“I don’t have enough time”—Here’s the easiest excuse we have been making for not getting work done. And we’ve got to stop.
We can’t say we didn’t have enough time. Why? Well, H. Jackson Brown Jr., the author of the New York Times bestseller “Life’s Little Instruction Book”, has the perfect answer to your question. He says: “Pleas don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.”
Quite frankly, those of us who make this excuse often have the wrong idea of “being productive”. Most days, they just scurry from tasks to tasks, making calls, reading/replying emails, running errands, and other kinds of stuff that wastes a lot of time but keeps them BUSY.
Now, we can promise you that being busy isn’t the same as being productive. In fact, you have got more than enough time in your day for everything you’d like to do. For which you will have to sit down and rethink your time management strategy.
In this blog post, we’ve compiled a list of time management habits and hacks to help you manage your time effectively and hopefully nudge you in the right direction.
Do you want to be hyper-productive with your day?
Staying organized is important, especially when it comes to developing an efficient time tracking software. Think of it this way—if a majority of your work hours are being spent on digging through files and locating a critical piece of information, you would never be able to work on what you’re supposed to be working on. If you are a busy bee kind of person (like most people around you) using tools like a cloud-based file management tool or a to-do list app will save you tons of time in the long run.
We understand it’s important to get accomplished in a day. But it doesn’t mean you have to over-schedule yourself. Because when you do so, you will end up frazzled and clueless about what you are doing and what’s up next. Also, if you seriously want to avoid random things that will be popping up throughout the day, be careful about what you schedule on a given day.
Being able to get the most done at the same time is kind of a big deal for many of us. However, productivity and time management experts suggest that it’s better to focus on one thing at a time rather than dividing it between several things. Remember, the measure of project success isn’t about the quantity of the tasks you complete, it’s about quality.
Shari McGuire, author of Take Back Your Time: 101 Simple Tips to Shrink Your Work-Week and Conquer the Chaos in Your Life suggests that organizations should consider keeping meetings as short and to the point as possible. The point that many of us spend too much time attending or hosting meetings has been on debate for a long time. And as it turns out, it’s a true fact. There is no need to call in meetings for everything—go for a meeting only if necessary. It will make everyone a whole lot happier and productive to have a few extra hours for important tasks in a day.
The ability to outsource and delegate tasks when necessary is the biggest time savors. The concept is simple, your time is too important, so you need to assign it to tasks that are most important. If there are tasks in your to-do that others could easily complete—delegate them. Doing this will give you more time to efficiently complete tasks that are at the top of your priority list.
Your mind needs to be at its best when you are doing something important, like working. But your mind would never be at its best if you are constantly letting yourself getting distracted in the abyss called the internet. Luckily, there are apps to help you limit the amount of online time you are wasting. Go ahead, give them a try!
Have you ever tried a time tracking software? If not, then you are making the biggest time management mistake of your life. There are apps right now that can help you track the exact amount of time you are spending on a specific task, event, or activity. They can help you set timers and make sure that you are spending the right amount of time on the right task, thereby encouraging productive work and reducing cost. You can even set time for breaks or to check your social media accounts. This way you won’t compromise with work and you will also be able to recharge yourself from time to time.
The next time management trick is to put yourself in a “work bubble”. Wondering what that is? Well, it’s your personal workspace (imaginary, not literally) where you keep yourself cut off from all the workplace distractions. When you are in a work bubble, you get stuff done faster and most productively. No chatty colleague, no unwanted calls/texts—just you and your work.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed with a stacked to-do list. That brings us to our next time management and productivity habit—it’s okay to say no sometimes. You don’t need to say yes to every task or activity that comes in your way because it will only make things harder. Want to be productive? Do what’s necessary and know when to decline.
It’s okay if you’re a perfectionist. In fact, it’s wonderful. But if you’re wasting your precious time nitpicking over every task or project you have completed, you are not helping anyone. Here’s what you need to understand: rather than continuing to find faults in what’s already done, be realistic about what’s left and move on to the next item in your to-do list.
If you’re constantly struggling to manage your time, particularly when it comes to work, there 10 time management tools and tips will help you turn things around. Just put some of them into practice and you will definitely notice your time management skills improved tenfold.
Have a few productivity tips that you would like to share? Tell us all about them in the comments below!