How can you possibly create time? Time is a constant fixed function of the universe. No matter how you measure it, we all progress through time at the same pace. None of us have more time or less time than anyone else. We all have the same 168 hours per week.
So how is it that some people can get so much more done in the same amount of time? Do they work harder? Are they smarter? Do they have an army of helpers?
All of these things may be true, but they are beside the point. Stop focusing on what someone else is doing. Instead, turn your attention to how you can make the most of your own time management using the labor, your knowledge and skills, and the resources you have.
The simplest and most direct way to increase your results per hour is to invest time in planning. Create your own time management schedule.
Planning? That’s the big secret?
Well, yes. It’s not new and it’s not sexy but if you do it consistently it sure works.
Here’s one way to approach time management that seems to work well for a lot of people and works well for me.
Set aside an hour or two each week. Pick a time and place where you won’t be interrupted. Many people find that Sunday evening or afternoon is a good time because it’s quiet and not typically full of other scheduled events. Plus you can hit Monday morning with your planning fresh in your mind.
Gather whatever tools you need – calendars, day planners, computers, cell phones, and so on. Many people prefer to write on paper. Others like electronic tools. It doesn’t matter as long as you are consistently using your tools. Keep in mind you may need to include family calendars and the schedules of other business associates and team members.
Start by reviewing the things you MUST accomplish this week, and the appointments, meetings and engagements you already have on your schedule. List the other important tasks for the week and enter them into your schedule. Remember to include planning time, recreational time, and time with the important people in your life.
Most people find it helps to actually plan out a two-week block. The week immediately coming up gets laid out in detail. The 2nd week gets a rough outline. This actually saves time in next week’s planning session as much of the work is already done.
Invest 10-15 minutes daily to review your weekly schedule and your plans for the next day. It doesn’t matter whether you do it first thing in the morning, last thing at night, or sometime in-between. The important thing is to do it, and do it consistently.
The process is similar to the weekly planning, but on a smaller scale. Review the big appointments and then the tasks you want to accomplish. Get clarity and then get to work.
You will find that when you follow this simple method you will move through each workday and workweek with greater clarity and focus. The few hours you invest will actually yield several times your investment in productivity. With practice you will quickly find this little process will become a habit and when you don’t do it you will feel lost.
Start now to form the planning habit. The hours you save will be your own – and remember this:
“Once you have mastered time, you will understand how true it is that most people overestimate what they can accomplish in a year – and underestimate what they can achieve in a decade!” – Anthony Robbins (giving time management tips
When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.