How many of you have fallen back on your schedule owing to procrastination? Or is it just that you have too much on your plate and just can’t finish everything on time? Time management is crucial for productivity. I did an article on increasing productivity a week ago, so if you need tips on that, make sure you check it out. Since getting things done on time is the biggest problem for all those who work, study or live, I decided to compile for you a concise list of time management hacks that work.
This is an article on time management, so I’m not going to waste your time on the chit-chat. Let’s get down to business.
10 time management hacks that work:
- Schedule! Everything! From your most important tasks to the negligible ones, make it a habit to input it in your schedule. Write it down, in a paper notebook or a smartphone app. The means doesn’t really matter as long as you make a schedule. Time your activities throughout the day so you can see where you spend all those valuable minutes. Also, jot down the thoughts that linger in your head. At the end of the day, you can check if your thoughts have been useful or just loiter.
- To-Do Lists! I just cannot describe how important this is. Keeping a to-do list helps you on so many levels. Writing all that you need to get done makes sure you don’t forget anything. Not every to-do list will do, though. You have to learn to prioritize the tasks so you’re able to do more in less time. Check out this article on making an effective to-do list for a better understanding.
- The first thing in the mornings before you get to work, plan out your day. Do not start working unless your time-table is complete. Scheduling tasks is not the only important scheduling you have to do. Scheduling time to make a time schedule is also very important.
- Plan for time to work and for time to be pulled away from work. You sure don’t work for all the hours that you’re in the office. Therefore, it should serve you well if you scheduled tasks keeping in mind that for some minutes or hours, you’ll have interruptions. That way, you can finish your work better and not have to blame lateness on interruptions.
- About to start an activity? Wait. Give it 5 minutes to think. Is it very important or are there more urgent stuff on the waiting list? Also take 5 minutes to look at your work after you finish it. There may be ways you can improve it. Checking on your work saves you the hassle of having to go through it later saving much of your time. This break or buffer-time between tasks give you time to appreciate what you’re doing and clears your mind as well.
- Do I need to tell you about this? Focusing completely on the task at hand is what makes you able to finish it quickly and well within the deadlines. Close all irrelevant tabs on your browser, put your phone out of sight and on silent, turn off all that distracts you and focus on your task completely. You’ll be amazed at how much you can complete within a short time when you’re focused.
- Get habituated to what you work with. For me, writing is a routine task. I have to do a lot of writing – for work, college, my blog and much more. But it never gets boring. Why? Because I make it a point to write something every day of the week. I am so habituated to writing that my mind doesn’t find writing boring. Instead, my fingers start itching when I don’t. Maybe you could turn your work into habits. Try it. It sure works for me.
- Block out social media. Completely. Oh, you use Facebook and Twitter for business? But you don’t have to be online all the time, do you? Schedule a specific time for your social media presence and other than those times, log out. Social media can be distracting and your time is precious. Guard it the way Sméagol guarded the ring. (No, not that badly.)
- Say “No” to the “Yes, sure” drug. You have to be able to decline requests if you really don’t have space in your schedule. This advice is generic, but you don’t want to leave out your work to help others. Be polite about it, though. We want everyone in the workplace to be our friends.
- Be healthy. This is among the best time management hacks that work. All your above efforts won’t take you anywhere if you’re unable to even get to work due to bad health. Take care of yourself. Getting good sleep, exercise and staying healthy should be your first priority. I think I’ll do an article on maintaining healthy habits at work in a few weeks. (Keep tuning in if you’re interested.)
Finally, my compilation of the 10 time management hacks that work has come to an end. There are a lot more that you can find on the internet with a small search on Google. However, the longer the list is, the more confused we get. That is why I wanted to be concise and still bring to you the ones that are a sin to be neglected. You should enjoy your work and not feel that it is a burden on your shoulders.
Hope the list of time management hacks that work is useful to you. If you have anything to add to it that you think is indispensable, please write it in the comments. Let us and everyone else know your thoughts.
We’ll be back soon with another handy article.