“One cannot buy, rent or hire more time.
The supply of time is totally inelastic.
No matter how high the demand, the supply will not go up.
There is no price for it.
Time is totally perishable and cannot be stored.
Yesterday’s time is gone forever, and will never come back.
Time is always in short supply.
There is no substitute for time.
Everything requires time.
All work takes place in, and uses up time.
Yet most people take for granted this unique, irreplaceable and necessary resource.” – Peter Drucker
Goals are necessary to give you the right motivation. Goal-oriented people manage their time efficiently.
They always think ahead because they know that with proper planning they can get on the right track, finish tasks faster and achieve their goals.
When it comes to time management, you should be aware of your goals.
They are motivational tools or ideas that will provide you with the needed enthusiasm to begin a new task.
It is important that your goals are specific, measurable, attainable and realistic. This type of goal setting is often referred to Smart Goals.
A good goal should be based on your present conditions and resources; however, to achieve it you must be willing to increase your resources or change the conditions within a given time to attain the desired result.
A goal is also a projection, a way of directing your thoughts toward what you see as success.
It is a mindset, which is another important aspect of developing effective time management skills.
You should be aware of the power of your mind and of what you believe.
Utilizing the power of positive thinking can help you maintain a positive outlook while you are learning how to manage your time.
On your way to success, it is essential to set priorities and plan effectively.
Now let’s go over a few different types of goals that you can employ that will help you get more done in less time:
– Motivational Goals
These types of goals move you forward and inspire you to be good in whatever you do. Motivational goals are imaginary pictures of how you see yourself in the future.
For instance, would-be actors may picture themselves becoming rich or famous after paying their dues and working hard to get what you want.
Remember people are usually motivated by how they define the future, or by what they wish to accomplish in life.
While motivational goals aren’t necessarily the specific conditions or a particular time, they are more like scenarios that give you the encouragement to work hard and not to waste time achieving them.
– Projected Goals
These goals are the ones that you want to achieve within a given time period.
The result of your plan depends on your projected output making it possible to achieve what you want if you’ve created the right conditions to reach the end of the path.
Projection is a way of estimating the result of your plan like your projected income after a year from the start of your business, the projected result of your thesis or study, or your plans after five years of marriage.
These are similar to motivational goals however these goals are more about what you wish to achieve. Then creating conditions that will help you reach them.
Here are some tips that can help you set projected goals:
Professional Goal: What is my idea of success and how do I get there?
Educational Goal: What do I want to learn and why should I learn them? What are the things, information, and skills that I have to acquire in order to excel and become a productive citizen?
Family Goal: What is my concept of home and how do I define my family? Am I aware of my lineage and my goal for my family? How do I envision myself as part of my family, and my extended family? How do I want them to envision me?
Financial Goal: What are my financial expectations? Do I want to be rich or affluent?
Physical Goal: What do I want to become, physically speaking? What are my hobbies or preferred sports? Do I wish to compete in athletic events and how do I see myself doing it?
I know you may be thinking, “Why is personal goal setting so important in time management?”
From the time management perspective, your life is a series of big and small tasks and the time it takes to accomplish them.
Those choices direct your conscious and subconscious decisions towards success, building up your motivation to achieve personal and professional success.
Our goals should be based on our strengths and weaknesses. They should also have set objectives and be realistically achievable based on immediate needs.
As humans, we all have basic needs like food, shelter and material things that are necessary for survival.
These needs must be met in order to survive and move forward.
There are also emotional needs, which include social interactions, like the need for love and a sense of belonging.
On top of all of this, there is the need for “self-actualization” or fulfillment that fills us with a sense of well-being and happiness.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when setting goals:
– Your priorities in life and their order of importance.
– Your strengths and weaknesses in doing things or in executing actions.
– Your personality and the things that should be improved when it comes to meeting the demands of your plans.
– Your plans for other people, especially for your loved ones that will give you a sense of fulfillment and personal happiness.
– Your previous achievements that will pump-up more encouraging spirit in your next struggles.
Keep in mind that goals are guideposts, not necessarily the exact result of what you have in mind for your plans.
While sticking with your goals is great not adjusting to the changes in your life only leads to wasted time and frustration.
Another part of efficient time management is learning to avoid procrastination.
