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Time Management

Time management is vital in today’s society.  Everyone has the same amount of time each day.  People that get the most done manage their time.  When done properly there is enough time to accomplish the important task you have and take care of yourself.

Here are a few ideas to help you take control of your time.

Prioritize

Look at your list and decide what is most important.  A daunting list of 20 things becomes much more manageable when you realize you have 2 things that you absolutely must get done, 4 things that are important and 14 things that would be nice to get done.  Do the most important things first while your energy is good and your enthusiasm is high.  Save the running around and less important things for later in the day.

 Learn how you are using your time.

Sometimes low priority tasks take a large chunk of time.  Keep track of how you spend your day to learn where your time bandits are.  Use something handy and write down everything you do and when you started.  Don’t try to remember anything write it all down.  Once you know where your time is spent you can change what you want.  Keep this journal long term because you may need to refer to it for a while.

Decide where you need to make changes.

These changes are behavioral so take one step at a time.  Identify the biggest time waster and decide how to change it.  You may need to eliminate it or maybe put a time limit on it.  Decide what the best plan would be then make a goal to deal with it properly for one week.  Evaluate.  Did this free up more time for important tasks?  Did it take away stress from your life?  Do you like the difference this made?  If so, make this a permanent change.  Now go to the next time waster on your list and do the same.  The goal is not to eliminate everything you enjoy, but to free up time so you can get done what you need and still have time for the things you enjoy.

Use available tools

You can find everything from a Day-Timer to electronic devices you can carry with you that will sound alarms to remind of your next activity.  Find what works for you and use it.  If you are going to manage your time you need to plan how you will spend it in the future.

Establish routines

When you do things the same way over and over you are able to do them much faster.  Routines are especially important if you are dealing with children.  They just respond so much better when they are used to something.

Be organized

It may seem to take too much time to put things where they belong but it will take much, much more time to have to search for it when you need it again.  Organize everything from your computer to your closets.

Don’t waste time waiting

Everyone has to wait at some time.  If you have a full day this can be especially stressful.  Always have a task ready to work on in case you have to wait.  You can read a report, plan a strategy to delegate, create a shopping list or even relax and enjoy a good book or electronic game for a few minutes.

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