Managing your time well is not about being perfect. It’s about being smart. Its about being mindful of your habits and routines – the tasks you spend your time on; how much time you allocate to each task; and the best time for you to perform each task.
Because we are all essentially creatures of habit. For example, think of your morning routine and the steps you follow from the time you get up until the time you leave for work – shower, breakfast, dressing, grooming etc. Chances are you follow pretty much the same routine every single day.
But when was the last time you stopped and asked yourself – ‘is this the best use of my time? or ‘is this the best way?’
Smart time management starts with simply asking yourself these questions.
However, like any bad habit, poor time management habits can be hard to break. Just like starting a diet, stopping smoking or commencing an exercise program, recognising and then adjusting your habits takes work.
There are 5 steps you can take today to start managing your time smarter:
- Self Aware: understand your values (where do you want to spend your time) and your time management challenges (your key pain points). This gives you a baseline.
- Map: map a typical week to see where you spend your time to help you understand your habits. Once you know in detail where you spend your time, you can identify exactly what you need to change.
- Analyse: take your map and segment each task in to one of 4 time segments – Musts (tasks you have to do); Wants (tasks you want to do); Delegates (tasks you can get someone else to do) and Rejects (tasks you can do smarter or not at all).
- Reframe: from your map and time analysis identify exactly what you are going to start doing differently.
- Take Control: establish an Action Plan to ensure you implement and then sustain your new time management habits.
The prize? Hours of reclaimed time a month.
Want more time management advice? Check out Kate’s blogs or purchase your copy of ‘Me Time‘ to start getting your time back!