the load.
You most likely work in an office, which should run the same as a team. You’re all there to “win the game,” so asking for assistance isn’t unusual. Different people have different strengths, find someone that can help you and ask for assistance.
Communicate with others. Don’t use 7 words if 4 will do. Keep it simple. But that being said, don’t leave out information. If you can say something in 4 words and it contains all the information, that’s fantastic, but don’t cut your communication short because that often leads to questions and a back and forth, which wastes time and using those 7 words would have been better.
This guide works for anyone. No matter what job you are in or how many people you work with. Make sure you are organized, communicating well, focused on the ONE task at hand, and not dilly-dallying. You will see your efficiency speed up and this will leave you with more time to do the things you want to do. Take a walk, spend time with your family, or hey, take a nap!
Time management is something we should all be taking advantage of.