Time management is the ability to effectively utilize your time in order to increase your productivity, efficiency, and outcomes. It is the process of planning and organizing your tasks in a way that more work is done in less time.
We all have 24 hours in a day, but why do some people accomplish more tasks than others? The answer lies in their time management skills.
People accomplishing more tasks in the same 24 hours do not have any superpowers. But, they have developed their time management skill which is more real than any superpower.
Good time management skills have a lasting impact on us that helps you to achieve more in minimum time. It also helps you to complete your tasks on time and achieve your goals.
Failing to do so can lead to a decrease in your overall productivity, effectiveness, and higher stress levels.
Consequences of Poor Time Management
Compromise in Quality of Work
When you aren’t able to control your time, then you quality of work is compromised. Because at the very last minute of the deadline, you hurry to complete the work and focus only on finishing the task, not on quality. With this approach of finishing the work, your quality of work is drastically reduced.
Increase in Stress
Due to poor time management, now, you have to complete more tasks in less time. This will increase pressure on your mind which will result in higher stress levels.
Suppose you are unable to complete your tasks in the given time slot, then it will downgrade your reputation in front of your seniors and colleagues. This is very harmful to your career.
Hinders your Career Growth
As your reputation is damaged due to your inability to complete the task on time. This will also put a question mark on your promotions and increment in other perks and benefits. Hence, it will affect your career growth.
If you also struggle in your time management, try these simple ways to effectively manage your time.
19 Time Management Tips
Take some minutes and plan your day. It will work as a path for you that will help you to spend your day in an organized way. Planning your day eliminates the time that you spend in thinking about what to do next.
As Benjamin Franklin said, “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.”
So, if you don’t have a proper plan, you will end up having nothing in your hands.
Planning your day is not wastage of time; instead, it is the time will-spent.
Follow Pareto Analysis (The 80-20 Rule)
The Pareto principle (also known as the 80-20 rule) states that roughly 80% of your outcomes come from 20% of your work. With this principle, you can set your priorities and can work on them more to get better outcomes.
Understand Your Goals
Goals give you the right direction in which you need to proceed. Along with setting goals, you need to understand them also.
If you don’t know, what your goals demand? What specific tasks do you need to complete? How much time will you need to complete those tasks? What will be the result of a specific task?
Then, you are not setting a goal; instead, you are just daydreaming.
So, understand your goals and the things they demand. Then, start working accordingly instead of just hitting the arrow in the dark.
It will help you to save the time that you are already wasting on unworthy tasks.
Write down your MUSTS
When you know your goal, write down all the important tasks or steps that your goal demands. Because when you write down your goals, your mind takes them as actionable things, not just as a dream.
And, you start working on them instead of just thinking.
As now you are working on your goal, so you jumped a step ahead of thinking. As a result, you have saved a chunk of time that you were spending on thinking again and again about a single thing.
Tony Robbins said, “If you can’t, you must. If you must, you can.”
Assign Time Limits
Now, you know the tasks you need to complete to reach your goal. Set a time limit for all these tasks. Be practical while assigning time limits.
This will help you to schedule your time in a much effective way. Commit to the time division and complete your tasks.
In this way, you will be the one who has control over you and your time.
Jim Rohn said, “Either you run the day or the day runs you.”
Learn to say “No”:
Time is precious. You can buy anything, but not the time. So, don’t waste it on people and things that are not important.
Some people struggle in saying ‘no’ because they don’t want to upset anyone. But, this will pressurize you and can even damage your success.
Suppose you have some undone work that is assigned by your boss. And, at the same time, you have also said ‘yes’ to your colleague who wants you to complete his task. This will create a burden over you. This burden will not let you work with your full potential which may lead to poor outcomes.
Also, chances are there your boss doesn’t like your work that can hinder your promotion or growth. In this way, you can get in trouble.
So, check your schedule and then answer to any party invitation or any help asked by a colleague.
People think multitasking helps them to complete more tasks in less time with same quality standards of single-tasking. But, it is a myth as proven by many studies.
When you multitask, your mind slows down and clutters. And, your quality work converts into quantity work and more prone to errors. Now, you have an additional work of correcting those errors. And, which is again wastage of time.
So, don’t multitask.
Don’t Stress over Little Things
When you are chasing big goals, try to avoid waste time on making small things perfect. Complete your main and important tasks and avoid minute details of your work. This will only waste your time.
If you have time after completing the main tasks, you can consider these things else no need to do this.
Sometimes all we need is to begin the task. Because there are some tasks that are hard to start. We all avoid such tasks because they seem hard to complete. But, once you start doing these tasks, you automatically get ideas to complete them. Such tasks don’t need to be perfect.
