Are you winning at time management


Are you winning at time management?

We all do it when we get into the office, sit down with our morning coffee and start making that to-do list that we dread looking at everyday. Between emails, phone calls, follow ups and deadlines, sometimes this list looks near impossible.

It doesn’t have to be though…

Generally, the problem with time management is that we want to do it all. This tends to lead to “multi-tasking”. We use this word lightly because some people are excellent at multi-tasking. The rest of us think we are, but it usually leads to a lot of things started but nothing completed. 

Another issue that tends to lead to poor time management are the hundreds of interruptions that we encounter throughout a day. These could include meetings, customer service calls, client requests etc. These are inevitable and make it difficult to get work done sometimes.

The bad news is that these two issues are always going to be there and all we can do is accept it and do our best. The good news is that there are steps you can take to better manage your time and really work towards a more productive day!

1.     Prioritize! If you have a to-do list that’s taller than you, and you’ve also noticed you have back-to-back meetings all day, try and see what you can shave off. Try your best to reschedule to make you day more manageable. Prioritize these meetings to give yourself some time to clean up that to-do list.

2.     We all love making those to-do lists, but instead, try to make a list of things NOT to do. Go through your daily tasks and really ask yourself what needs to be done today and what can wait. You will be surprised what ends up on that to-don’t list!

3.     Focus! It’s so easy to get distracted during the day by co-workers, social media, smart phones, etc. Make sure you set certain times a day to break and take a breather. Ensure between those breaks you stay focused and attentive to the task at hand. You want to make sure you produce value in your work, and focusing helps you do this.

4.     Train yourself to work smart! Get into habits and routines. It makes your day a lot easier because you know what to expect. Set aside certain parts of the day for certain tasks. This not only creates self discipline, but once you get into the swing of things and start to develop these habits, you will learn to work a lot quicker.

5.     Finally, make sure you sleep and rest up. It’s incredible what a good nights sleep can do for your productivity. When you get to bed early and get up refreshed and ready to start your day, it makes focusing on tasks a lot easier.

When it comes down to it, there will always be interruptions, there will always be meetings and there will ALWAYS be a to-do list.

All you have to do is take a step back, breathe and evaluate. Follow the steps above and they will begin to have a positive impact on your productivity!

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