General Tips for Time Management
The interactive world we live in allows for plenty of distractions. There are distractions by our coworkers or our spouses, as well as our kids. Then there are our own vices viewing the latest sports scores or browsing social media aimlessly.
Some distractions are welcome. But all too often, they can become a nuisance that interferes with our productivity.
With those in mind, you can use the following tips to help you stay focused and manage your time well:
Try to determine your most productive work times.
We have ebbs and flows in productivity. For instance, if you are a writer, you may find writing in the morning is your most optimal time. If that is the case, concentrate your writing schedule to mornings only and use the afternoon for other tasks.
You may need to track what you are doing for several days or weeks to see when and how often these optimum times happen. There are time management tools like RescueTime that can help you do the tracking for you.
Come up with a plan on what success means.
Just throwing together a bunch of tasks and having no tasks defined are time stealers.
If you are working in the office, work with your manager and determine the specific kinds of tasks or goals you need to do so you could increase your productivity. Your manager will have his or her department’s objectives in mind which can be used to determine how you can contribute to those. You may even use these as part of your performance review. The great thing about doing this consistently is that you can make adjustments to the tasks that are not working out or where you need extra help.
Your manager will appreciate you for trying to become more productive and for being proactive.
Give yourself a break.
Having a well-defined plan is a great way to increase your productivity. But don’t beat yourself up if you happen to have a few days that are not as productive as others. Sometimes, the tasks are going to slip up and you are going to be more distracted than others. It’s normal and you should account for some down time to recharge yourself. No one is expecting you to be a productivity robot.
Time management is a skill that needs to be learned and applied. It takes some adjusting in the beginning but is really just a matter of changing how you structure your work and the tasks you need to do to complete it. This requires a consistent commitment to making it work.