As we speed headlong into another year, it’s useful to sit back and look at how we can better manage our time. Proactive time management means you have a plan in place to manage the things you need to do. With a plan, even if something unexpected happens, you won’t be so overwhelmed that it completely throws you off.
While we all have the same 24 hours in any given day, the key is to better manage your life and where your attention goes. Here are some tips to help you achieve that goal.
1. Eliminate distractions
Start by eliminating the pointless distractions in your life. That may mean getting off social media for a few months. It may mean turning off the news on TV or unsubscribing from streaming services. Some people even lock up their phone for a set time. By eliminating these energy-drainers, you’ll have more time to focus on what matters.
Prioritise what matters most and do what matters when it matters. Look at what yields the highest return and focus on those first. Too often, we keep what’s crucial for ‘later’ and procrastination helps to delay the task. Instead, by getting the hardest tasks out of the way FIRST, you’ll not only feel more accomplished, but will have more time to breeze through the easier tasks because you have already achieved what you were avoiding.
3. Follow a daily routine
The truth is that with structure comes freedom. After all, you’ll be deciding on your own daily routine. It’s up to you to tailor it to suit your life. The key point to note is to achieve your priorities in an efficient manner and orderly manner. Routine will eliminate a lot of decision fatigue in your life. You’ll know exactly what to do every single day and can coast through it in ‘flow state’ while you accomplish more with less effort.
4. Get organised
This simple tip will save you hours of frustration and stress. Declutter your home and workspace so that it’s neater and requires less cleaning. The more orderly and neat things are, the less time you’ll need to spend searching for the items you need.
5. Set deadlines
Deadlines are like invisible bosses that keep prodding you to stay focused and complete the tasks on time. Parkinson’s law states that the amount of work expands to fill the time available for its completion. So, the less time you give yourself, the faster you’ll get the work done, within reason! Deadlines should motivate you to work faster, but not be so unreasonable that they overwhelm you. Just remember the differences between busy and productive.
Apply these time/attention management tips in your life and you’ll be amazed at how much more productive you become. You’ll not only feel like you have more time, but your stress levels will drop considerably.
What are you waiting for? You can start implementing them in your life today!