If you want to achieve your professional and personal goals you need to start managing time effectively.
When you feel you don’t have any time, it’s easy to become overwhelmed, frustrated and stuck.
If you are currently good at managing your time these tips may improve your time management skills.
Alternatively, if you feel like you’re super busy and don’t have enough time in the day, these time management tips will help you manage your time more effectively and ensure you make progress on achieving your goals.
When you’re busy it’s often because you’re thinking about so many different things and have way too much on your to-do list.
The key to overcoming busyness and managing time effectively is to simplify.
It’s about doing far less to achieve bigger results.
How to start managing time effectively
This time management tips in this simple guide will show you 8 strategies you can start using to manage your time effectively.
It will help you to:
- Stop being ruled by an ever expanding to-do list
- Forget about working harder, and focus on working smarter instead
- Get more done in less time
- Expand your time freedom
- Increase your productivity, focus and results
Not having enough time is one of the biggest dangers we face in our professional and personal lives.
If you can take control of your time it frees up your mind to focus on your most important activities, creates more balance in your life and can help you achieve the results you want much quicker.
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How to effectively manage your time
Effectively managing time is a time management skill most of us want, but few have actually achieved.
If you want to move confidently towards achieving your goals quicker, this article will show you how to develop the time management skills that will help you start managing time effectively.
Instead of getting to the end of the day wondering what you’ve achieved, if you implement these time management tips, you’ll have a productive day every day.
When you take control of your time, you give yourself the best opportunity to achieve your goals, because you have the time freedom to invest in achieving them.
Let’s get started on the 8 time management tips that will help you achieve your goals quicker.
1. Set measurable goals
Having a small number of specific, measurable goals with deadlines to work towards ensures you manage your time effectively and eliminate the time thieves that don’t move you closer to your goals.
This goal setting process ensures you don’t overcommit, and have too many goals to work towards.
A smaller number of goals simplifies your time, energy and focus.
Too many goals create overwhelm and frustration and a feeling that you’re super busy and don’t have enough time in the day.
By simplifying your goal setting you’ll realise you actually have an abundance of time.
2. Focus on three priorities every day
It’s difficult to manage your time effectively if you have 10-15 things on your to-do list.
Simplify your focus and increase your productivity by prioritising only three activities to focus on each day.
This singular time and energy focus ensures your time is maximised to produce bigger results.
The smaller number of activities also creates a bigger opportunity to achieve something every day.
Achievement build motivation and momentum.
3. Schedule your activities
When you are crystal clear on your most important activities for the day, the next step is to schedule them into your diary.
Without a clear schedule it’s easy to get reactive, distracted and feel overwhelmed with the amount you have to do.
When the task or activity is scheduled, you feel more accountable to actually doing the work.
If you schedule an activity and the work gets completed, you feel more confident and motivated.
You know you’re making progress.
A great time management tip is to take ten minutes at the end of every day to schedule your activities for the following day.
You could also take some time on Sunday evening to schedule your most important activities for the following week.
4. Focus on the results you want to achieve
Managing time effectively is not about working harder.
Developing good time management skills is about getting clear on the result you want to achieve and looking at the simplest, easiest and most productive way of achieving that result.
If you can achieve a specific result in half the time of other people that’s highly valuable.
If you can leverage time through technology, outsourced experts or your team to produce a result quicker than you can, then you are maximising your productivity.
Remember, it’s not about time spent, it’s about delivering a result.
Spending extra time on something to make it perfect is not a productive use of time.
5. Start time blocking
If you have limited time to work each day or simply have a lot on, time blocking can be a life saver.
Simply get clear on the most important activity you want to work on and then block out time to do the work.
I always suggest working in 45 minute blocks and then taking a break before starting work again.
You can use a timer to track this time to ensure you stay focused and on task.
6. Plan your time
Planning ahead is an essential time management skill to develop if you want to manage time effectively.
Sunday evening is a great time to plan ahead to ensure Monday morning is a productive time, rather than a getting started time.
When you know what your goals for the week are, it becomes a lot easier to manage time effectively.
This up-front planning will help you stay organised, focused and productive.
Use a nightly routine to plan for the following day, and to recap on the progress you made that day.
7. Learn to delegate
It’s easy to want to do everything yourself.
You may think other people can’t do things as well as you.
Or, you’re worried about the time it will take to train someone up.
The thing is you can’t do everything by yourself.
If you think you can, you’ll end up spending more and more time learning new skills and working on the activities that you’re simply not very good at.
These are both great time thieves.
Start delegating and finding experts to do the important work you’re not great at.
This simple act will free up 100’s of hours every month for you to focus on your biggest skills and the activities that really move your business forward.
8. Things don’t need to be perfect
Perfectionism is a big time waster.
Rather than being happy with what they’ve created, people spend hours and sometimes days changing, updating and tweaking things until it is perfect.
There is no such things as perfection.
Create something you’re happy with and get it out there.
Alternatively, use your unique skills on a project and then pass it to someone else to finish.
This way time is not wasted and a big result can be achieved in a much shorter amount of time.
Managing time effectively is about understanding the value you create and then using those skills to deliver a result in the quickest, easiest and most productive way possible.
It is about leveraging time through collaboration, delegation, technology and outsourcing to create an even bigger result in less time.
Developing effective time management skills to help you achieve your goals quicker starts with looking at your personal time and focusing that time on delivering productive results.
A version of this article originally appeared on the Lucemi Consulting blog.
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