And, if you keep on thinking that how to do it, then you will not be able to complete the task on time and hence, this will be a waste of time.
So, keep in mind that there are times when you have to avoid perfectionism.
Audit Your Week
Audit your week as it will help you to find flaws. Find out where you spend more time than required. Then, try to eliminate this time with a proper plan or schedule.
Auditing your week will also help in finding the effectiveness of your schedule. If you find some lag or some problem in your schedule, then you can change it rather than working ineffectively for a long period of time.
This will help you save your time.
Reduce your Workload
People have a habit to complete all the tasks themselves so that they are done right. But, if you divide your workload and give a part of your work to someone else. Then, you can reduce your pressure and also, help others to grow.
As we all know, reducing pressure on the mind can help you to be more productive and efficient. This will also save you time and can spend that time in some other task.
Get Inspired while Waiting
Some people schedule a separate block of time to get inspired with the help of podcasts, songs, or a book reading. But, this is a waste of time. Because there are some tasks that require waiting like bus stations, airport terminals, banks, etc.
You can utilize this time and can listen to those podcasts, songs, or can read a book and get inspired. You can also use this time to manage your emails and phone calls.
Tony Robbins said, “In life you need either inspiration or desperation.”
Similar Tasks Together
Complete your similar tasks together. Like, you can schedule a frame of time to answer phone calls and emails. This will keep you away from any distractions while working. And, you will be able to complete your tasks on time.
Schedule suitable breaks in between your tasks. This will refresh your mind and help you to be focused on the task. These breaks can be in the form of tea or coffee break, a short walk, etc.
With refresh mind, you will be more focused and will be able to complete your task efficiently that too within a time limit.
Yes, taking a break is more productive and helps you to be focused as it is already examined by the Harvard Business Review.
Appreciation plays a major role in our life to stay motivated. If you are not getting appreciation for a long period of time, then you will end up losing your efficiency and motivation. So, if nobody is appreciating you, appreciate yourself for working so hard and also for coming this far. Reward yourself from time to time; this will help you to stay motivated in your life. And, when you stay motivated, you will automatically work with your full potential.
Now, you may wonder how exercise can help with time management? But, the reality is that exercise works as a stress buster. Studies show that exercise is very effective at reducing fatigue, improving alertness and concentration, and enhancing overall cognitive function.
As concentration is improved, hence you can more efficiently and can work more in less time. So, spare some time for exercise and keep yourself physically and mentally fit.
Sleep is one of the most effective time management strategies. You feel more energetic after adequate sleep.
Some people sleep more than the time they actually need. They can reduce their sleeping time and can get more work done. Also, there are people who do not sleep as required due to which their mind does not function with its full potential. So, both types of people need to manage their time of sleep. This will help them to be more productive.
This article claims that through adequate sleep, you can increase your personal productivity and effectiveness by at least 20 percent, reduce anxiety and stress, and increase your health and well-being in the process.
Commit to Schedule
Each and every way for time management is useless if you do not commit to your schedule. Because making a schedule or a time table is easy but following them is not a piece of cake. It takes a lot of dedication and commitment to follow them.
So, make a schedule, and follow it with dedication and commitment. Then, you will surely achieve what you want in your life.
Vince Lombardi said, “The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavour.”
Benefits of Time Management
Get More Work Done
When you are able to manage your time properly, then you have more time left. So, you can utilize this time in your other tasks. This will make you get more work done in those same 24 hours.
Better Decision Making
With proper time management, you have more free time. So, you feel more relaxed and stay calm. This calmness helps you to make better decisions that give you the desired outcomes.
Peter Drucker said, “Making good decisions is a crucial skill at every level.”
Good time management skills can lower stress and anxiety.
When you have control of your time, you can complete all your task on time. Then, automatically, last-minute pressure to complete your task is reduced and hence, also the stress.
So, try to manage your time and complete all your task before or on time.
Work on Time
With proper time management, you can easily complete your task on time. Because, now, you get more time to complete your pending or important tasks.
This completion of work on time also builds your reputation in front of your seniors and colleagues.
With more spare time, your mind works with calmness. This calmness builds your focus and concentration.
As a result, you work with your full potential which increases your productivity.
More Time to Furnish your Skills
You can enhance your skills by educating yourself in your free time that you gathered by managing your time. This enhancement in your skills will help you to grow more in your life.
Better Personal Life
Now, you can spend more time with your family and friends that help you to create beautiful memories. This improves your quality of life and you can easily manage your personal and office life.
So, this is why time management is important in your success. Learning this skill is not easy, but also not impossible.
So, practice this as much as you can, this will surely improve your personality and help you reach your goals.