12 Tips to Manage Your Time Better
by Reggie Aquilina
There is no doubt that to truly succeed in life you need to learn how to properly manage your time.
One thing is certain: the most effective and successful people are experts in time management and they have the same number of hours in the day as you do. So time management has nothing to do with magically expanding time to suit your needs, but of using it effectively. It is a question of self-management rather than time-management.
Here are some tips on utilizing your time effectively:
1) Identify what is really important in your life and build your activities and goals around these big rocks. Having clear Core Values will avoid decision paralysis.
2) Identify what are your time wasters: how much time do you spend watching TV? How many activities do you do that can be delegated to others? Do you live in a cluttered environment that drains your energy? Which activities can you eliminate without any particularly important repercussions? How much time do you spend worrying over things that are not within your circle of influence?
3) Eliminate procrastination. Just stop it plain and simple. Identify why you are procrastinating and challenge your assumptions. Are you a perfectionist?- learn how to manage it. Do you create a huge To Do list that's impossible to go through? - cut out on the list. Do you feel overwhelmed with some large tasks? - chunk them down in smaller activities... and just DO it.
4) Use a planning system such as a To Do list everyday. Having a To Do list will help you to focus on the Big Rocks of life especially if you prioritize well.
5) Plan the hardest task and DO IT the first thing so that you get over the hardest task early on when you have high energy levels- in other words, as they say: eat your frog.
6) Learn to time activities correctly. I find that people who are not outstanding achievers generally lack the ability to time activities effectively. If you do not time activities effectively you will find yourself sliding off your schedule and missing out on important activities.
7) Focus on the task at hand. Do not start doing many things at the same time. Chunk big jobs into smaller ones, focus on the particular task, get it done and then move on. And please - do not give me the multi tasking excuse. Yes you can multi-task but you have to be focused on the task at hand.
8) Do not handle an activity twice when you can finish it in one sequence. E.g unless you are sure you can take the time to answer an email or a letter right away- do not open it.
9) Give a strict time frame to meetings or activities. Make sure you come out with clear actions from the meeting as otherwise it is just a waste of time.
10) Drop tasks that you do not need to do or those which are of no benefit. Learn to delegate effectively. Make sure that you delegate to people who have the knowledge and skills and delegate a task completely. Offer help if required but don't breath down people's necks.
11) Avoid being distracted by requests or telephones during activities which you need to focus on intensively. Give clear instructions that you are not to be disturbed unless the office is on fire.
12) Never leave the scene of a situation that requires a decision without taking a specific action. Taking an action right away will ensure you save time in the future. If you keep procrastinating on an action you need to take it will come back to you with a vengeance and you will waste more time trying to solve the repercussions.
Reggie Aquilina is the Founder of Insight Zone Academy. He is a Life Coach and works in the field of Adult Learning and Development. He is actively involved in providing e-learning resources related to Life Coaching and he is the creator of the Life Coaching Home Study Course: The 10 PowerKeys Program.
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