This is something that has always bothered me. There are so many different ways to waste time and not even realise it. Take the start of the working day. Most of us, myself included, make our way into the kitchen and switch on the kettle. Our early morning rituals may include coffee and or a cigarette, a chat with colleagues, a quick bite.
The truth is we are delaying the inevitable. Not everybody starts working immediately they sit down at their desk, The Internet may be the best business tool available, it is also the biggest time waster available. You could start by reading the news or, checking your social media and personal emails. You are already eating into your employer’s time or if you are a business owner, your client’s time.
Even our work has differing levels of urgency and we do not always start with the most urgent but instead tackle something that could have been put aside or even ignored completely, because it is easier and less stressful. The crazy thing is, by putting something aside until it becomes urgent will result in stress.
If you want to get more done and stress less you are going to have to plan ahead. The best time is at the end of the week allowing you to go over what you did and did not do during the week. But you also need to prioritise tasks into urgent, not so urgent and not necessary.
Draw up your schedule for the following week making sure the urgent stuff gets priority.
Next step is going to be a bit more brutal – if you need your caffeine and nicotine before you start, get to the office earlier (or be prepared to stay late or take a shorter lunch hour). You can read your mail and catch up with Facebook on the bus or train or at lunch time. Use your phone or tablet to do so.
Use an app like Workflowy to list your daily or weekly schedule – print it out and tick off as you complete a task. The printouts will aid you when you come to plan the next week. You can get Workflowy on your PC, Phone or Tablet – why not on all 3.
You could go unplugged and use an old fashioned diary and write up your schedules or you could use Google Calendar, which you also access from all 3.
Another way and possibly the most brutal manner in which to manage your time is the Pomodoro Technique. You allocate a set amount of time to do something, once your time is up – that’s it – you are finished with that task (as in forever).
How you manage your time is up to you – and you will find that the most successful business men each have their own way to tackle work This article on The Huffington published The Top 7 Time Management Secrets of Billionaires and seriously if it works for the Donald Trumps and the Richard Bransons – it should work for you.