It’s common knowledge that each day has only twenty-four hours with our entire lives are built around it. Sometimes we wished that we had more hours in a day to get more things done. While you can’t create time, the next best thing you can do is to make the best use of it.

Clock, time management

Managing your time right?

So much work, so little time. Within a day we have twenty-four hours to work with and we’re pretty much occupied two-thirds of it

What is Time Management?

Time management is what I am referring to and it is the process of applying methods to consciously control the duration spent doing specific tasks all within a set time boundary. Its goal is to efficiently use the limited hours we have in a day for accomplishing tasks in projects.

Why should I manage my time?

Arms folded, why should I manage time

The following are some reasons why time management is more important than you think. It can also be applied to routines that are out of the workplace too.

Time is limited — So much work, so little time. Within a day we have twenty-four hours to work with and we’re pretty much occupied two-thirds of it. By managing it, you can accomplish relevant tasks on the dot and have enough time to go for that yoga class of yours.

Accomplish more with less effort — When you know what to do from the get-go, you can efficiently complete your tasks quickly and with less effort. The reasoning behind this is because the minutes you allocated to complete the task has been set and you’re not going to be redundant by doing non-related tasks. When you’re in ‘the zone’, you can efficiently get your job done without getting distracted.

Become a better decision maker — Because time management requires yourself to analyze and decide how you’re going to plan your tasks throughout the day, you realize that you’ll become better and more confident at deciding how much time you’ll need to complete certain tasks.

Free time is not optional — As much as you’d like to complete your work as soon as possible, some tasks are just way to big to finish up within a day. Pulling consistent long hours on it can make you lose confidence and make your goal seem further away. This is why you need to pace yourself by creating pockets of free time throughout your day. You’ll be able to give yourself that much needed breather to refresh yourself before you go on to completing that daunting task.

Develop self-discipline —  Time management requires the creation of a schedule and sticking to it. To be able to follow a schedule requires discipline and determination. It’s very easy to bail on something but harder to keep to it.

How do I manage my time?

Writing on notebook, how to manage time

You may be asking yourself on what you need to do exactly. Here are some suggestions that you can follow to keep your time managed.

Prioritize your tasks for the dayBefore your day begins, list down all your tasks both important and less critical. Highlight the important tasks and move those items above the list. Focus on the tasks that need to be completed for that day while pushing the less important items for the next day. If you complete your tasks earlier than expected, feel free to work on one of the smaller tasks from the following day.

Assign weights to the tasksNow with the list prepared, we can now move on to assigning weights to the tasks. By weights I mean the amount of time you think you’ll need to complete specific tasks. Make sure the time allocated is reasonable and realistic while giving yourself some minor buffers for short breathers.

Allocate time for R&RBurnout is something that is very common in the workplace. Proper recreational time is important to prevent it from happening. Within your day, set certain pockets of time that you can use to recharge yourself. Having a proper lunch without any work distractions can help you maintain your confidence to plow through the rest of the day.

Create a scheduleBy now you have your list with the assigned weights to create your schedule. Having a schedule creates a sort of pseudo end goal that we can look forward by the end of the day. Equip yourself with a small planner or notebook to draw a simple schedule that you can refer to throughout the day. For the slightly more techie readers, Google Keep is a great mobile app for creating tasks which you can tick off when you’ve done and completed it.

Stick to it — It goes without saying, if you’ve already come this far in preparing your scheduled routine you need to inject some (maybe a lot of) self-discipline in making sure you can accomplish it. In a way keeping to your schedule is also a task but one that is the predecessor in helping you complete the others efficiently.

Freedom of time

Man standing on rocks, freedom of time

Ultimately, your time is governed by your own actions and decisions. Whatever you decide to do with it just make sure you’re doing it with wholeheartedness and with few regrets. While you can probably reference this guide as a way to maximize your productivity, make sure you spend some time doing the things you love.