If you want to achieve something great in your personal life or business life, you’ve got to manage your time effectively. You’ve got to know how much time you spend on each task, how long things take, and what tasks move you closer to your ultimate goal. In fact, you’ll probably never become successful without becoming good at managing your time.
You see, if you don’t have a plan, you won’t accomplish anything. And if you don’t accomplish anything, you won’t get anywhere. So whether you want to change careers, start your own business, lose weight, save money, travel the world, or do just about anything else, you’ve got to learn how to manage your time.
So let’s look at 7 time management tips to help you become better at completing set daily tasks and time management.
#1 – Make a plan
Once you know what you want to accomplish, you need to break down those big goals into smaller ones. This helps you figure out exactly how long everything takes and how many hours per week you’ll need to dedicate to achieving success.
#2 – Prioritize
Now that you’ve broken down your goals into bite-sized pieces, it’s time to prioritize them. Which one should be your first priority? Which one can wait until later? Once you figure this out it will be easier to manage your tasks and accomplish your goals.
#4 – Be realistic
If you think you can complete all of your goals within a year, you might be setting yourself up for failure. Instead, set reasonable expectations for yourself. Then work backwards from there.
#5 – Don’t procrastinate
It’s tempting to put off doing something because we feel like we “don’t have enough time.” But when you delay a task, you actually end up spending more time than necessary. Procrastination is an easy way to waste valuable time.
#6 – Set up a routine
If you want to be more productive, you’ve got to set up a routine. But before you can do that, you need to decide when you’re going to wake up, eat breakfast, go to bed, etc.
#7 – Don’t multi-task
Multi-tasking may seem like an efficient way to get stuff done, but which one should you work on first? How can you make sure you focus on the most important thing right now? The answer: Stop multi-tasking!
You Need to Manage Time Well for Good Results
Time management systems are useful tools for organizing our lives. They help us prioritize what we’re doing and keep track of how much time each task takes. But finding the perfect one can take some trial and error.
There are many different types of time management systems out there, including task lists, calendar apps and productivity software. If you’re looking for something simple, try Evernote or Remember the Milk. But if you’re looking for something more robust, check out these options:
Trello is a project management app that allows you to create boards with lists of projects, assign due dates and add notes. It also integrates with Google Drive, Dropbox, Box, OneDrive and other cloud storage services.
Asana is another popular project management tool. It has a free version available as well as paid versions starting at $9.99 per month.
Basecamp is a web application that lets you collaborate on tasks and share documents in real time. It’s best used by teams who are working together on multiple projects.
Wunderlist is a cross platform mobile app that lets you create lists of things to do. Lists sync across devices so you can access them wherever you are. You can even share these with your friends.
Google Calendar is a great option for personal use. It works on any device and syncs automatically between computers, phones and tablets.
Calendly is a scheduling service that makes creating events quick and easy. There’s no signup required and you can choose whether to pay monthly or annually.
TaskPaper is a paperless task manager that helps you stay organized. It’s perfect for small businesses and freelances.
For Seven Days Straight, Keep Track of Your Time
If you want to improve anything in life, start by looking at what you’re already spending your time on. First, take stock of where you spend your time today. Next, record everything you spend your time on over the next seven days. Finally, break down each day into blocks of 30 minutes, an hour, or whatever works best for you. Once you’ve completed this exercise, you’ll be able to identify areas of improvement.
To help you figure out where you’ve been spending too much time, here are three ways to audit your time for seven days.
Journaling is a great way to reflect on your life and gain insights into yourself. It also allows you to see patterns in your behavior. For example, if you find that you spend a lot of time watching TV, you might want to cut back on that habit. Maybe you spend too much time gaming. Either way, journaling will give you insight into why you behave as you do.
2. Tracking apps
Apps like RescueTime and Toggl Track allow you to track your time across multiple devices. You can use them to see how long it takes you to read emails, surf the web, write code, etc. This type of tracking app helps you understand how you spend your time so you can make better decisions about how to allocate your time.
Self-reflection is another tool that can help you become aware of your habits. Ask yourself questions like “What am I good at? What am I bad at? Why do I procrastinate?” By answering these questions, you can learn more about yourself and adjust your behavior accordingly.
