No matter who you are or where you are in your life, one thing is for sure: you have the same 24 hours in a day and the same 7 days in a week as everyone else. How you use your given time is what distinguishes you. Here are a few tips to get you started with managing your time and getting the most out of the 24 hours ahead of you.
Start by clearing away any unnecessary papers from your desk so you have a workspace that will allow you to focus on the task at hand. Additionally, clean up your work email and even your task list. This will often make you able to concentrate solely on what needs to get done.
At the beginning of each day, write out the tasks you have to accomplish and prioritize them by importance. Make sure you are only adding the necessary tasks so you don’t overwhelm yourself.
3: Identify Time Wasters
While you are planning out the day, get rid of the things on your list that are unnecessary. It can often seem overwhelming if your to-do list goes on for pages and pages. By deleting the things that are not completely necessary, then you can maximize your time and get done the most important tasks.
If you have easier tasks that do not need to be accomplished by you, delegate the task to someone else. Then you will simply need to look over the completed project to ensure it was done correctly, and move on with your own tasks.
5: Say No
It often happens that other people, especially in business, will ask you to accomplish a task for them. You may tell them “Yes” because you know the task will not be hard or time-consuming for you to get done. When you accept every task that comes your way, these small tasks can add up quickly. Be wary of your own to-do list and tell people “No” when necessary.
6: Break Down Large Tasks
Sometimes you have a task that is so large that it seems impossible to accomplish, which means you often end up procrastinating getting it done. The first step to completing this task is to break it down into smaller steps that are easier to achieve. By working on smaller tasks, you will feel more accomplished and you will be able to cross the big task off your to-do list before you know it.
7: Know Your Most Productive Times
Countless studies have shown that people hit their highest productivity levels during the late morning. While this may not be the case for everyone, find the time that you tend to be the most productive. Then plan your day so that your largest tasks can be accomplished during this period. By the afternoon, when you are starting to slump from that delicious lunch, you will still be able to accomplish the smaller tasks you need to get done.
8: Allow Yourself Breaks
It’s a good idea to allow yourself breaks throughout the day. Especially if you work at a desk, walking around to get your blood flowing can be good for your health and your brain. Light snacks throughout the day will also help give your brain food to keep going.
9: Know Your Limits
Some days you don’t accomplish everything you were hoping to get done, and that is completely fine. As long as you gave it your all, then you cannot be mad at the outcomes; after all, we are all humans not machines.
10: Plan Again
Rather than letting the feeling of defeat sink in, remind yourself that tomorrow is a new day with another 24 hours. You can end the day by writing a new to-do list for the following day so you can hit the ground running in the morning.