Effective Time Management
Time Management is a skill to use your time in the most effective and productive way. It is the art of using your daily quota of 24 hours in such a way that the amount of work completion is more and the stress levels are kept low. One can cut the burdens of busy-ness through organization and prioritisation - 'Organization' to determine 'how' the work shall be done and 'Prioritization' to determine 'what' work must be done right away. This may take some time initially but will then become a habit. In effect, it can relieve your stress, help you find more time for more important activities and restore joy to your busy life.
It is important for us to understand that we function at difference energy levels during different times of the day. All people do not feel their highest energy levels during the mornings. It may surprise you, but many people are at their peak energy levels during evenings! Figuring out this peak energy level time will help because if the most important work / activity is scheduled for this time, then the outcomes is better and faster than expected. Routine / boring tasks can be scheduled for the other parts of the day.
Listed below are a few tips to give you an idea of how you can start an effective time management program with your life.
- Start with YOU. Decide that you want to organize your life. It won't be easy, but it's possible.
- Break large jobs into small jobs. Complete one small job at a time. The satisfaction of completing one job will motivate you to finish up the next one too.
- Make a 'To-do' list to help you stay organized. Be realistic whilst deciding what is to be done on each day. Don't list up more than you can possible accomplish. Try to complete all that's scheduled for the day.
- Keep a definite place for everything so that whenever you need something, you don't have to search for it. Things frequently used must be easily accessible.
- Get rid of extra paper. Handle each paper only once. Decide right away whether you are ever going to need it. If yes, file it into the appropriate folder; or else, discard it. Accumulating too much paper can make you stressful whenever you even think of sorting the unwanted from the wanted.
- Break the habit of making notes on bits of papers. Write notes in the appropriate place in the first time itself.
- Spend 15 minutes daily to clear your inbox. Sort incoming mail into categories for easy retrieval.
- Be realistic in the amount of information that you can read and absorb. Limit the number of subscriptions you take and copy articles as soon as you read them. Discard the publication thereafter.
- Label everything that contains things - binders, folders, suitcases, et all.
- Schedule multiple appointments for the same day instead of spreading them throughout the week. This saves your travel time greatly.
- Use "in-between" times to get things done. Many tasks can be done in-between appointments, TV shows or outings.
- Learn to say 'NO'. Remember, every time you say 'yes' to a new demand, you say 'no' to a previous commitment.
Time Management is not a jargon that is difficult to abide by. In fact, it can easily get into our system. All it requires is our determination to incorporate time management techniques into our daily routine. As 'Lord Chesterfield' once said, "Take care in your minutes, and the hours will take care of themselves."