Poor time management can be considered a weakness. You will hear it often enough during performance and appraisal interviews. Only it is not limited to work. It begins to take over other aspects of your life.
Here are a few tips that have really helped me:
- We often complain about not having enough time. Rather than focusing on the little time we have, let’s try to thin about what you DO have time for. It does require a mind switch. Not complaining sounds easier said than done.
- If you feel like you are procrastinating and this is making you feel rather frustrated and annoyed, simply ask yourself what the reason is for your procrastination. Are you scared of the task ahead? Is it maybe too difficult, too easy, or plain boring? Is it because you are tired? It amazes me how much energy and time we waste when putting things off.
- Do a time review for one week and look at exactly where your time is going each day of the week both at the workplace and at home. Also investigate how you use your time on the weekends.
- Ask yourself the following question: What constitutes time well spent to me? Write a list of 5 things. Review your list. How often have you done these things in a) the past month? b) the past year?
- What do you think drains your time and energy the most? After this mental inventory has taken place try to set limits to the things that drain your time and energy. In that way, with the time you do have left, you will get more done in a more focused, efficient way.
I cannot emphasize enough how important it is to take lengthy breaks away from work at the weekend, in the evening and on holiday in order to help you stay productive in the long term.
We regularly underestimate how long something will take us. Start timing yourself doing tasks that you think could potentially take less time to achieve.
Since we will soon be approaching the end of the year it is a good opportunity to point out that the end or the start of a new year is always a good time to look back at how you’ve spent your time in the past year. Looking at this should help you reflect on how you would like to spend your time the coming year. What changes will you make?