We all have those days when we wish we could just stop time so that we can get to everything on our long to-do list, but while that’s just not possible, it can be reorganized to make the best use of the time you do have.
Did you know that good time management skills can actually make you feel happier – and healthier? That’s because they not only reduce your stress levels, they also allow you to live a healthier lifestyle by sleeping better, eating a more nutritious diet, and allowing you to squeeze in regular exercise.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed by having too much to do and too little time, follow these tips to help you reorganize your time better.
Before attempting to manage your time better, evaluate how you are spending it now. Record all of your tasks and activities in a journal for three days and then look for areas of time that could be used more wisely.
For example, are you spending an hour, two, or even more on social network sites like Facebook? Perhaps you could use at least part of that time with friends and family in person, going for a walk, or participating in a fun activity you didn’t think you had time for.
Schedule your day before it begins
Planning your day first thing in the morning, or ideally, the night before, will give you a better idea of what you have to work with and help minimize any conflicts. It’s always best to prioritize by making the most important tasks first to get them out of the way so that the remainder of the day will seem that much easier. Set a time limit for each task so that it doesn’t begin to eat the time allotted for other activities – using a timer may help.
Just say no
Say no to nonessential tasks, and try not to let yourself lose focus by responding to emails and other messages that aren’t urgent. If necessary, schedule yourself some time to do this every few hours so that it doesn’t become a distraction and ultimately, lost time. Don’t take on more than you can handle, as it will just lead to increased stress and the inability to do your best.
By procrastinating, you’ll usually spend more time worrying about that undone task in the back of your mind rather than just getting it done. When you have the urge to put something off you don’t want to do, instigate the 10-minute rule. By telling yourself you’ll work on that dreaded task for just 10 minutes a day, once it’s started you may find it isn’t that bad and possibly even finish it – but even if you don’t, you will be 10 minutes closer.
If you have trouble being on time, try to strive to be early. If you plan to be on time, you’ll either be late or right on time. Those who try to target arriving early will mostly likely make it on time. If you struggle to meet deadlines, move that deadline up in your mind and try to meet it earlier than scheduled.
In addition to following these tips, remember that taking care of your health by eating right, getting lots of exercise and plenty of quality sleep will help to increase your energy level, improve your focus and ultimately increase efficiency so that you can complete more tasks in less time.
-The Alternative Daily