Happy New Year to all the Kingdoms far and wide! I don’t make resolutions anymore because I was sick of feeling like a failure on New Years Eve. Instead I am trying to live each day the best I can. One of the ways I am going to try to make my days better is by improving my time management. I have been trying this out all week and have had a really successful week. Here goes:
1. Block out chunks in your calendar to accomplish specific tasks. I am keeping this really flexible because sometimes emergencies come up. I usually start the day by blocking my calendar and I leave little places open for catch up and other things. I have loved this and it has helped me to stay on task. It gives me an idea of my priorities. This process allows my manager to always see what I am working on and give me feedback on what priorities I need to change.
2. Do the task that you really don’t want to do for 10 minutes. Plan it out and make yourself do it. You might get going on it and like it (or not as I have found with certain things). Either way you will make progress and that is the whole point.
3. Take breaks. I know this sounds like a time waster, but your brain and your body need it. Say “Hi” to a co-worker, take a short walk, something that will get you away from what you are doing. You will find you are refreshed and energized when you get back to your tasks.
4. Avoid Time Wasting websites. They actually exist and if you google them, you will find some awesome stuff. But when you are trying to manage your time, avoid them.
5. Automate. If you do something over and over again, figure out a way to automate it. This shows initiative and impresses your bosses when you tell them how much time you are saving each day.
6. Reward yourself. When you accomplish a project or some task that you really didn’t want to do, give yourself a reward. This will help you to stay focused on getting your task done, knowing that you have something to look forward to when you finish. Mine has been a video game that I get to play when I get home. I have been playing all week and am starting to get sick of it so I need to find a new reward.
7. Block out distractions. This is a big one for me, especially when I am in the office. I sit near a chatty group which has allowed me to learn about sports and current events. While this is great, I was having a rough time meeting my personal level of accomplishments. I have added headphones and found I can concentrate longer and be more productive.
I would love to hear what you do to better plan your time and be more productive.
Have a magical day!