Ten Time Tips

 

 

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Bring Back Your Joy For Life!

  

 

Ten Time Management Tips 

 

TIME

 

In the workplace or at home, managing everything that comes along can be quite a challenge. Here's my ten top tips for managing your time.

Know

Know exactly what is on your plate, what is in the pipeline and when it is due. Keep a master tracking list of projects & tasks. Choose a system that suits how you work. Outlook tasks, a diary, a workbook or an app on your tablet or iPad. (I use Planner Plus as it syncs with Outlook and has reasonably good task management capabilities, although I still have a wish list of improvements! And you can get some other good project management apps as well.)

 


Include

Include EVERYTHING that goes on and is needed in your life. Start and end of day, lunch, planning time, weekends, holidays, self-care, family and more. Everything! Putting things on the back burner long-term leads to stress, health issues and overwhelm. Your work life is not separate from the rest of your life – it’s ALL your life!

 

 

Prioritise & Plan

Schedule time to prioritise and plan. Again, do this in a way that suits you. Consider Start of Week planning to get a view of the week coming. This is useful for the whole team in your office. End of week is useful to measure progress. End of day sort out your desk and workload so that you can start the new day ready to go.

 

First things first: Do what is important. Ask if the thing you are considering doing is contributing in a positive way to your goals (have you written out your top five goals?). Estimate a time limit for each task then double it! Any spare time at the end is a bonus. Slot each task into a timeslot during the day (after you have pencilled in lunch and breaks needed). Anything leftover on the list gets scheduled in for the coming days.

 

The Eat that Frog principle says to do the biggest ugliest most important task first BUT…see Understand Yourself

 


Drop the Rock

Life goes on in a never ending stream. If you wait to see an opening before you drop something into the stream you’ll be waiting forever! Drop the rock right into the flow of things then watch as the stream moves around it. In other words, pop things into your schedule and watch the flow of work and life move around it to make space. Well…watching might not quite be enough so…

 


Be Flexible

Re-plan, reschedule, reorganise as needed.

 


The Four D’s

For everything that comes your way consider one of the four D’s:


DO IT
This is something that requires immediate action, or can be done quickly without disrupting your schedule.

 

Decide When
Put the item on your task list and into a scheduled time.

 

Delegate
…when the task can be delegated to someone else. Check if it needs you to follow up on completion and put that as a task in your schedule.

 

Dump It
For things that need no action – get rid of it so it is not a distraction.


Distractions

Know what distracts you and remove it: Facebook, messy desk, phone etc. Close the door for scheduled periods to focus on specific tasks. Go somewhere else to work on important tasks or projects. If you use post-it notes all over the place to remind yourself of things, transfer the information to your task list and get rid of the distracting notes.

 

Say No!

Learn to say no to things you genuinely can’t do, which don’t serve your goals or which cause problems. Remember this saying when people drop their problems in your lap: “Your lack of planning does not constitute a crisis on my part!” (having said that, compassion and helping others is a wonderful thing!)

 

Understand Yourself

Understand what motivates and inspires you. Take the time to feed the fires of motivation and inspiration. It makes other tasks lighter and more fun. Check out Ted.com for amazing inspiration. 


Understand your best times for working and schedule core tasks during your most productive times. Some are morning people, others do their best work in the afternoon or at night. Eat that Frog during your most productive and focused times.

 

 

Take Breaks

Make sure you schedule in regular breaks. You wouldn’t drive your car without stopping for fuel, oil and tyre checks…it’s no different for you. Drink plenty of water, breathe and stretch out your body…get some sun! It will make you more productive during your working time.

 

 

Bonus Tip: Do the dance

Celebrate your successes. Review what has worked well for you and apply it in the future.

 

 

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