To Be Successful, You Need to Instill Keystone Habits Into Your Life
Charles Duhigg wrote a fascinating book called “The Power of Habit”. In his book, Duhigg explains that we all have habits that we repeat every day without even thinking about it. These habits are known as “keystone habits.” And they are the ones that determine whether we succeed or fail.
The keystone habit that determines success is the habit of persistence. Persistence means sticking with a goal until you achieve it. When you stick with a goal, you build momentum. Momentum is the force that propels you forward. And when you have momentum, you feel unstoppable.
The keystone habit that determines failure is the habit of perfectionism. Perfectionists set goals but never reach them because they get distracted along the way. So instead of setting a goal and then working toward it, they set a goal and work toward it constantly. But this approach doesn’t work either. Instead of building momentum, perfectionists lose their momentum and end up feeling frustrated and defeated.
A vision board is a powerful tool that can help you achieve any goal you desire. In fact, vision boards are one of the most effective tools for achieving personal development. They can help you:
• Create new habits
• Overcome obstacles
• Find inspiration
• Make positive changes.
Vision boards are made up of images that represent your future self. They show you who you want to be and what you want to accomplish.
You can make a vision board using magazines, newspapers, books or other printed materials. However, there’s an easier way to create a vision board. All you need is a posterboard and some pictures from magazines or online sources.
Here are some tips for creating a vision board:
1. Choose photos that inspire you.
2. Cut out the photos and paste them onto the posterboard.
3. Use quotes, affirmations and mantras to add meaning to the photos.
4. Add details to the photos. Include things like people, places, dates, times and titles.
5. Write down your goals in the margins.
6. Hang the posterboard somewhere where you will see it often.
7. Every morning before you start your day, look at your vision board and remind yourself why you created it.
8. After each week, take a few minutes to review your progress.
9. At the beginning of each month, go back through your vision board and decide if you’re still committed to your goals. If not, remove the photos and put them away.
10. Keep your vision board updated by adding more photos and changing old ones.
11. Don’t forget to celebrate your successes!
12. Finally, don’t give up on your dreams just because you’ve failed once or twice.
If you follow these steps, you’ll soon find yourself living the life of your dreams.
Set Email Response Times
Email is one of the most important tools we use every single day. And while it’s great that it lets us communicate quickly with people across the globe, too much emailing can actually slow down our productivity. In fact, according to research conducted by Microsoft, over half of employees say they spend up to three hours each week responding to emails.
And while many of us are aware of how distracting emails can be, few of us know what to do about it. So here’s some advice to help you make emails less overwhelming.
1. Set aside time to check your emails
If you’re like most people, you probably don’t want to turn off your emails during the day. Instead, set yourself a 15-minute window where you’ll check emails and respond accordingly.
2. Don’t let emails consume you
When you receive an email, ask yourself: Is this something I really need to act on immediately? Or am I being pulled away from my current task just because I received an email? If it doesn’t require action immediately then you don’t need to respond to it right away.
3. Respond promptly
If you have a response due within 24 hours, then it’s best to send it right away. This way, you won’t feel guilty when you get distracted and you will avoid forgetting to action it.
Eliminate Bad Habits
We spend way too much time doing things that don’t help us achieve our goals. We waste hours watching TV, scrolling through Facebook and drinking alcohol with friends. These activities aren’t productive and they take up most of our free time. If you want to become successful, eliminate bad habits like these. Here are 8 ways to get started.
1. Watch less TV.
2. Stop wasting time on social media.
3. Don’t play video games.
4. Cut down on alcohol consumption.
5. Exercise regularly.
6. Eat healthy food.
7. Get enough sleep.
8. Take breaks every hour.
You Need to Take Frequent Breaks During the Working Day
Some studies have found that people are most productive when they work for about 60 minutes straight followed by a short 10 – 15 minute break. In fact, researchers say that taking longer breaks makes us less efficient because we start getting mentally fatigued.
So if you’re looking to improve your productivity, try working in blocks followed by a short break. You’ll be surprised at how well you perform after such a long stretch of uninterrupted focus.
Get Up Early Every Morning and Meditate or Exercise
Meditation and exercise are some of the best ways to start your day off right. Both activities give you the opportunity to clear your mind and relax, while improving your overall health and well-being. They both make you feel good about yourself and boost your confidence.
When you do something like meditation or exercise early every morning, it gives you a sense of accomplishment because you know you did what you set out to do. It helps you develop discipline and self-control. These habits will help you throughout your entire day and even into the future.
