Most people who live in urban areas notice that everything around them seems to go on without waiting for anyone or anything. Time is flying by and you don't even notice when yet another day has passed.
So how do you manage your time in a way that will be beneficial for you? Use these seven time management tips to increase your efficiency and productivity.
1. Set Your Goals
Every hardworking person has some kind of goal in mind that they are actively working towards. If you don't have a clear aim in mind, you cannot possibly know why you are doing what you are doing.
An aim is also very important to keep you motivated. It is very easy to get discouraged if you are putting a lot of effort and see no instantaneous results. Having an aim, however, will increase your chance to stay dedicated to your job and find inspiration even in the hardest of times.
Once you decide what your goals and aims are, make sure to keep them in front of your eyes in some way. Maybe this will mean that you print out a huge poster and hang it by your desk at work or maybe you will only have to place a sticky note on your refrigerator to look at every morning.
2. Create a Schedule
Having a schedule is directly related to productivity. Creating a plan for a day, a week, or even a month will increase your confidence in your own future and will help you have your priorities straight.
There is also the flipside of having a plan which is that you may get too obsessed with it and react badly if something goes not according to it. This is why you must always be able to adapt to new circumstances. Don't be afraid to change your plan at some point if the situation requires it.
3. Detect Time Loss
One of the most important factors that determine the success of your time management strategy is detecting where you are losing time. You absolutely must know when you are losing your precious time and what you can do to change this.
When you will be creating your schedule, you will most likely notice in which periods you spend your time for nothing and, eventually, lose your precious minutes. Make sure that you add some valuable tasks to these hours and change the situation.
4. Set Shorter Deadlines
Longer deadlines lead to procrastination. This is the sad truth which not everyone realizes. When you set a longer deadline for yourself, you usually think that you are doing a good thing because this will mean that you have more time to do what you want. In reality, you are letting yourself procrastinate and then make yourself stressed when you have little to no time left until the deadline.
What you must do is take smaller goals and set shorter deadlines for them. This way, you will be able to complete everything in time and motivate yourself to keep moving on. Success always prompts people to try and do more. Use this technique to boost your confidence and increase your energy levels.
5. Learn To Say "No"
You don't need to agree to everything someone asks you to do! You do not exist solely to please them or to help others all the time. You must accept the fact that helping others and letting yourself down at the same time is not a good thing, especially for your mental and physical health.
It is time to learn to say "no". Imagine that a friend is asking you (for the eighth time already) to look after their kid while they go out with friends. But you are busy in that exact time or have plans to go out yourself. What you must do is politely decline their plea and be honest: you have plans. Don't worry about what they may think. You have the full right to have a life, and if they think you are their personal servant, then bad news for them because you really aren't.
6. Get Some Rest
Getting some rest leads to being more productive. What you must understand is that your health must always come first. As pointed out in the previous tip, it is important to take care of yourself, because nobody else will.
Having a good night's sleep is the first step to being more productive in the day to come. If you weren't able to get enough hours (the norm is eight to ten hours for adults), then make sure that you nap during the day. You can do this even while you are getting to work by bus or other public transport.
7. Stop Being Lazy
This may seem like something that directly challenges the previous tip, but it's actually not. Being lazy is an art… and a curse. If it is already a habit of yours, then this is the time to finally get rid of it.
Don't think that you are the only one suffering from laziness though - many people do. But not everyone realizes it is a serious problem, while those who do, often blame themselves for being lazy and feel terrible or even depressed about it.
Instead of trying to get rid of laziness all at once, take baby steps one at a time. This means that you must select those hours when you are lazy and lose time, and then try to decrease the by five, ten, and then fifteen minutes. It may take you weeks or even months to get rid of this bad habit entirely, but all your effort will ultimately be worth it.
In conclusion, managing your time is not as complicated as it seems. Anyone can become more productive as long as they genuinely want to. Follow the advice in this article and change your life for the better!