Time management has been something I have always struggled with. So many hours of my life have been wasted on social media websites when there was work that should have been done. So many hours of being lazy that could have been spent working in my garden to yield a better crop. Getting sidetracked is something of a norm for me, but I can’t let that get in the way of me getting things done.
It used to be really, really hard for me to get anything done. I was hardly ever on task, and I had to scramble to meet deadlines and maintain order in my life. It took me a long time to figure out that what I was doing wasn’t working, but once I did, I knew things had to change.
Managing your time is important because there are things in life that have to get done, and the sooner you realize that, the sooner you can be back in control of your life. I’m someone who likes to be organized, so why not be organized with how I spend my times as well?
Time management is something people—young and old—struggle with on a daily basis. And when things don’t get done on time, we get pretty stressed out. Stressing is not healthy my friends. I don’t know about you but stress makes me hungry, tired, and totally out of it. So in order to avoid stress, work on your time management skills!
I wanted to share my top ten tips for managing your time today because, friends, life is short and it goes by fast. So in order to make the most of it, here are some tips to keep yourself on track.
1. Create a plan for each day
If you make a list for yourself of everything you need to do that day, it’s easier to realize that there are things that need to be done and you can also map out when you want to get what done.
2. Prioritize your tasks
Some tasks have more importance than others. Maybe pulling the weeds in your garden is a little more important to you than doing a load of laundry. Or vice versa. Determine which tasks need to get done first, or are more important, and make sure that those are completed first.
3. Stay focused on the task at hand
This is probably one of the most important points I wanted to make. If I have 10 different tabs open on my browser, how the heck am I ever going to get anything done. If I’m washing the walls, I’m not going to vacuum the floors until the walls are washed. Staying focused is crucial to managing your time well. If you’re not focused, odds are you won’t get much done.
4. Don’t overload your schedule
Just because there are many things that need to get done does NOT mean that you should try to accomplish all of those things in one day. Not every task takes the same amount of time to complete, so plan accordingly for each that needs to get done.
5. Create habits
If you know that the floor needs to be swept everyday or that those emails need to be answered, get into the habit of doing those things everyday and maybe even at a certain time during the day. I try to stay off my email until 5pm to ensure that emails don’t distract me from everything else I need to do.
6. Put a clock in front of you
Clocks scare me. I kid you not. They remind me of how little time I have and how fast it goes by, which motivates me to spend my time wisely. If I’ve got a clock at eye level, it’s a lot easier to get things done in a timely manner.
7. Exercise and eat healthy.
If you’re eating healthy, getting proper sleep, and living a healthy lifestyle, it’s easier for your mind to focus and help you manage your time.
8. Block out distractions
Set your phone to silent, stay off of social media, close the door, and it’s easy to focus. All those distractions keep us from concentrating and focusing on what really needs to get done. I can tell you from experience that without distractions, I’ve been able to do so much more in less time.
9. Envision your results
Washing the dishes, for example, is not something most people look forward to, so if you think about how nice your kitchen will look with all the dirty dishes no longer stacked on the counter and in the sink, that can give you the much-needed motivation to complete the task. Remind yourself why you’re doing this.
10. Let enjoyment be the goal
Enjoy what you’re doing. Don’t get worked up that you have to bathe three muddy little boys! Instead, be glad that you’re doing something useful and helpful. Don’t just focus on getting things done—focus on enjoying it.
Nowadays, I hear the term YOLO everywhere—you only live once. People take this to mean that you only live once so party like there’s no tomorrow and pretend it’s okay that you have to get your kids to school on time, but you’re hungover. Well, guess what? You only live once, so spend your time wisely, and live a life that you can be proud of.