Make a List of Things to do in the Evening for Tomorrow
Every night before you go to sleep, write down three things you want to accomplish the next day. It helps you stay focused and it makes sure you don’t forget anything important. When you know what needs to be done, you’ll naturally find yourself getting stuff done.
Set Time-Bound Goals
The idea behind setting goals is simple: You want something done. But what happens when you don’t set time limits and deadlines? What happens when you don’t know when you can celebrate your success? If you’re like most people, you probably find yourself falling into one of those situations often. Setting goals without knowing when you’ll achieve them seems counterintuitive, doesn’t it? Well, here’s why.
When you set a goal, you increase your sense of urgency to accomplish it. This gives you a reason to work harder and faster towards achieving your goal. And because you’ve increased your motivation level, you’ll likely feel more excited about reaching your goal. In fact, research shows that setting goals that include a deadline produces greater levels of excitement and energy than goals without deadlines. So if you want to make sure you reach your goal, you might consider setting a deadline.
Write Down Your Goals
Goals are powerful because they give us something to work toward. They help us achieve our dreams. And they keep us focused on what we want. But there is a difference between setting goals and actually achieving them. We must set goals in writing. In fact, we recommend writing three separate goals: one for each day, month and year. This way, you’ll always know where you stand and how far off track you’ve drifted.
Make sure your objectives are clear before starting any project. Don’t just imagine yourself doing something; write it down. If you’re trying to lose weight, write down your plan. Make sure you include specific dates and times. When you do, you’ll see results faster.
Make an Action Plan
Actions are the key to success. Without action, nothing happens. If you want something to happen, you must take some sort of action. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, save money, start a new hobby, or accomplish anything else, you must take specific actions to make those things happen. In fact, most people never achieve what they really want because they don’t follow up on their goals.
You’ve probably heard about “The 80/20 Rule.” Simply put, it says that 20% of your efforts produce 80% of your results. The same principle applies to time management. Most people spend too much time doing things that aren’t productive. Instead, focus on the activities that get you closer to your goals.
For example, if you want to lose weight, you need to eat less food. That means cutting back on junk food and eating healthier foods instead. To do this, you have to plan ahead. Write down everything you will eat during the next week so you won’t be tempted by fast-food restaurants. Then stick to your plan.
If you want to save money, you need to cut out unnecessary expenses. Start with the obvious ones such as cable TV and cell phone bills. Then look at other areas where you could save money. Do you use coupons? Are you paying for services you don’t need?
The bottom line is if you want to succeed in life, you must learn to set goals and then break them down into small, manageable tasks. Each task should include a clear objective, a deadline, and a reward for completing the task successfully. Once you’ve written out your list of tasks, cross off each item as you complete it, and continue working toward your goal every day.
Stick With It!
Goal setting is an important part of life management. But it’s not always easy to stick to our plans. We often find ourselves getting distracted, or we forget what we wanted to achieve. So how do we overcome those obstacles? Here are some tips to help you remember why you want to reach your goals in the first place, and how to keep yourself motivated throughout the journey.
#1: Be specific
When you’re trying to achieve something big, it helps to break down the task into smaller steps. If you want to lose weight, don’t just say “lose weight,” tell yourself exactly what you intend to do, like “eat less sugar,” “exercise every day,” and “drink water.” This makes it easier to measure your progress towards your goal, and gives you something concrete to work toward.
#2: Create reminders
If you’ve got a lot of things to do, write out a list of everything you need to accomplish. Then cross off each item once you complete it. You might even use a calendar app to mark off the days you’ve already done your tasks.
#3: Set attainable and practical goals
Setting specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and timely goals is one of the most effective ways to improve your productivity. For example, if you want to start exercising regularly, set yourself a goal like run three times per week. Or if you want to learn Spanish, aim to study five hours per week.
Goal-setters don’t just say they want something to happen; they set goals for themselves.
Unless you clearly state what you’re trying to achieve, how you will achieve it, when you want to achieve it and why it matters to you, your chances are greatly diminished.
Following these tips for goal setting will help you better manage your time, identify and eliminate any bad habits, and set realistic and achievable personal development objectives that will help you succeed and reap the benefits of time management. With proper balance and implementing effective time management skills you will find you have extra time in your day to accomplish and achieve more.
So, what plan of action will you take today?