Practical Ways to Improve Your Time Management Skills
Time management is one of the biggest struggles people endure nowadays. This is because there is so much to be done both in our personal and work lives with very little time available. Whether you are a startup leader, executive, or any other person in authority, you have to juggle between the needs of your team and your personal demands.
To help you scale through all this, you need to know how to manage your time. The following skills come in handy during such times.
Making a Schedule
This is the simplest and most basic time management skill. Organizing your days well in advance doesn’t help you to avoid surprises, but it gives you an idea of what to expect each day. If you are not sure where to begin in making your schedule, start by spending a week or two as you track every task that you do on a day-to-day basis.
This is important because it helps you identify recurring tasks and patterns which you can then incorporate into your plan.
Scheduling tasks alone while commendable, cannot guarantee you successful time management. Prioritizing simply means weighing your tasks and ranking them on the basis of the impact they have on your business or personal life. If it is a project you are executing, divide it into stages and start with the components that are most important to you.
You can rank them based on the returns you can potentially derive from them or the consequences you are likely to suffer as a result of not accomplishing the task.
This is one of the most difficult disciplines to follow because boundaries between work and family or one task and the other may not be as clear as you may want them to be. For instance, when it is family time, you may find yourself working away on your laptop to complete a task or work assignment.
The reason why you need to set boundaries is because no one can read your mind. You have to tell the people around you that you are switching off to another task or activity.
Learning to Handle Distractions
It doesn’t matter how hard you try, at one point or the other, you will be distracted. For you to be productive, you need to learn how to handle and accept distractions. If you can, include them in your schedule.
Do not forget to allocate time to unwind each day. This is important because productivity tends to be hampered by continuous work schedules without rest.