When on a goal chasing mission, how we manage our time is very important.
I received a message recently from a Goal Chaser by the name of Sharmaine from Bermuda who expressed that her biggest challenges at the moment are time management and stress and wanted some tips for dealing with both.
I will tackle the stress monster next week in greater detail, however, this week I will provide 5 time management tips, that ultimately reduce our stress.
As I'm sure we can all relate to the feeling of schedule overload and overwhelm at times, I thought it would be great to share Sharmaine’s excellent GCQ (Goal Chaser Query).
1. Pick a Productive Time For You
We’re all different and as such, our productivity peak times vary.
When do you feel the most energized? Are you a morning bird? A night owl? An Afternoon Ant?
For me, early mornings work best (like 5:00am early), therefore, if I have something huge to tackle that day, I ensure I get to it first thing in the morning, when my energy is highest. I save the mundane tasks for the afternoon as my energy begins to dwindle.
I find that when we work with our body’s natural schedule, our productivity increases and as a result, we get more done in the same amount of time.
2. To-Do List
As cliché as To-Do lists are - they work! Trust me when I tell you I live by them. I prefer to call them “Do Me” lists, however, as it makes it a little more fun.
Anything to get through a busy day, right?
It’s very easy to build a mental replica of Mount Everest and as demands increase, as does the stress. Getting the chance to write/type out everything that we have on our plates, gives us a much needed release from mind clutter.
I suggest writing out everything from mowing the lawn and feeding the cat, to calling that friend you've been meaning to speak to.
Dump it all out of your head and onto your list.
Take your To-Do list a step further and number it by priority, then start at the top.
As Goal Chasers, we are ambitious by nature and as a result, may have many things on the list that we thought we’d get a chance to tackle, that we didn't even look at. Do not fret superstar, pick up on it the next day and add to it if need be.
3. Refuse to Procrastinate
We are often to blame for our own stress when we wait until the last minute to complete a task. I can throw my hand up with guilt here.
In fact, I even began telling myself that I work best under pressure and needed the adrenaline to push forward.
I've since come to realize that I work well, not best, under pressure. This means that although I can do everything I need to and do it correctly when working on something last minute, I work even better when I give myself breathing room.
If you have something that you know has to be done, do not wait until the last minute please.
Now, this doesn't relate to small things like brushing your teeth. I'm talking about huge ticket items that if late or incomplete, can cause you greatly. Save yourself the stress and drama and do that huge ticket item during your peak productivity time prior to its due date.
4. Put the Important Stuff in Your Schedule
The action of putting something in your calendar solidifies its importance in your day and guarantees you will get to it.
Outlook, Google Calendar, iPhone App, Daily Planner, what you use isn't important as long as it works and you’re consistent with the tracker used.
I'm sure you can agree that saying you will get to something and even putting it on your To-Do list does not always guarantee completion. If you block out time in your day however, it gets real.
When you find which time keeping method works best for you, stick to it. I normally use Google Calendar, however, once I switched and added a business meeting to my regular cellphone calendar. Bad mistake. I missed my meeting, felt horrible and had the other person waiting. Ever since, I ensure I keep all meetings in one place.
5. Put your Foot Down
As mentioned a few weeks ago in a previous post, do not accept every offer and invitation that comes your way.
Be selective with your time and your “yes” responses. You have the right to say no when you’re not up to participate in something or your schedule does not allow much wiggle room.
Goal Chasers, I do hope the tips above help you. If you have a question or topic you’d love to see covered on the Goal Chasers : G.A.M.E. Changers blog just reply back to any of my weekly newsletters. I love hearing from you!
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Do you have any other time management tips that you'd like to share? Leave a comment on this post. And if you like it, be sure to share it with your family and friends!