Do You Need Help with Time Management?
If your life feels out of control because you have too much to do and not enough hours in the day to do it, join the crowd struggling to manage a limited resource—time. Some of you may be facing a demanding work environment, whereas others may simply feel uncomfortable saying the word ‘no.’ Regardless, life can be more manageable and productive by following these simple strategies.
- Write a To-Do List. Please don’t store everything in your memory bank. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed and forget important details. Instead, separate the goals with the highest priority & list them along with the steps you need to meet each one. Then, focus on the steps of one goal for a chunk of time. Multi-tasking only distracts you when you jump from one unrelated goal to another and spreads your mental resources too thin.
- Focus on What’s Most Important. Give some thought to the best way to spend your time, rather than doing whatever grabs your attention or repeating the same habit out of pattern or routine. Some of your goals and steps are more valuable than others. In fact, research shows that the way people choose to spend their time when they go with the flow is flawed. Only 20% of your goals are valuable and require most of your effort. So try to pick and choose wisely.
- Learn When to Say ‘No.’ Yes, it’s flattering when you’re asked to contribute your special skills to a project. Yet now you know that you must establish your priorities. While it’s good to do extra work at the beginning of your career, wasting effort on a minor endeavor may cause you to fail on long-term goals. Beware of always saying ‘yes’ without weighing the pros and cons, attempting to take on too much when you’re not superhuman (who is?), and getting drawn into crisis situations because you’re so competent even though they end up draining you.
The bottom line: Choosing priorities is everything. So is balance. Above all, please do NOT sleep with your cell phone!