Become a Time Management Ninja
Time management is a major issue for most people in today’s busy world. People are seeking ways to manage ever-increasing to-do lists and feel “on top of things”. There is only so far you can go with working harder. To really get ahead of the curve, you need to work smarter.
In this guide, we’ve included our top tried-and-tested Time Management tips of all time, along with 5 new strategies we’ve started using over the past year.
1. Prioritise, Prioritise, Prioritise
If we could list only one tip for effective time management, it would be to continually prioritise your tasks. Accepting that no one ever completes their to-do list and checking in regularly with your tasklist priorities will help you stay on top of things.
2. Plan for the Un-Planned
When you are scheduling time for tasks, pencil in a little extra time than you think each task will take. This will help to allow for interruptions or unexpected hold-ups on a task.
3. Create and Maintain a "To-Do" List
When used and updated properly, a to-do list can be your best friend.
4. Take a Break
The more hectic your schedule, the more important it is to make time for breaks. If you don’t stop for a break, you’ll burn out quickly, which will affect your schedule more than a quick break now and then. Allow yourself that snack or cup of coffee!
5. Step Away from Your Inbox!
It’s good practice to only check your inbox once an hour, or if you can stretch to it, every 90 minutes. Doing this will limit distractions and give you a chance to cross off some existing items on your list before adding a new set.
6. Learn to Say "No"
It’s one little word, but saying “no” is one of the hardest skills to master. Our tendency is to agree to take on new tasks, even if our to-do list is full. You will be much more effective if you clear some of your current tasks before taking on new items.
7. Log Your Activities
You can learn more about where your time goes by keeping a log of your activities, even if it’s just for 1 week. This will help you become more efficient at forecasting time needed for new tasks.
8. Find Your Peak Productivity Zone
Everyone has a different time of day for top productivity. Find your most productive time and plan your high priority tasks for this period.
9. Stay Focused
It’s simple - minimise interruptions, maintain focus, maximise productivity!
10. Minimise Meetings
Attending unnecessary meetings is the enemy of good time management. If your meeting is essential, we suggest nominating 1 person to keep it running on-time.
Here, have 5 more....
In the past months, we’ve found these 5 tips invaluable for increasing productivity and decreasing stress:
11. Cram in More Zzzzzzs
It may seem like staying up late to cram in an extra hour of work is the key to getting more done. The truth is that a rested mind and body will be much more productive. If you sleep even 30 minutes longer per night, you’ll be sharper, make fewer mistakes, and power through your tasks with more energy the following day.
12. Consider Your Time as Currency
Time is valuable, so spend it wisely. The more you think of your time as you do money, the more carefully you’ll decide how you spend it. When you put a value on your time, in turn, others will begin to value your time too.
13. Choose Progress Over Perfection
This is a balancing act. We’re not suggesting that you cut corners, or ignore quality in your work. Choosing progress over perfection means not holding up the completion of a task or project to get the last 5% of exactly the way you want. Go live, press send, declare it done - when it works, get it working for you!
14. Ditch Multitasking
It’s a myth that multitasking makes you a more efficient worker, or helps you get more done. When you focus on 1 task at a time, giving it your full attention, you’ll complete it quickly and accurately.
15. Get the Most from Your First Task
There are 2 schools of thought on how to approach your first task of the day. Both are very effective. The first states that you should do the most important task of the day first, and the second says you should tackle the task you least want to work on first.
Whichever option you choose, the result is the same - you’ll get your day off to a really productive start and accomplish something beneficial in the first 30 minutes of starting your day.