Time Management Tips You Were Never Taught
workable tips to help you make the most of your time
Chances are good that, at some time in your life, you've taken a time management class, read about it in books, and tried to use an electronic or paper-based day planner to organize, prioritize and schedule your day. "Why, with this knowledge and these gadgets," you may ask, "do I still feel like I can't get everything done I need to?"
The answer is simple. Everything you ever learned about managing time is a complete waste of time because it doesn't work. Try these time management tips you were never taught;
Learn to Observe Yourself and Others
The first step to becoming a good time manager is to observe the ways you currently spend your time. Note your observation down. Closely monitor what activity takes the most of your time, how you spend it, where and when you spend it. Once you have a clear understanding of how you spend your time, it becomes much easier to make other choices as regards how you spend your time.
Now that you have decided to closely monitor how you spend your time. You can clearly understand what activities waste your time and decide to change it. The second step to becoming a good time manager is to change the activities you spend your time that is less or unproductive
Learn to Say No
People would always ask you for favours, it could be big or small. No matter how trivial the favour they are requesting of you or how huge it is. Please don't put your life on hold and waste precious moment fulfilling other people's wishes. Saying no for some people is a very hard thing to do, but it has tremendous rewards. Ask yourself, "Is this the wisest and best use of my time right now?" If you cannot respond positively to that question, say no to the opportunity. It’s not all the time you say yes to every request people ask of you.
Under-commit and Over-deliver
This is one of the greatest productivity secrets of all time, and so often we tend to do the opposite. People tend to over-commit and under-deliver that is quite wrong of them. This one skill of under committing and over-delivering can reduce tremendous amounts of stress in your life and significantly strengthen your relationships.
Use One Time-Management System
There is no greater cause of stress than not delivering on a commitment. Whether its your mortgage or rent or a commitment you make to a customer or a fellow employee, not following through or under-delivering causes a great deal of stress. Have a system that schedules your commitments without all the worry. Floating pieces of paper represent commitments. Get them all in one system.
Documentation is one thing. Documentation retrieval is another. Establish a place for everything, and then put everything in its place. You lose, on average, an hour a day looking for things. If you want more time, spend less of it looking for what you need. (Start by buying a label maker, file cabinet and computer. Create a retrieval system using these tools, and you will never regret the time and money you invest.)
Everyone is motivated differently. Find what motivates you and use it. When you’re in a positive mood you can get more done, so use positive material to help you get there. They say that more than 85% of what you hear each day is negative. If this is true, you had better have a way of reducing its effect. Make sure you are getting what you need to stay positive and motivated. I highly recommend purchasing positive tapes and CDs to listen to in the car.
Turn To Do’s into Appointments
What is higher in priority than a task prioritized as an “A” on a To Do list? The answer is an appointment on your calendar. To Do’s are discretionary tasks that are time flexible. Appointments are time specific. We defend appointments, but we tend to forget about tasks. To take your time-management skills to the next level, take your A’s off your To Do list and put them on your appointment schedule.
Plan 15 Minutes Every Day
The best way to leverage time is to plan and prioritize. When we plan and prioritize, we control events instead of falling prey to events that control us. When we get to events before they get to us, we reduce the amount of time they take, improve the quality of the results they produce and reduce the stress in our lives.
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