It’s a big hindrance when it comes to achieving your goals and it can also result in the loss of motivation as well as low self-esteem.
Developing good time management skills puts you in control of your time and your life, which makes it much easier to reach your goals.
It also helps when it comes to maintaining balance between your work, personal, and family lives.
The good news is time management skills are learnable, even if you are the most unorganized person on the planet.
Once you begin developing them, you will see improvements in all areas of your life by simply becoming aware of the causes of common personal time management problems.
Planning means preparing yourself with theories, ideas and concepts that will lead you when it comes to executing your task.
A carefully crafted plan doesn’t waste time and effort on unnecessary tasks.
Planning involves resource management and prioritizing the logical steps that need to be accomplished in order to achieve a goal.
This process also involves creativity and patience.
After you’ve set your goal and decided on a plan of action your next step would be to learn how to manage your time as you execute your plans.
This is where good time management skills come in to play.
When it comes to using time management strategies you should:
– Know your strengths and weaknesses.
– Try to veer away from complications.
– Avoid mental contradictions.
These three important aspects of time management will help you know how to move forward.
By looking at your strengths and weaknesses as an individual, you will know what to avoid (like procrastination, boredom, laziness, low self-esteem) and what to rely on (like creativity, flexibility, or cheerfulness.
Now let’s go over some tips that will help you plan effectively:
– Make things simple
When it comes to managing time effectively, it’s important to reduce complications as much as possible.
When creating your calendar of activities, don’t include unrelated or unnecessary tasks and try not to include too many variables in your plans.
To help with this task think about the resources you’ll need and the best way to accomplish your goals without too many steps or distractions.
Just focus on the fastest most effective way to execute your plan.
– Don’t be your own worst enemy
Mental conflicts, also called cognitive dissonance is the mental stress or discomfort experienced when a person holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values at the same time.
It is also caused when we are confronted with new information that conflicts with our existing beliefs.
Whenever someone is their worst enemy, they often get in the way of their own success by making excuses or giving in to delays that change their plans.
To avoid the negative effects of self-sabotage try to stay focused on the tasks at hand and alleviate mental stress by eliminating opposing thoughts.
In other words, remove anxiety from your mind.
Since time management is an important component of becoming successful you may need to take some time to revamp the daily schedule for maximum effectiveness.
Here are a few tips to help you get started:
Don’t make the mistake of jumping right into work.
Instead, take the time to brainstorm and develop a list of tasks. Create a list of things you need to accomplish to reach your objectives.
You might assume that you are done after brainstorming your daily tasks, but you are not. Next, you’ll want to create a to do list or a detailed schedule.
For this list to be effective, it’s important to prioritize your tasks according to importance.
It is a good idea to add daily, weekly and monthly tasks to your calendar to help keep yourself on track.
– Set Time Limits
After you create your to do list it’s important to assign time limits to complete each of your tasks.
Yes, this does apply pressure, but time limits can also serve as a source of motivation and without them, you will find it extremely difficult to reach your goal.
Almost everyone (if not everyone) is guilty of giving in or becoming victim to these time thieves one way or another.
In fact, most of these time thieves have become normal parts of people’s daily lives.
Who can resist watching their favorite shows on TV? If you really want to save time, turn off the tube.
I know it’s extremely difficult to control the urge; but if you start watching chances are you’ll get hooked and what was originally a decision to watch a one-hour show can easily turn into a 4-hour marathon.
Be strict when limiting the amount of time you spend watching.
The phone can actually be a time-saver if you know how to use it properly.
Instead of emailing someone, engaging in a phone call can allow you to get the answers right away. “Saying it” is definitely faster than “writing it.”
Of course, there are exceptions when email or other methods are better, like when a detailed list is needed.
You can prevent phone calls from stealing your time by telling the caller nicely that you have some urgent matters to attend to, and that you will try to call back soon.
Email is great and it can save you lots of time and money for postage compared to its counterpart snail mail.
Many of us rely on email to get our messages across faster, cheaper, and more conveniently.
However, there are certain downsides to using email as a means of communication.
Many people check their emails several times during the day, consequently getting in the way of their productivity.
They have become so addicted to email that they spend hours reading and replying, even sorting out their junk mail which can be a very time-consuming activity.
If you find yourself addicted to you inbox here are some great tips to make emails work for you instead of wasting your time.
