Have you ever wondered how some people always seem to manage their time better?
Do you ever look at your colleagues and ask yourself ‘How do they manage to get everything done in a day?’
I have put together a few pointers to help you stay focused throughout your working day. None of it is rocket science if I’m honest, but we all need reminding and pointing in the right direction at times. Some of these can also be used in your personal life too.
Take regular breaks
From your PC or whatever task/project it may be that you’re doing. Taking a break enables you to regain your thoughts and focus. Working through without a break can often lead to tension headaches, fatigue and loss of concentration. This can then lead to careless and avoidable mistakes being made. For me it works best when I work for an hour and then take 15-20 mins break. This in itself improves my time management quite considerably.
Set yourself realistic tasks
It is so important to set yourself achievable tasks for each day/week/month. I have a to-do list for the week that I write on a Sunday evening. I then break it down in to 3 tasks for each day. By doing it this way I am able to manage my time for efficiently, get more done and ‘eat that frog’ by tackling the hardest task first. The feeling I get at the end of the day is great as I have achieved everything I set myself. By the end of the week I’m smiling from ear to ear when I am able to tick off a load of tasks from my to-do list. The power of 3 is a great time management tool and helps keep you focused for the week.
DO NOT multitask
I have learnt over the years, that all you men out there have got it right (big sigh)! Multitasking in not good for you and is a big mistake when running a business. It may sound impressive to say that you can multitask (ladies, we know we’ve all said it), but I hate to tell you that doing one task at a time is much better for you and your productivity. SO, always complete one task at a time. Knowing that you’ve completed a task will give you greater satisfaction than having 2 or even 3 tasks on the go with none of them finished. All that is going to do is make you feel stressed and de-motivated.
Turn off notifications
We all love our mobile phones, but they are making us more and more inefficient with all the different notifications that go off every few minutes. Turn them off. It really is that simple. They are distracting and they steal your focus. 9 times out of 10 it won’t be important or need attending to straight away. By engaging in this distraction you are not only wasting valuable time, but you are also diluting your focus on the task in hand.
Check e-mail at certain times
Set yourself certain times of the day to check your e-mail e.g. 10am, 1pm and 4pm. This will stop your mind from wondering off to thinking about the e-mail you just read and how you should respond whilst you’re completing the task you set yourself. This goes back to multitasking again and is not good remember! Allocating certain times for e-mail will enable you to give your full attention to the message and reply accordingly, instead of sending a quick response that in fact hasn’t said everything you wanted it to, has typos and isn’t in the tone that you had intended.
Set yourself goals
Your goals can be weekly and monthly and even daily if you so wish. Your monthly goals will inevitably be bigger than your weekly ones, but each goal gives you something to aim for and once you’ve reached the first one it will give you the motivation to reach the second and so on. Make sure they are realistic. Maybe start with something small and then build them as time goes by. Remember your goals will be completely different to other peoples and that’s OK. The size of your goals will also differ and that’s OK too.
NO Social Media
DO NOT log in to your social media. this is one of the worst time zappers out there. Do not fall in to the trap of thinking that it will be OK to just take a peek first thing in the morning…….this is lethal. Save social media for your break times and lunch. This is a tough one I know as most of us or in fact all of us use social media for our business, but honestly it’s the biggest time waster and you’ll kick yourself for it later when you realise that you’ve not achieved everything you needed to.
AS I said in the beginning, none of this is rocket science but I do hope this has helped you in some way and reminded you of the importance of remaining focused and capitalising on your time management.
If you would like any more tips or help with your time management and efficiency then please get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.fayepa.co.uk and sign up to my newsletter which is full of tips and tricks. You can also get more information and tips over on my Facebook page www.facebook.com/fayepaservices