There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens – Ecclesiastes 3:1
We all have the same 24hours in a day which at times is not enough to accomplish all what is needed, yet there are some people who accomplish all what they want without rushing. This is so amazing that one must ask how they did it. The simple answer is that they know how to manage their time properly.
Time management is the coordination of tasks and activities to maximize the effectiveness of an individual's efforts. Essentially, the purpose of time management is enabling people to get more and better work done in less time. When employees' working hours are managed to the best effect, they tend to be happier, more creative and less prone to burn out.
1. Goal Setting
Goals can be set in a right or wrong way. Goals with poor results, imply that they were wrongly set and should be edited. For goals to have the right results, they must be SMART. That is Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound. When setting SMART goals, you can clarify your objectives, focus your efforts, use your time and resources efficiently and productively, and maximize your chances of achieving favorable results.
Identify the most important activities of the day and do them first. As soon as you accomplish the thing that matters most, you feel a sense of satisfaction for the rest of the day. You can have a fulfilling night and not feel guilty about unfinished assignments. You can apply the 80/20 or Pareto principle. Learn more about how to PRIORITIZE and organize your life.
Delegation is important in time management. To delegate is to assign a specific task to someone else and give them the authority to complete that task. Delegation helps to save time , and it allows more work to be completed faster. Managers must delegate tasks to employees because they often have to focus on higher-level tasks.
4. Avoid Multitasking
We often think that multitasking is an effective way of getting things done, but it is more beneficial to focus on one thing instead of dividing your attention among several things. It’s impossible for us to multitask. What we often call multitasking is the act of rapidly shifting our focus from one task to another. It only reduces the quality of the work. Focus on one task at a time and finish it to preserve its quality. Multitasking hampers productivity. Learn more about the dangers of multitasking by watching THIS VIDEO.
5. Problem Solving
It is important to identify problems earlier so that they can be handled on time to enhance productivity. Make an effort to decide how much time you need to devote to each task. Having problems solved on time will improve the quality of result at the end of the day.
6. Schedule Tasks
Get into the habit of setting a time for each item on your daily to-do list and add it to your calendar. The end times of tasks can serve as deadlines to keep you on track. With them, you’ll be aware of how much time you have to finish an activity, thus encouraging you to remain focused on it and beat the clock.
7. Learn to Say "NO"
Taking on too many responsibilities often leads to time being wasted. Learn to say "NO" when it’s necessary. There is only so much that you can do. Let others know when you aren’t able to come through. It’s better to say “NO” rather than to accept and not be able to devote as much time to it as necessary, resulting in poor work. Sometimes you need to decline opportunities. Make sure to accept only the commitments that you have time for and that you sincerely care about.
8. Plan Ahead
Start each day with a clear idea and understanding of what you need to accomplish. Knowing what you need to do for the day or week will help you to stay on track, focused and productive. Planning also enables you to anticipate possible issues that may arise. Your plans can include contingencies for unforeseen circumstances. Be proactive instead of reactive.
9. Take Action
Many people find it difficult to take action when needed; they instead procrastinate which has a negative effect on productivity. This can result in wasting essential time and energy. Most people are scared of starting for fear of failure. You never know what will happen so you might as well try. If you keep waiting for the right time to start then you’ll never start. The best time to start anything was last year, the second best was yesterday and the third is RIGHT NOW. In addition to procrastination, here are 10 other mistakes that youths make.
10. Deal with Stress Wisely
Stress usually occurs when the work load becomes too heavy and difficult to accomplish. At this stage, tiredness sets in thus reducing the quality of the output. Incorporate stress relief strategies into your daily routine. For instance, you could apply the 60/10 rule; for every 60-minute work period, take a 10-minute break to relax and destress. This will keep you refreshed for the next work period. Learn more about Stress Management Techniques.
The ability to manage your time effectively is important. Good time management leads to improved efficiency and productivity, less stress and more success in life. It improves work-life balance, makes you happier, maximizes your strengths, and helps you to reach your goals more efficiently. Work smarter, not harder, to accomplish more in less time.
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Ephesians 5: 15 - 16 ESV
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