During busy times of the year, it feels like there are too few hours in a day. For some, it seems that every day the to-do list keeps growing and that no matter how much effort one puts into knocking items off the list, it simply refuses to shorten. There is a method to take some of the stress away from what may seem like endless tasks on your never ending to-do list.
The goal involves adjusting your time management; the method is a planned out follow through. Beverly D. Flaxington, a corporate consultant for over 17 years, adjunct professor at Suffolk University, and author of award winning books such as 30 Days to Understanding Other People, A Daily Approach to Improving Your Relationships, and Understanding Other People, identified tips for better time-management to increase your productivity:
- Pick your style. You know what has worked and what has not worked for you in the past. Settle on a method that works for you: whether you use your phone or a planner – pick a method to keep you on track daily and stick to it.
- Take your values into account. Of course all our to-dos are important; however, writing a simple “to-do” list and going line by line is not the optimal way. Everything that has to be done should be ranked based on what matters most right now.
- Pick your daily focus. Baby steps go a long way. Each day, pick a few things from your list that are the highest priority; only focus on those things that day. The hard part is keeping your focus from diverting to other things throughout the day.
- Break it down. Each to-do on the list has little to-do’s within themselves. Once you have selected your priorities for the day, take some time to break down the steps that are necessary for each task to be completed. This will help create a realistic image of how much time you need to complete the task.
- Get organized. When everything has a place, you save time by not having to look for things. Make a promise to yourself to put things back in their place when you are done using them.
- Value your time. Social media is fun and entertaining, but before you even realize it, it can eat away at chunks of your precious time. Before you even login to your favorite site or application, set a time limit for yourself for when you will put it away and get back to work.
If you really commit to becoming more productive, you will quickly see that you can get things done and have enough time for relaxation. All it takes is a little planning and dedication. With persistence and enough practice these six skills will become a habits in no time!