Time is a precious commodity bestowed to all of us, equally. Understanding the importance of time management and using it effectively, can significantly contribute to your personal and professional growth. Although there’s only so much you can do each day, it is possible that by using the right techniques, you could do much more in lesser amount of time.
Benjamin Franklin once posed this query, “Do you love life? Then do not squander your time, for that’s the stuff life is made of.” It has been said that the quality of your life is generally linked with the manner in which you make use of your time. Time is an invaluable resource; once wasted away, it’s gone forever. Value the time you have at your disposal; use time wisely to make every moment count.
Here are four proven tips to improve your time management skills :
Tip #1 Plan
Chart out a plan and then follow the plan by take appropriate action. Plan schedules for each day, week or month; jot these down as reminders. Use time to your advantage; set your priorities straight and refrain from instinctively spending your time on anything that grabs your attention. Make effective use of your time by doggedly sticking to the plan and doing things meaningful to you.
Plan not to lose sight of what’s important to you and what you wish to achieve in your job and in your career. Plan to do things that matter most in your personal life and pursue activities you enjoy. Doing so, could significantly decrease your stress level and increase your productivity .
Tip #2 Stay Focused
Focus accelerates concentration and improves performance- – – be it in your personal or professional life. Have a clear vision of your priorities; without a clear vision, you could drift into doing unimportant things. Once you give a particular activity or job your focused attention, you can considerably reduce the amount of time you’d need to spend on it. Focusing on the essentials, builds organizational skills, accelerates attention to relevant details and takes conscious control of your time.
Stay focused in achieving your goals; take smaller steps in the right direction. Attaining these, could energize you to achieve more. Staying focused can enable you to do the right things in the right amount of time. It is a sure fire way to improve on your time management skills.
Tip #3 Maintain Balance
To determine the degree of balance you are experiencing in life, it would be most helpful to estimate the amount of time you spend on each of your pursuits. This could serve you as a timely eye-opener. For example, if you habitually tend to work longer hours at your job, you could be depriving yourself of family-time- – -which could eventually have serious repercussions on your personal life. It would therefore be in your best interest to maintain a balanced approach in all your activities and pursuits.
Since individual circumstances differ, the best way to maintain a sense of balance in your life would be to it be true to your ‘inner’ self. This would require a strong dose of self-discipline. Self-discipline entails sacrificing momentary pleasure for what matters most in life. Self-discipline not only can helps you maintain a sense of balance and make your life happier, but it can also be a useful tool in improving your time management skills.
Tip # 4 Make conscious choices
Analyze the activities you pursue each day. Figure out how you would evaluate each of the activities before spending your time on it. Weigh the pros and cons thoroughly and then make a conscious choice. Be discerning in the choices you make. Choose to do things you want to and not merely because you have to – – – simply to please somebody. Think carefully before making a choice; you do not want to be robbed off your finest resource- – -TIME!
Make a conscious choice to work smarter and not necessarily longer. Once you narrow down areas important to you, you are less likely to spend time on not-so-important things. With the right perspective and repeated practice, you could master the skills of effective time management. Determine to make productive use of your time; your life will soon be changed for the better.
Lest you forget
Life can be short; you don’t want to make an exit with regrets. Spend your time fruitfully in the pursuit of knowledge, in mastering a particular skill or in helping someone in need. Time well spent is a life well lived.
H. Jackson Brown, an American author, known for his inspirational books has this to say, “Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo de Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.”