Six Time Management Dos and Don'ts
Manage your time effectively with these six dos and don'ts.
Time can have a funny way of running away from us. But these quick and easy dos and don'ts will help you make the most of your time.
DO: minimize interruptions and distractions. So, you have piles of work to get through, but keep getting interrupted. Before you know it, it's the end of the day and you're going nowhere fast. Then, it's time to take action. Remove the distractions you have control over. Switch off email alerts. Switch on voicemail. And block out time in your diary if you can. This way, people are less likely to disturb you.
DON’T: say "yes" to everything. When you're in demand, it can be tempting to say "yes" to every request. But this can have a negative impact on your work and your well-being. Sometimes, you just need to say "no." If you find that hard, try saying, "No, but…," and offer an alternative solution or deadline that works for you.
DO: break tasks down. When you're faced with a mountain of work, it can seem like the end is never in sight. But breaking larger tasks into smaller, more manageable, chunks means you'll make better progress and you'll feel like you're achieving more too.
DON'T: procrastinate. Getting unpleasant tasks out of the way might not be as bad as you think. So don't put them off. Instead, try to tackle them in short bursts of 20 minutes or so and give yourself a treat when each task is complete. Once they're done, you'll have the time to focus on more pleasant pursuits.
DO: delegate. If you take on too much, you run the risk of making mistakes, as well as increasing your stress levels. Look at the tasks you do regularly and identify which ones you can delegate. Asking others to step in will free you up to concentrate on the tasks that matter most.
DON'T: be disorganized. To be more efficient, you need to get organized. Keep your desk clear. Put your physical and digital files in order, and stay on top of that admin. Remember the three Ps. Plan, Prioritize and Prepare, using a To-Do List or by blocking time out in your diary.
So, what have we learned? Let's have a recap.
Minimize interruptions and distractions.
Don't say "yes" to everything.
Break large projects into manageable tasks.
Delegate when you need to.
And, finally, plan, prioritize and prepare.