Time is always slipping through our fingers as we try to cram 36 hours of things to do into a 24 hour period (sleep? who needs that, right?). If you take that first 10-15 minutes at the beginning of your day to really set out a proper to-do list, you will find your day do by so much smoother, and have time to put your feet up for more than 5 seconds.
- Prioritize! – Once you have this huge list of things that must be done – take a small step back and really think about what needs to be addressed first. And be harsh, be firm. Really think about the things on your list and keep it with you and stick to it!
- Say ‘No’ and Delegate – Life is full of interruptions, and some of them we create for ourselves. Learn to tell yourself ‘no’ too. Statistically, surfing the web is the number one time waster. Tell yourself ‘no’ and lessen your procrastination.
- Organize – use whatever method works best for you – a fancy computer program, smartphone or good ol’ pen and paper. File so you can find things in a way that makes sense to you.
- Break it Down – Steps – Now you have the main task; break it up into smaller, bite size pieces that can be easily accomplished toward the end goal of the task being completed. This also helps you check things off and give you a sense of accomplishment throughout the day.
- Set Aside the Time – Set aside the time needed to accomplish each task and each sub task. Set these as appointments like any other doctor appointment – and keep these appointments with yourself as you would any other.
- Multitask Wisely – Most tasks require your undivided attention. So utilize the ‘dead’ time like waiting at the doctor’s office – check your email. Watching TV? Pay some bills. In an important office? Do not check your text messages. Get the idea?
- Email Efficiently – Set aside time to check your inbox at specific times throughout the day, i.e. when you first get into the office, when you return from lunch and 30 minutes before you leave for the day. Let your co-workers know you do this so they don’t nag you. Organize your inbox to prioritize for you – have it sort by person, importance and follow up.
These tips can be implemented in all areas of your life. Make each moment count by being focused in the now. By using these tips you will find you are less stressed and more relaxed – you will even sleep better! Also consider these suggestions as well:
- Always take a lunch break. You’ll be more productive by coming back refreshed for the afternoon.
- Schedule exercise breaks to tone up your body and your mind.
- Determine a cut-off time for work. After that, put it completely out of your mind.
- Disconnect regularly. Turn off your cell phone and computer for a period every day.
- Set aside time to do nothing. You need to recharge your batteries now and then.
- Take a real vacation, during which you can unplug and break your habits.
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