Manage Your Time Before it Manages You – Tips for Better Time Management

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“He who every morning plans the transactions for that day and follows that plan carries a thread that will guide him through the labyrinth of the most busy life.” −Victor Hugo

Technology is changing the way we do business, extending working hours around the clock. However, we still have the same 24 hours we’ve always had. I’m sure you’ve all said or at least heard someone say they wish there was more time in the day to get things done. With the evolving business scene, it is more important than ever to improve your time management skills, allowing you to balance meeting client demands with maintaining a healthy, happy personal life.

Facing large projects and short deadlines, Interprose is not immune to the changing business world and around-the-clock demands. It’s a challenge our team tackles on a daily basis. However, with good time management discipline, it’s also one we’ve been able to overcome. Here are some of our best time management tips to help you stay on top of your work, while still maintaining a good work-life balance:

  1. Know your priorities.

It is easy to become a reactor to life, living in the moment, responding to whatever comes up and giving it your attention until something else pops up. This allows for no future planning…which is a recipe for craziness, always running from one thing to the next, eating away at your time. By identifying your priorities, decision-making will become simpler when many tasks or opportunities arise at the same time. Don’t know where to start? Check out Back to Basics: Setting Priorities, an article that shares three different approaches to setting priorities.

  1. Get organized.

Do you want to be optimistic, goal-oriented, and relaxed? Well, according to an article in the Huffington Post, these are just a few characteristics of organized people. And the good news is that according to the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO), organization can absolutely be learned. One way to get started as an organizer is by making a to-do list − I’m a sucker for crossing things off my to-do list. Take a few minutes in the morning to write down all the tasks you want or need to accomplish that day, helping you to focus instead of becoming distracted by the bombardment of daily emails and calls.

  1. Give yourself some wiggle room.

Meeting deadlines can be stressful, especially if some of the elements of the project are outside of your control. Things come up and people misjudge how long a project will take. Account for these things as you build a schedule of deadlines for a project. If your absolute deadline is Friday, tell your team you need it by Wednesday (or sooner). Building in the wiggle room up front will help you meet your deadlines with more ease. This philosophy can also work for solo projects. Shoot for getting things done early to avoid last-minute pressure and free up your time for other things.

  1. Reward yourself.

Make time for yourself, unplug from work, and really spend some time relaxing. According to an article on Psychology Today, taking some alone time gives your brain a chance to reboot, improves concentration, increases productivity, helps you discover your own voice, gives you a chance to think deeply, and helps you problem solve more effectively. So, whether it’s going out to dinner with friends, or binge-watching Netflix, or fitting in that daily jog, make sure you take some time to unwind.

Time management is so helpful to productivity and you too can have good time management! So, as work and life piles on remember these four tips: know your priorities, get organized, give yourself some wiggle room, and reward yourself. Now go out there and take control of your day!