Have you ever wondered, although every person on this planet gets the same 24 hours of time each day, how some people manage to get so much more done while you can barely finish your essential duties?
How is it that your friend manages to study a part-time degree, spend ample time with family, earn a side income, AND volunteer at the local animal shelter, all while working a full-time job?
Do they have some secret genie that you don’t, who gives them all this extra time? Would you trust me if I told you that you have the power to be your own genie?
Yes, It is certainly possible to be your own genie. All you need are a few simple techniques to help you live life to the fullest while increasing efficiency and productivity while reducing burnout. And this post will provide you with just that.
1. Begin by observing how you spend your time.
For starters, analyze how you spend your time each day. Make a quick note of how much time you spend at work, on your commute, and other activities. It is an excellent way to gain perspective on what you’re working with at the moment.
You’ll be shocked at how much time you squander each day just because you didn’t plan ahead of time or because you were busy browsing social media. I can pretty much guarantee you of this based on my personal observation. When I looked at my phone usage data, I realized just how much time I was killing each day, aimlessly swiping through Instagram, Facebook, and other applications. Knowing this helped me stop wasting so much time on such unproductive activities.
If it’s not your phone, you may be whiling away time watching television, taking extra-long breaks, or even worrying!! If you know the answer, you know where your time is going.
That is why making a record of your time use is beneficial. Accounting for your time on paper will help you understand how you can better manage your time.
2. Make a prioritized to-do list.
Preparing a to-do list will help you phenomenally. Keep it very simple. Make a note of everything you need to get done that day. Having such a list handy will save you time since you won’t have to waste any time thinking about what to do next.
Do not overwhelm yourself by adding too many tasks. Instead, keep it as realistic and achievable as possible. Because setting unreasonable targets and failing to meet them will lead to disappointment and frustration.
Prioritize the tasks listing them. Determine which of these is the most important and time-sensitive. Prioritizing your duties helps you complete important stuff first, ensuring that you never miss a deadline or a family dinner again.
Also, to help you stay motivated, reward yourself for completing your to-do list each day. Put a penny in a jar for every task you complete. Or any other incentive that keeps you motivated!
If making a list every day is too much for you, consider doing it on weekends. Make sure to use the calendar to mark any important meetings, tasks, and occasions! If even weekly planning exhausts you, make do with a mental checklist.
A blank sheet of paper or even the back of a notebook will suffice. It does not need to be anything super fancy. However, if you are someone, who enjoys having colorful lists, you will definitely love these seven sheets of Daily Planner Printables, which you can download below for absolutely free.
3. Do not try to multitask.
Never put too many things on your plate at once. It will undoubtedly be difficult for you to finish and digest!
Do not attempt to do more than one thing at the same time. Keep your focus on one task, and only move on to the next after it is complete. Trying to multitask is not only stressful, but it is also inefficient. You end up not performing each task to your full potential.
Multitasking is the ability to screw everything up simultaneously.Jeremy Clarkson.
Follow the order of your priorities list, completing the most pressing responsibilities first. You will realize that you automatically have more time to spare for the less important activities.
4. Make sure you get enough sleep.
I believe I have mentioned this in a number of my posts since it is without a doubt one of the most fundamental points.
You will feel less energetic, less productive, irritated, and cranky if you do not get a good night’s sleep. It impacts your work performance, relationships, and overall wellbeing.
A well-rested body is always more productive than one that is sleep-deprived. And more productivity translates to better time efficiency.
When it’s time to go to bed, don’t obsess over thinking about your work or studies. Once you’ve made a to-do list (physical or mental), go to sleep without any further mental disturbance. Keep your cell phones far away from you! Not only will you be tempted to scroll endlessly on social media, but studies reveal that the radiation from your phones may be quite dangerous and can impact your sleep quality as well!
5. Limit the amount of time you spend on each task.
Establish limits on the amount of time you spend on each task. For instance, Suppose you have a sales report to prepare or a college essay to write. Determine what is a reasonable amount of time is needed to finish it. Say, about 2 hours? Set this as your goal and strive to complete it within the defined timeframe.
Because you have a deadline, you will find that you work faster and more efficiently, and finishing it inside that time frame will make it all the more exciting.
6. Cap your time on Social Media.
Aside from work and academics, restrict the amount of time you spend on your phone or watching television. While little of this is necessary, spending too much time on your phone will take away time that could be spent with your family or studying. (If you’re anything like me, it is at this point that you’ve realized how distracting and time-consuming social media can be. 😉)
7. Make the most of your waiting time.
We spend a substantial amount of time waiting! Waiting in queues, waiting for the bus, and also; waiting to arrive at your destination when commuting. Use this spare time to get small tasks done.
Respond to emails, read that book you’ve been meaning to read but haven’t had the time, and catch up with friends on call, or maybe even catch on some pending sleep with a nap. It may not be much, but you will have some time to accomplish less important stuff.
Another simple tip is to keep all of your stuff in an organized manner. That way, you won’t waste time looking for things when you need them. Such as your car keys or that file you need for the office. Even your clothes!
8. Get out of bed a little earlier.
Early mornings are said to be the most productive times. It is the time of day when all of nature is busy getting ready for the day’s adventures. The birds are chirping, the hens are clucking, and the flowers are blooming. Our biological clocks are programmed to function in this manner. It’s splendid to be in sync with nature since it knows what’s best. (BENEFITS OF WAKING UP EARLY)
Try waking up an hour earlier than you usually do, and you will find yourself to be energetic, productive, and with a LOT MORE TIME on hand. Kickstart your day with some exercise and stretches, and you will be all set for a great day ahead.
If you get started early, you are bound to get more things done. That too efficiently! It’s really that simple. (The early bird catches the worm 😉)
Several studies show that people who get up early are generally happier! So, why not try getting up an hour earlier tomorrow to catch that gorgeous sunrise? Set your alarm now!
P.S. If waking up early in the morning does not bring out the best in you, figure out the golden hours when YOU are most productive. Find out what works best for you and stick to it! However, you must receive enough sleep. There is no wiggle room there.
9. Do not chase perfection.
Voltaire was absolutely right when he stated Perfect is the enemy of good.
Don’t get too wrapped up in the pursuit of perfection. If you do, you will never complete a task. It is okay to strive for your work to be good, but wanting it to be flawless makes it much harder to accomplish. You will be afraid to begin doing something in the first place. That’s because you are worried about the lack of perfection in the eventual outcome.
I used to be guilty of this, but not anymore. I put off starting this blog for eight years. Yes, for eight years! I wanted everything to be perfect! The perfect theme, niche, blog name!
Believe me when I say this. Perfection is an illusion. It is also an excuse we give ourselves to postpone dealing with our greatest insecurities. I am glad that I eventually did start this blog. Even if it isn’t flawless, I learn new things every day. This blog wouldn’t really exist if I had continued my obsession with perfection. My biggest regret now is that I didn’t start sooner because I was afraid of not being good enough!
Work done without complete perfection is still better than work not done at all. So, do your tasks with dedication but do not chase perfection!
10. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself.
Finally, this is one thing that I need you to ingrain into your head. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Yes, getting more done in less time is much more fulfilling. However, it should not come at the expense of your mental health or wellbeing.
Just because someone is getting more things done does not imply that they have it all sorted. Do not compare your life to that of others. Use the above strategies to manage your time better. But don’t push yourself to exceed your limits at the expense of your health.
Manage your time well, meditate daily, take little breaks to de-stress, and work efficiently. Don’t get caught in a rat race with time.
That’s all for now, people. Please let me know in the comments how these strategies helped you better manage your time!