Mostly, time management is restricted strictly to the workplace, while your personal life sees you running from pillar to post, struggling to keep up as the clock ticks away..
Here’s how you can make better use of your time to balance your career/education with all those extra-curricular pursuits and special people that are such integral elements of leading “The Good Life!”
Whether it’s for professional duties or your personal endeavours, planning is CRUCIAL:
- Prioritise: Enumerate distinctly all that needs immediate attention and that which can be looked after at a later time. Determining the order, in which you would want all these matters to be dealt with, is highly recommended.
- Approach it Top-Down: In case of any plan, however short or long term it may be, first be clear about what your final goal/target is. You can now break the task down to its basics and divide it into smaller chores. Set time limits for each chore. Delegate if possible and essential!
- Remind: Use Post It notes, the soft-board, calendars hung on walls etc. to jot down deadlines and things you are likely to forget. Colour coding reminders based on the level of urgency or importance will help. (Buying some funky stationery for this purpose may add a spot of excitement to this otherwise commonplace activity!) And don’t think you don’t need reminders.. because you DO!.. No matter how elephantine or photographic your memory may be, the possibility of minor slip-ups that may potentially be major problems can never totally be ruled out.
- Space it out: Your schedule should keep you on your toes, but not to the extent that your existence turns robotic! Keep some free time on your hands. Unforeseen surprises are bound to spring up. Allow for emergencies. The important thing is to differentiate between ‘spending’ time and ‘wasting’ it.
- Document: Put your plan on paper. That way, it’s more convenient to refer to, follow and alter when required.
Procrastination is the chief detractor.. It will allure you into completely derailing your agenda! But don’t you fall for it, because that will only mean a waste of all the time and effort invested in planning. Stick to your plan as far as possible.
If you realise at some stage that you have way too much time to kill or none to even breathe, make the necessary changes. This may involve modifying the previous plan slightly or replacing it entirely.
If not, you are on the right track and will soon see results!
*Statutory Warning: You may have to now find a fresh excuse to avoid all those boring souls, family obligations etc., because you may not be able to quote the “I don’t have time!” line as often as you used to!