With today’s hectic 24/7 lifestyle, we are busier than we’ve ever been. We talk to fast, and we’re always in a rush. We start things that we never finish and are constantly nagged by the thought that we’ve forgotten to do something. We’ve filled our lives with time-saving devices in the hopes that we will free up our time, only to fill it again with more work, activities, and tasks. All of this is adding to our stress and affecting our health. Here are several tips to help you improve your time management.
Create a Time Diary
Take the week and plot out what you do every day. Be honest with your entries. You need to be sure to include everything from the time you spend in the car, to how long you take to eat, to how much time you spend watching T.V. if you don’t know what you are currently doing with your time, you will have no way to make intelligent decisions about how to use your time more effectively.
Learn to Say No
If someone asks you to do something that you really don’t have time to do, politely, but firmly tell them no, and don’t feel guilty about it. One reason why we feel like we are busy all the time is that we don’t know how to set personal boundaries effectively. Part of declining to do things is so you have more time to focus on your goals and how to say No.
Create a Time-Based, To-Do List
When you are creating your to-do list, you need to include exactly how much time you expect to spend on each task. When you add how much time it should take to complete a task, it can help you prioritize how to go about accomplishing those tasks. When you prioritize tasks, you tend to focus on those that you can quickly achieve.
Don’t let the progress you make, no matter how small, go unrewarded. It doesn’t have to be a large reward, but it is important to acknowledge your progress and enjoy your success. Use your time diary to make decisions about how you want to organize and use your time better. As you make progress with prioritizing and saying no, let yourself enjoy your progress.
Learning how to manage your time better will help you reduce the stress in your life. It will also help you find the time to work toward achieving your goals and living the life you’ve always wanted.