Practices to become the master of your own time
Managing time isn’t about finishing as many tasks as possible. It’s about simplifying how you work, doing things faster, and have stress less life.
Time is not what we create or given to you, it is what we find. I assure you — there really are enough hours in a day for everything you’d like to do, but it may take a bit of rearranging to find them. Remember- There are so many tricks available to manage your time effectively. These are some tips that I find helpful (over time by experience and reading), but everyone is different.
1. Plan Ahead and Create a simple “To Do” list
Take the first 30 minutes of every day to plan your day. Don’t start your day until you complete your time plan. It need not to be in front of your system you could plan while walk, travel or in bathroom, Try to think about every work and how to approach your work, Copy to a scheduler later if necessary. Writing it might further help to register it in your mind.
It won’t be easy to create this habit, so take a few trial weeks and Try record all your thoughts, conversations and activities for those weeks. This will help you understand how much you can get done during the course of a day and where you are losing your time. You’ll see how much time is actually spent producing results and how much time is wasted on unproductive things.
Try to create a Daily/weekly planner template after this exercise.
Schedule time for interruptions. Don’t forget to Plan time to be pulled away from what you’re doing, it might to help a colleague or to attend an important call, but planning ahead for this is important.
2. Review meeting notes just before and after any call or meeting
Take five minutes before every call, task or meeting to decide what result you want to attain. Take five minutes after each call and activity to determine whether your desired result was achieved. If not, what was missing? How do you put what’s missing in your next call or activity?
3. Give your Complete dedication
Practice not answering every un-important calls and e-mails when they show up. Disconnect/Mute messaging apps like whatsapp. Block out other distractions like Facebook and other forms of social media unless you use these tools in your business. Time spent browsing or gaming can be one of the biggest drains on productivity.
Don’t instantly give people your attention unless it’s absolutely crucial. Instead, schedule a time for all that. Every time you get interrupted with a phone call or an email, or a message, it distracts you from what you are working on. The time it takes to get re-focused on what you were doing is lost.
When you remove the things that create the distractions, the distractions will go away with it and you can spend more quality time on work. Put up a “Do not disturb” sign when you absolutely have to get work done. Don’t use it always to lose its weightage.
4. Finish everything at once
When you are in a task, try to finish it at once, don’t mix many works together like doing a task answering a call checking a mail and helping a friend. Assign a time for everything separately.
For example I Schedule twice a day to go through all the e-mails in my inbox. The goal is to have an empty inbox with everything being read and processed one time. Having an empty inbox makes me feel I don’t have anything pending to do. And batching it reduces the switching costs– you can get a lot more done when you’re doing only email vs. email along with work.
It’s possible, that people might think you are trying to avoid them. But eventually the reverse will happen, focus leads to increased output, and people will start to see that you are actually working more. And you will find more time to attend them too.
5. Give importance to values and goals
Each week try to make at least one goal related to a value you got or want to have. It could be a reminder to call someone, or read something, or a charity work, or donate blood etc. As you make these goals, try to schedule them in your calendar. This will keep you from having them be vague goals that you wouldn’t get around to. They become appointments that you want to keep.
6. Give importance to yourself
There are some goals that we always have a hard time with, most notably to read a book, exercise or play shuttle. Numerous studies have linked a healthy lifestyle with work productivity. Similar to getting enough sleep, exercising and eating healthily. All these help boost energy levels, clear your mind, and allow you to focus more easily.
7. Delegate everything you can
This one is the hardest to learn, but it would be extremely helpful. People always thinks that they are always the person most qualified to do something, and that might get you into a lot of trouble.
But even if it were true, that doesn’t mean that you should be the one to do it. In fact most things don’t need you to do them at all, someone else can do them for you. And either they’ll do them better, or they’ll give you an opportunity to teach them how to be better, which makes their and your lives and career better as well.
8. Leave a buffer-time between tasks
When you rush from task to task, it’s difficult to appreciate what you are doing and to stay focused and motivated. Allowing yourselves down-time between tasks can be a breath of fresh air for your brains.
9. Don’t worry about your to-do list
One of the fastest ways to demotivate yourself is to think about your massive to-do list. Realize that no amount of thought will make it any shorter. At this point of time, all you can do is focus on the one task before you. One step at a time.
10. Be honest with yourself
Be committed, be professional, and follow through.
A determination to accomplish what you want will take you anywhere. Enjoyment should always be the goal. We often get so caught up in work that we forget to enjoy what we’re doing. Even when we try to work smarter, we’re still often too focused on getting things done. This is not right. Always ask yourself: What can I do differently to spend more time enjoying what I’m doing? The goal should be to arrange your tasks in a way that you’re enjoying your daily life along with work.
Be curious. Be open to opportunity. Know yourself. Embrace your passions. Wonderful things will happen.
Best of luck implementing these tips…