“So much to do, so little time to do it.”
“If I could just get an extra hour each day to catch up”
These are some of the common reactions I get when I ask people about time management. With family commitments and increasing pressure to do more in the workplace, it’s no surprise that people wish they had 30 hours each day to get everything done.
Here are some tips to help you get more done in less time:
Plan out your day: Make a list of goals that you want to accomplish each day so that you focus on doing the things that benefit you the most and avoid wasting time.
Schedule leisure time: You need time to unwind so schedule time each week for watching TV, surfing the web, playing video games or whatever you like to do to relax. If you like TV, a DVR (Digital Video Recorder) is a must as it allows you to record TV so you can watch shows when it’s convenient for you and you can fast forward through commercials.
Maximize wait time: Bring something to do with you while you’re waiting for appointments — this is more effective than reading People Magazine.
Eat right: If you don’t take good care of yourself, you won’t feel good and therefore you’ll be less productive.
Get enough sleep: Many people try to extend their days by sleeping less. If you’re tired, you’ll get less done as you’ll work slower. So you’re better off getting enough sleep so you’ll wake up energized.
Use a kitchen timer to stay on track: A small kitchen timer can help you stay on schedule. I find this more effective than saying “I’ll surf until 10PM then I’ll start writing my next article.” Since the timer goes off, it prevents me from having to watch the clock.
Use your commute time effectively: Use your time in the car to listen to audiobooks. If you take public transportation, read a book, do work on your laptop or listen to audiobooks or podcasts on your MP3 player.
Finally, don’t obsess over time management. Take things one step at a time and don’t get stressed. Some people spend so much time setting up elaborate time management systems that they spend more time planning than they do actually doing things. Small improvements every day can lead to big results over time.