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4.9 (Rating) – Do you ever feel like you just go through your days by barely accomplishing anything at all? If so, then you have come to the right place my friend. Let me assure you, you are absolutely not alone in feeling like this. In fact, so many of us experience this little feeling that we decided to put together this awesome and Complete Guide on How to Manage Your Time Properly. We are here to tell you that if you have a need to change this way of life, then you will. By doing things through good planning, management, and execution, you can complete all of your daily tasks in an orderly fashion.
Really, the one and most important thing that will set you apart from the rest of the crowd, is proper time management. Follow along with this complete guide on how to manage your time properly, and you will feel and be more accomplished in no time. Alright, let’s get started with the basics.
1. Time Management Basics
What Is Time Management?
So what exactly is time management in all of this and why is it important? Time management in a nutshell is the process of planning, managing, and executing small daily tasks by utilizing smart ways of time management for maximum productivity.
Even though time management sounds like it is super easy and a waste of time (ohhhh no it isn’t) , once you are able to actually master effective and efficient time management, you will be unstoppable. The process of time management involves you auditing the everyday tasks that you do, as well as prioritizing and blocking off time that is needed to accomplish these tasks and prevent any unnecessary distractions.
Why is Time Management Important?
Well, because we all get the same amount of time in a day to do things. That magic number is 24 hours a day. So, if we all get the same 24 hours a day of available time, then why is it that only a few individuals out of every 1,000 people are able to use the full 24 hours a day properly?
The answer to that question is right smack in the middle of efficient time management.
The world’s high achievers know that full attention must be given to the most expensive of currencies that we know of today. What is that currency I am talking about you ask? Well, that currency is called time. The currency of time is the most precious currency out there. Just think about it, what is one thing in this life, or this world that you are unable to make more of, unable to mine, unable to create? Time is the answer. So, if we only have such a small allotment of time that we have been gifted with in this life, why do we squander it away on things that don’t matter? There really isn’t a good answer for that. But luckily, there is something that we can do about that.
What these high achievers do on a daily basis is that they prioritize their everyday tasks; they do everything possible in their power to avoid getting distracted. They are very good at multi-tasking, they utilize time blocking tools (calendars, reminders etc.) and all sorts of different tools under their belt to get the most out of their 24 hour period.
How Do You Manage Time Effectively?
So now that we know why time management is so important, what can we do to improve it? What techniques and tools can you use to manage your time better? Is it even possible to manage your time better if you presently cannot even afford to lose a few minutes of your day to stop, audit and plan out your day?
The answer is yes; even you can find a way to start better managing your time. Below, we will show you 6 core time management strategies that will help boost your daily output tenfold. In fact, once you are done with the time management audit, plan and have had a chance to execute the plan effectively, you might even end up with some free time for yourself.
Go ahead and take a look at the below 6 time management strategies that will immediately go into work to start making your life more efficient and easier.
Time Management Strategies for Success in Life
When it comes to effective time management, the main focus should be on the results (goals) that we are trying to achieve, not the activities themselves.
Important TIP #1. Being busy is not the same as being successful and efficient. Always strive to lead a well planned out life.
Perform a Time Audit on Yourself
What we are trying to do with a self-audit, is to figure out all of the tasks that you do on a daily basis. This is the planning stage of your time management improvement journey. Planning is the absolute most important task when it comes to effective time management. However, it does also require for you to sit down, and make a complete list of where all of your time goes daily.
There are a lot of different ways that this can be done. There are free as well as paid applications out there (like Toggl), that can help you track every little task that you perform in a day. You can download complete reports, you can breakdown all of the different activities, and then evaluate them. Complete Guide on How to Manage Your Time Properly contd.
What this step does for you, is that it helps you find out what the most and least time-consuming activities are that you deal with on a daily basis. This initial list will eventually help you to prioritize your day to day tasks efficiently.
2. Prioritize All of Your Daily Tasks Wisely
When looking at how to prioritize your everyday tasks, look at the below categories for some guidance.
Try to fit your daily tasks under these categories:
Vital & Super Urgent Tasks
If you had a list of 50 “the sky is falling, I absolutely need to do these now” tasks, chances are that only a couple of them are actual showstoppers. These couple of tasks then should get labelled with the “vital and super urgent tasks” stamp.
Vital but Not So Urgent
These are the types of tasks that are indeed still critical, important and can have somewhat significant consequences on your business, but even these tasks aren’t as important. In fact, these tasks can be performed after the other more important daily tasks.
Really Important & Urgent Tasks
These are the tasks that are also very important to your business. They may not be on the critical level to the point where they would harm you or your business as the “Vital & Super Urgent Tasks” might, but they are second in line in terms of importance.
Important and Not So Urgent Tasks
These particular tasks do not carry a heavy weight of importance and are also not the most urgent of items to execute. Nevertheless, they still have a place on your to-do list and typically do require at least some of your attention, even though not immediate.
