Time management is a big challenge for most of us. With all the demands of our fast-paced world, life becomes a list of tasks we need to accomplish every day, but it seems 24/7 is not enough. So how can we better manage our time? Let me share with you some tips.
- Start your day early.
“The early bird gets the worm” saying may sound like a cliche, but it is true. Many studies have shown the benefits of starting your day early. I myself wake up at 5:00am everyday. I start my day with a prayer and some stretching exercises. Around 7:00 am, I am usually done with the most difficult task on my list (This is another tip on time management. Read on to find out.) and ready to take breakfast before continuing with the rest of my tasks. This routine allows me to be more productive as I get to work without disturbances. I get more things done and get to allot more time for my family and recreation. But I’m not the only one who does this. Check out these 23 successful people who wake up really early.
- Write your tasks for tomorrow today.
When you have planned your tasks a day before,you would be able to immediately start working on your tasks the moment you get up from bed. A common mistake that other people do is they start doing their checklist in the morning. This takes much of your time. You could be using this time already to accomplish your tasks. The best thing to do? Before your day ends, write your tasks for tomorrow and even the next few days so that you can start working on accomplishing the tasks on your checklist first thing in the morning. This will save you a lot of time the next day.
- Do the hardest task first.
Mark Twain said, “Eat a live frog first thing every morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.” Facing the live frog or the most daunting task in our list can be challenging yet rewarding. In the morning, there are not much distractions such as unexpected calls, emergency meetings and orders from your boss. Your head is still clear. You still have enough energy and enthusiasm. In addition, it also prevents you from procrastinating. Start your day by accomplishing the hardest task of the day and you would have more time take a breather and enjoy the rest of the day.
- Eliminate the unnecessary.
In our Effective Time Management Course, we ask our participants to identify the tasks that they need to prioritize and eliminate. How many of us spend minutes and hours doing things that do not matter? We consume our time stalking people on social networking sites, doing online shopping at the middle of the day, worrying endlessly, and talking about things that are not in our meeting’s agenda. There is always time for everything. Just ask yourself, “What is necessary for today?” If you eliminate unnecessary habits, you will have more time to do things that matter the most.
- Take a break to revitalize.
“You have to properly eat and enjoy your meal during breaktime. Do not work while eating,” my former boss told me. You may be wondering how taking a break saves you time. Well, when you take a proper break whether to eat or stretch and get some air, you give yourself time to revitalize. After your break, you go back to work with more energy. In effect, you work faster and more efficiently. You can get more things done and get home earlier.
Time management takes a lot of discipline. While 24/7 may not seem enough for everything that we do. Remember that we all get the same amount of time everyday. What would make the difference is how we make use of the time we have. How about you? How do you manage your time?