Time management tips address your baseline needs – like accomplishing the top tasks on your to do list before you are overwhelmed by a swiftly advancing deadline. Sometimes, though, to do lists become so overwhelming that you avoid them. Here are some ways you can keep your lists working for you, not against you, by using techniques employed by top executives.
How Savvy Efficiency Experts Work at Top Capacity Using Lists
You can revolutionize your effectiveness by taking just five minutes at the beginning and end of your day. Try these 3 tips when setting up your schedule:
- Plan by creating a To Do List.
- Prioritize and consolidate.
- Review your To Do List(s).
It’s most helpful to use each tip daily, and the next 3 points provide helpful perspective:
Finding the time to plan is like scanning the landscape from up in the air.
You need to get a comprehensive overview , note any barriers, and establish your route. Fundamentally, you’re deciding how you will travel through your day.
This is the most important part of your process. Without daily planning, you’ll be setting out on your day without a compass. Sooner or later, you could get lost, and fall farther behind as you work to regain your bearings!
When you navigate your day, it’s essential to know where you’re starting, where you want to end up, and the major intersections and turning points along the way.
Of course, even with an excellent plan, you may need to make changes as the day unfolds. The gift of making a plan is that it helps you clarify your priorities. When you map out your priorities, you can quickly decide on alternate routes when unforeseen events arise. You needn’t go into a lot of detail about those routes, but it’s important (and reassuring) to know that they’re there. You’ll transition with more ease on short notice.
Prioritizing and then consolidating your tasks.
Prioritizing and then consolidating your tasks provides huge dividends in your day, yet only requires a few minutes here and there. As you scan your To Do List, highlight the 3 tasks that you absolutely want to accomplish, no matter what.
Whenever you have tasks that can easily be put together, be sure to connect them. This not only saves time, but helps you maintain your focus, as well. For example, you might group errands that involve stops close to one another, putting all of your computer-related tasks in the same time slot, etc.
Taking time to review at the end of the day gives you a much-needed boost!
Create a special time slot to tweak your To Do List for the next day. When you are relatively relaxed and focused, adjust your priorities, reflect on any lessons learned, and then let go of it all as you head to bed.
Letting go is a wonderful benefit of utilizing this process. As your reach the end of your day, you can release any worries that you might be carrying. Your action steps are organized on your list, and you will start addressing them in the morning. Your sleep will be more restful, and you’ll have more energy as the next day begins!
So, what can you do right now to safeguard more time and to use these 3 essential ways to make planning work for you?© Copyright 2011 Paula Eder, Ph.D.