When it comes to our time, it’s easy for us to blast through the week feeling as if we just didn’t have enough of it to accomplish what we set out to do. However, is the problem really that we don’t have enough time or is something else at fault? The truth is, we don’t need to be better time managers, we need to be better self managers. Time is constant. It can’t and won’t change. However, we are changeable and flexible and we can begin to allow time to work for us instead of the alternative.
Making Time Work for You
ENERGY – One big reason why we don’t maximize our time is because our energy levels are not where they should be. You want to hammer down and plow through your agenda but you simply don’t have the energy for it. If that’s you, it’s important to figure out what’s causing your low energy. Are you sleeping enough? Are you eating a healthy diet? Are you getting some exercise? All of these things directly correspond with your energy levels and your ability to perform. If you have low energy, begin adjusting these areas in your life and you will see some improvement. If you’re not sure what to do or where to start, consult an expert. They can help you along the right path.
FOCUS – Another reason why people don’t maximize their time is due to a lack of focus. Sometimes, a lack of focus can be a result of low energy, but often times it’s simply a result of not giving yourself priorities. When everything on your to-do list carries the same degree of importance, you’ll never be as effective as you want to be. Break your list down. There will be things must be done today, others that can wait, others that can be delegated and there may even be some that you can stop doing altogether. If you give yourself these priorities, you will actually get the most important things done without carrying the stress of a huge list of things to do. You may even realize that you’re doing way more than you should have been doing in the first place.
Another helpful tool for focus is to categorize your days of the week. For instance, Monday could be for big picture and administrative tasks that can help you set up your week for success. Tuesday could be for staff meetings and personal contacts based on the results of Monday. Wednesday could be a creative thinking day, and so on.
SAY NO – When you only have 168 hours to work with in a week, its important that you’re doing what matters most to you. You cannot let other people’s agenda take over the agenda that you’ve set for yourself. Sure, if you need to, then do that thing that someone is asking you to do. But, if you don’t have to, be willing to say no to the asks of others. You know what is most important for you and if anything begins to dilute your effectiveness in accomplishing your goals and the expectations of your boss, then you simply must say no to it. Trust me, everything will be ok if you say no.