Time management is one of the most essential things in your business and your home life too. The ability to plan and organize isn’t always an easy skill to cultivate, though.
Some people are naturally excellent at being organized, and time management is a big part of that. So there is help from those fantastic people at https://becomeorganized.com/ to help you make sense of the chaos.
In the meantime, here are some other great time management tips and the key elements of time management that can help you turn your ‘messy’ into majestic.
The first step to achieving anything is to understand why you want to achieve it. Setting goals that foster a positive attitude towards your time management skills are essential. Consider that when you manage your time better, you have more free time and less stress.
One of the goals you set could be to see an increase in your free time. Perhaps you have a side project that you want to finish but never seem to get around to it. Side projects are great motivation to attack your time management with a positive attitude and make a real impact.
What Does Time Management Look Like?
On an operational level, time management looks like a well-organized schedule. Everything you do has a designated timed block, and you don’t worry about clashes in activities or being late.
Of course, there are days where what you want to do and what comes up don’t work well together. But for the most part, time management looks stress-free.
What Are The Time Management Elements?
Before getting into the elements of time management, it is important not to measure your time by anyone else’s standard. Other people have their routines, and what works for them might not work for you.
Finding your flow of time management is essential.
You might’ve heard the buzz about setting intentions for the day and maybe assumed that’s not something for you. Well, actually setting your intentions is one of the most critical things. And, the significant part about this is that it is very easy.
Start by creating a to-do list of everything that you need to get done. Then cross some things off. Yes, you are probably adding too much to your to-do list. There should be a few urgent items that you need to ensure are completed today, then a few minor tasks. When you carefully write down what you need to achieve, it is easier to focus on it and ensure it is completed. When you add too much to your to-do list, you are setting yourself unreal expectations, and when you don’t finish the list, you might feel like you failed.
If everything on the list has the same urgency – how do you choose which one to do first? Well, that is much harder than it sounds. You should order your to-do lists with the most important at the top.
The essential items are usually the high-value ones that will make your day easier, achieve something in your work, or positively impact you or your team.
Distractions are one of the main reasons we aren’t as productive as we could be. It just takes a moment without concentration to lose track of what we were doing.
Multitasking is also not great for us – switching between tasks will mean that we aren’t fully concentrating on one thing – but many. Each time we switch between tasks, you can lose over 20 minutes of focused concentration.
Losing that focused time can have a significant impact on our overall productivity. One of the tools that people use to manage their time while working is the Pomodoro method—giving a set amount of minutes and rest periods to each piece of work.
The focused periods in a Pomodoro timer are more productive than without. Their mobile phones are the biggest source of distractions for many people, so setting it to silent or putting it out of reach is a great idea.
Email notifications on the screen also pull focus away from the tasks you are doing. Take a moment to look at what your significant distractions are and take steps to minimize them.
Many people have certain times of day that become more productive and those that are more laid back. You can use those different times to do different tasks.
Focused periods are usually better suited to more intense workloads, most significant and urgent tasks that require a lot of concentration. The dips in our energy can be used for research and general admin tasks that don’t require a lot of effort. This way, you can maximize how productive you can be in the day.
Time blocking is one of the best ways to dedicate set hours to do the best work. Setting deadlines on the tasks will prevent other tasks from taking up time and keep you focused on the tasks. Time blocking is a great way to budget your time through the week.
It takes time to create time-positive habits that can significantly impact how we manage our time.
Building habits for your time management might look like a few different things:
- It might be you getting up earlier to make your to-do list.
- It might be color-coding your block by urgency.
- Perhaps you choose three tasks to cut from the list each day.
- Maybe you start to mindfully take note of what distracts you and begin reducing the impact that has on you.
Building habits takes time, and the better your foundations, the more beneficial they will be. So take your time when you start changing how you do things now and find out what suits you in planning and scheduling.
And remember that no matter what you do, there will always be interruptions to what you are doing. These mustn’t become a source of stress; since you are aware they will arise, you can factor in those sometimes.
Investing time into your time management skills can impact how you tackle both work and life outside of work.