How To Manage My Time Better
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Finding time in your life can be a struggle, especially as we grow older. With responsibilities coming up, more of an investment than ever before, there’s just not enough hours in the day.
That is why it is important to manage your time well. You don’t want to spend all your time doing things you feel obligated to do, but instead should be spending your time on activities that make you happy.
You will find yourself filling those empty spaces with something else – maybe even learning a new skill or taking advantage of some opportunities.
There are many ways to organize and manage your time. No matter what kind of person you are, whatever works for you will help you enjoy this less-than-perfect situation.
This article will talk about five easy ways to manage your time.
Work on your most important task
A few days ago, I was talking with my friend about how we manage our time in his apartment. He mentioned that he tries to focus on one of his projects — something he’s been working on for weeks or even months now — every day.
He says that when he does this, he feels more prepared when he picks another project to work on. Plus, it helps him feel accomplished, since he finished what he started.
This made me wonder: What if you just focused on doing an hour’s worth of work each day? Could you achieve the same goal?
I think so! And not only can you do this, but you should too. Why? Because research shows that people who use the principle Andy described suffer less stress than those who don’t.
So let’s look at his technique in detail and see whether you can apply it to improve your own time management.
Finish what you started
‘Finishing’ something means putting an end to it, or coming close to finishing it. For example, if you were working on writing your book before, then now is the time to do it.
You can make all the excuses in the world why you cannot write, but none of them matter when you decide that you are going to start writing. You will be more likely to actually do it if you simply get into a habit of writing every day.
And yes, this includes making yourself write for just a few minutes each day. It could be for one minute, five minutes, ten minutes – whatever length of time feels comfortable to you so that you eventually reach the allotted amount of time per day.
By establishing this new daily routine, you will also give yourself some time after you have written to review your work and fix any mistakes before moving onto the next topic.
Put down your phone and take breaks
‘Taking breaks’ is an oft-mentioned tip for how to manage your time better, but some may find it difficult to implement into their routine. What kind of break do you want? Do you need a short or long break?
A short break can be just for a few minutes, maybe to go to the next room or get something from the fridge. A longer break can be up to an hour if you are working on a project or doing some other activity that takes away your focus.
This doesn’t mean you have to leave the house during this break! You can simply walk somewhere for a minute or two, use the loo, pour a drink – anything to give yourself a moment to relax and reset.
If needed, ask someone who knows you well to watch your child or dog while you take a break. If there’s nothing like that around, consider asking family or friends to check in with you via a call or text at a reasonable time of day so they know you're able to spend time with them later.
Make plans and schedules
With all of this technology, we have less reason to stick to our phones than ever before. You can make arrangements with your friends, family, or colleagues via phone, chat, and/or texting so that you do not need to be in person for them!
This is great if you are usually the one making trips outside of work, or if you like to keep connected with people. It helps you reduce how much time you spend away from home which could potentially lead to more productivity and sleep later in the day.
You can also manage your schedule by doing things like staying up late because you will be awake during the night, leaving early to avoid any traffic, or working out at a different location or time of the week.
Commit to things
The first way to manage your time is by committing to things. You will have to learn how to say “no” to some commitments, but you must be able to recognize when it’s necessary.
By making decisions slowly, you give yourself more time to think about whether or not this commitment makes sense for you. You also have more time to prepare for the task ahead.
If you make too many commitments, you may become overwhelmed and distracted. You can’t do anything well if you don’t take breaks, so try to work in short intervals of time with frequent rest days.
Don’t feel like you need to do everything, however. Find your priorities and focus on those, as well as what matters most to you.
Learn to prioritize
As we mentioned before, time is something that everyone has but not everybody uses effectively. Some people have a lot of time because they are very productive and efficient with their schedule, while other people seem to have more time than themself due to poor time management.
The key difference between the two types of time users is how well they prioritize tasks in their daily life. Productive individuals understand that you cannot do anything important until you take some time off for it first. They know what needs to be done next and when!
Similarly, good time managers recognize that there is not much anyone can get done unless they put in the effort first by planning and organizing their day.
But how do you learn to prioritize? There are many strategies and tools to help you achieve this. The easiest way to start is to make a list of all the things you want to accomplish and then organize the order of importance or urgency.
By doing this, you will quickly see which items need to be tackled soon and which ones you can delay for later. Also, you should be aware of your priorities at different times of the day and week so you can adjust your routine accordingly.
Consistency is one of the most important things you can be in your life. When you are consistently spending time doing something, such as studying or working, it helps you to feel relaxed and focused.
When you are not constantly busy, you may feel nervous or stressed out. You could possibly even feel guilty for having breaks because you need to keep up with everything you have planned.
It’s hard to manage your time when you don’t put aside times to relax or to do things that matter to you. It’s also difficult to stay motivated when you don’t spend enough time on activities that you enjoy.
By being conscious about how much time you devote to each activity every day, you will find that you have extra time later in the week and/or month to dedicate to other pursuits.
You should try to make at least eight good quality minutes of work per hour you spend on school or job-related tasks. If you only focus on academic tasks, then aim to spend at least six good quality minutes per hour on those areas.
If you want to read or watch TV, aim to spend no more than two hours outside of business hours without an excuse.
The first way to manage your time is by setting goals. This can be for work, personal life, or both. For example, if you want to spend more time with your family, then you will need to make changes to how much time you have for work.
Your job may also have a staff that you can ask to help you achieve your goal. Or maybe there are other positions within your department that can cover some of your workload.
By having these conversations, you will find out what people in your workplace feel like they can contribute to you and your success. If nothing comes up, try asking about opportunities to learn more about your position so that you can take over one day a week!
If you’re looking to launch your career, see if anyone could use your skills and experience as an employee. It’s always good to keep your eyes open for opportunities to grow.