7 Simple Strategies to Improve Your Time

Time management is an important life skill everyone needs. Improving how efficiently and effectively you use your time can help you to achieve your goals, better manage stress, and improve productivity. If you’re interested in learning how to make better use of your time, consider these 7 simple strategies:

1. Set Goals.

Do you have any goals? Do you write them down? Do you at least have an inkling of what you want to accomplish each day? Or do you just “wing it”? Having something specific to work towards each and every day, week, and month of the year helps provide direction and a clear focus on the tasks at hand (and what you do with your time). Writing goals and tasks down can also help you get more things done and become more productive.

2. Prioritize tasks.

It’s easy to get distracted and sidetracked on “unimportant” things, and never focus on and do what is important. When you prioritize tasks, you are deciding what is the BEST use of your time (by narrowing down the list). The next step? Create “To-Do” and “To Don’t” lists.

3. Create “To-Do” Lists.

Each day, create a list of tasks that need to be done in the order of priority or importance. All you need is a blank piece of paper or an App on your phone. “To-Do” lists help ensure important things are not forgotten. I also use categories / headings to better organize and manage tasks (e.g., grocery lists, chores around house, etc.).

4. Create “To-Don’t” Lists.

Do what now? Being busy is not the same as being productive. You may feel “busy,” but that doesn’t mean you’re working on “important” tasks. While “To-Do” and “To-Don’t” lists are similar, there’s one major exception — “To-Don’t” lists consist of the tasks you need (or want) to avoid, delegate, or stop doing. By identifying activities that “waste” your time, you can learn how to avoid getting distracted or sidetracked. 

5. Schedule Tasks.

Now that you know WHAT (goals / tasks) you need to do and WHY (priorities), the next step is to schedule WHEN (time) you are going to take action and do it. In other words, it’s time to create a roadmap for success. When you schedule (in advance) all of the “important” tasks and plan your activities accordingly, you’re more likely to take action and stay on track throughout the day, week, or month. Think about this old saying: “If you don’t schedule it, you won’t do it!”
 

6. Use a planning system.

Do you use a system to schedule tasks as well as deadlines and due dates? A blank piece of paper is a good start. A calendar may be better. A planner’s best. I prefer a “week-at-a-glance” planner, because I’m a visual person. Regardless, I recommend a system that you can: plan on paper. It is also important to only use one system to: write down all your “important” tasks and things that you need “to do.”

7. Take Action.

Becoming more productive is fueled by purpose and focused on action. Each of the above strategies can help you achieve your goals and to manage stress. Nothing happens without taking action, though. It’s also important to understand that: being productive means getting the most out of your time!

I like to work in 10-minute segments — to see how much I can get done in a short amount of time especially whenever I’m trying to get things done at home. When you limit the amount of time you spend on tasks, and also take focused action, it’s like playing a game (to see how much I can do).

By following these 7 Simple Strategies you can learn how to create a plan to improve your time management which will help you build some momentum you may need to achieve your goals, better manage your stress, and improve your productivity.

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