– Check your emails a maximum of twice a day.
If you want to accomplish many tasks, limit your time in reading your emails.
Suitable times would be first thing in the morning (to take care of urgent matters) and a few minutes before you end your work (to catch up with last-minute concerns).
– Be brief
Answer your emails clearly and to the point. Don’t over complicate the explanation. Never reply to spam messages or to junk mails.
– Call instead
Several minutes spent in replying to emails can be shortened tremendously by just calling the person when it is acceptable.
Often you’ll get much faster response and you’ll end up saving time too.
– Reduce spam
Spam messages are very prevalent nowadays. Not only can they waste a lot of your time, but they can be very annoying as well.
To prevent spam, don’t post your email address online. It is also a good idea to set up a private email address for your most trusted friends and colleagues.
Of course, there are many other time thieves depending on your own individual circumstances.
The important thing is recognizing and avoiding them whenever possible. If you can learn to do that, you will see your productivity sharply increase.
As we have learned previously, there are many different aspects involved when it comes to utilizing your time management skills.
After you have taken the time to carefully lay out your plans, you have to work on their execution by developing an organized structure to efficiently manage time.
However, before you can get organized you first need to know where your time goes.
For instance if you work in an office, calculate how much time you spend there and at home.
Time estimates will give you the idea of your workflow, your efficiency and your time to relax and rest.
Here are a few more things you should take into consideration:
– Work Time
The regular workload for most people is 8 hours, more or less.
It’s important to maximize your time and energy during this productive period so that you can accomplish your daily tasks and still have time to enjoy life.
– Personal time
This is the time most of us sacrifice first but we need it to regroup and reflect on our goals and objectives. This can be a time to contemplate the days activities.
Even if you can only spare a few minutes of alone time to recharge your internal batteries it’s a very important part of your time management plan.
These are times spent talking with colleagues, friends, relatives, and loved ones about relationships, professional matters, personal things, or anything that concerns the speaker and the listener.
Usually we become unconscious of the time spent for this activity but we should be aware of the many things learned from interaction and socialization.
– Relaxation and Recreation
This is the time when you reward yourself after spending so many hours and days at work. This is a time to feel free and to enjoy the moments of life.
You can organize your time by creating a daily agenda and by checking your agenda at the end of each day to track down your schedule on a daily basis.
Keep an activity log with all your major and minor activities as well as your idle moments and tardiness.
Then analyze them to get rid of any time wasters that are holding you back.
This will also help you where your strengths and weakness are so that you can adjust your plan for maximum effectiveness.
As you continue on your time management journey you may find that you need more than a simple to do list or calendar to keep yourself on track.
Well you’re in luck because there are a wide range of free and paid tools that can help you kick your time management plan up to the next level, so be for we close this final lesson I want to share a few of the most popular ones available.
– Check out these time management tools:
This tool runs with your Windows or Mac to watch and record how long you spend on each application or activity as you go. It also generates an analysis of how you’re using your time to help you plan more effectively for the next week.
This very smart application allows you to assign abbreviations to lengthy information. For instance, you can customize the New ActiveWord Wizard so that every time you type “myzip,” the app will automatically change it to your selected zip code.
This cloud-based productivity tool lets you customize an easy-to-revise virtual mind map. MindMeister is best for visual people because it’s focused on goals rather than lists and orders. You can also collaborate with others on a project even via mobile.
This simple program is for those who want to keep track of how long they have been working on a project. You can try to beat your time on given tasks to improve efficiency. Plus Toggl saves your entire project and is accessible on Mac, PC, and mobile phones.
This ultimate note taker, which is part of Microsoft Office, allows you to keep organized virtual folders to file away notes. OneNote is particularly useful when you’re collecting a massive amount of research. Its drag and drop function makes it very easy to stay organized.
Evernote is a place to record and save all your thoughts, notes, photos whatever you uploading the cloud so that you can get to all of it from your computer, smartphone, tablet, or anywhere you have an Internet connection and a browser.
When it comes to mastering the art of time management, it’s really all about changing how you approach your daily schedule.
Like cracking down on your TV time or checking your email too much.
Taking advantage of tools designed to save you time like the ones I mentioned above are an excellent way to hone your skills and they can also help you reach your goals and objectives faster than you ever thought possible.