Go ahead and go through your daily routine, rank the tasks in order according to the below list of importance and start executing:
- Vital & Super Urgent Tasks
- Vital but Not So Urgent
- Really Important & Urgent Tasks
- Important and Not So Urgent Tasks
Important TIP #2. Always start with the most difficult task first. The reason behind this is that focusing on the most difficult tasks in the very beginning allows the follow-up tasks to not be so bad. It makes the whole experience more enjoyable and satisfying. According to various psychological studies within, we as human beings prefer our experiences to improve over time.
3. All About Goal Setting
Make Sure to Set Up Micro Goals for Yourself
When it comes to goal setting, setting up micro goals allows you to knock out big chunks of a project or task by breaking it down into smaller micro-goals. These micro goals are broken down into tasks that can be completed in hourly or daily mini milestones. Most people out there are unable to complete tasks on time because they tend to start working on their projects at the last moment. The reason behind this is the lack of planning. If you put forth a good plan with a system that breaks down tasks according to importance and by utilizing micro-goals, you will always come out on top.
Once again, always make sure to setup micro goals that can give you a better understanding of the big picture right from the beginning. If you put more work into the planning of your days and projects, everything becomes that much easier.
Here is an example of how micro goals work. Let’s say that you need to submit a presentation in two days’ time. What you should do, is to go ahead and start creating small micro goals in a way that allows you to complete a part of your presentation today and the other part tomorrow. This way, you are not stuck having to create your presentation in the last minute.
To take things even further, make sure to break down your daily tasks for this presentation into even smaller chunks. The larger daily task should turn into hourly tasks for that day.
Know Your Goals Inside and Out – Complete Guide on How to Manage Your Time Properly
“I’ll go ahead and complete a few of the presentation slides today”. This example will not help you to manage your time effectively. What you should do instead is to craft a goal that says something along these lines “I’ll go ahead and complete the first eight slides of the presentation today. The whole process should not take me longer than an hour”. By defining clear expectations on the number of slides you will be working on as well as providing a time frame, this helps you set things into gear and provide structure to the goal.
You should always know at the beginning of a project where you are trying to end. Once you know where to begin and how to end, you can fill in the blanks and break tasks down into micro goals for absolute efficiency. Please continue reading the rest of this complete guide on how to manage your time properly for more tips and strategies.
4. Time & Distraction Blocking
Use Time Blocking & Maintain A Time Management Worksheet
Planning is very important in goal setting and time management in order to help you avoid distractions and repetitions. Time blocking is a great strategy for planning out your goals and increasing your production levels by 150%
Time blocking is a process of dedicating a calculated amount of time (whether in hours or minutes) to performing just a single task. This process allows for you to block off your mind from other tasks in order to be able to focus on what’s at hand.
Time blocking is always helpful when you have a large number of tasks to work on. It allows your mind to not get easily distracted by other pending tasks and activities. This process can help you devote 100% of your attention to a certain action or activity for a planned amount of time.
The easiest way of time blocking is to maintain a simple time management work sheet, or by utilizing a smartphone time management app.
Always Block Distractions & Time Wasters
When it comes to time management, it is very important to block out the noise. And noise can come in many different forms. Some common distractions and time wasters are as follows; phone calls, messenger chats, emails, other tasks, tickets etc. Distractions and noise are the absolute the greatest threats to one’s time management strategy.
Make sure to always keep a lid on self-induced distractions. You really do not need to check your email every 5 minutes, you do not need to check out news every second, do not answer every single phone call that comes your way, do not answer to every chat. Only focus on what’s important. Sure, some of those phone calls, emails and chats might be important, so yes do answer them. But the rest, avoid them like the plague.
Important TIP #3. One thing that we recommend you do, is to avoid touching your phone while you are working on your daily tasks. Currently, phones provide the largest distraction to our time management strategy. Put your phone down, put it in a drawer or in your bag and try not to look at it during your day.
Apps for Managing Your Time Effectively
Even though the Internet and the Digital World that we live in today tend to play the biggest roles in wasting our time, there are countless tools that we can find which allow us to properly manage our time. Below, you will find a list of the best time management tools and applications currently available that can help you manage your time effectively:
- Toggl: this is a simple mobile app that is perfect for tracking time.
- Workflow: another very effective application to help your time management planning by utilizing a simple drag-and-drop interface.
- RescueTime: this is probably one of the best time-tracking apps out there. It automatically records how and where you spend your time on a daily basis. It works on your computer, tablet and smart phone (zero manual entry is required to make this work).
5. Conclusion – Complete Guide on How to Manage Your Time Properly
Time management is not entirely all about managing your time. In the end, it is all about managing ourselves and how we utilize our free time. We can learn a lot about a person from watching how they manage their time. Furthermore, goal setting plays a huge part in how we manage out available time. If you are serious about wanting to succeed, then you need to get your time management in order.
I hope that you have enjoyed this “Complete Guide on How to Manage Your Time Properly“.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave us a comment. Otherwise, you can always send us a quick note via our Contact Us page.