Have you ever thought “I don’t have time for this”? Or even “Not enough time to look after everything”?
Everyday we meet people and perform activities that need a big chunk of our day’s time. It seems that there are always people and tasks that ask for out attention and time, regardless of their nature or mutual relationship.
As a result, it eventually comes down to pondering over where the time went.
In fact, no matter our social status or material possessions, we all have 24 hours per day. So, how can someone effectively use the same amount of hours to further progress in life?
“Time = life; therefore, waste your time and waste of your life, or master your time and master your life.”
- Alan Lakein
In fact, you would need to follow specific but very simple strategies that will in turn help get more done in a given day. You will be able to complete more tasks, spend mote time with your loved ones and of course, get closer to achieving your goals in life.
Let’s see the 4 simple tips that will help you use your time more efficiently:
4 Simple Tips That Will Help You Use Your Time Better
1. Focus on tracking your time
Do you feel you spend a lot of time on chores or social activities? Do you feel you don’t devote enough time towards your goals?
Or are you simply unsure which of the above is true?
If you want to best balance your time between fun and productive activities, you would first need to understand where your time goes. In other words, your first step would be to track it.
Take a notepad, a spreadsheet or a phone application document your activities throughout the day. Note however, that this would need to be in as much detail as possible.
In other words, avoid being generic notes like ‘5pm-10pm: afternoon relaxing’. Instead, write ‘5pm-6pm cooking’, ‘6pm-6.45pm: watching TV’ etc. Be as specific as you can. If an action changes, write down the time of change.
To be honest this will seem quite difficult to remember at the beginning. The good thing though is that you won’t be doing this forever. One to three weeks should be enough to give you an idea of where your time goes every day.
In other words, you will be able to identify how much time you spend towards productive activities versus on others. Based on your observations, you can focus all your efforts on slowly changing your routine and eliminating any unnecessary or time-consuming tasks that may keep you away from your goals.Productivity Tip #1 - Use Your Time Better By Tracking It Click to Tweet
2. Multitask wisely: the two sides of the coin
The above tip should ideally provide you with some important time-savings. If that’s not entirely true, the next tip could boost your productivity ratio by up to 100%.
The tip I am referring to is multitasking.
The important thing to remember is that you should approach it wisely - because sometimes you may end up spending more time on an activity than you used to.
The one side of the coin - the good one - refers to combining unavoidable chores with creative thoughts or activities.
For example, you can always read a book or listen to a podcast when commuting with the train or bus. You can even learn a few words a new language while waiting for your order at the coffee shop. In other words, you can increase your productivity during the gaps of your time chart by adding self -development or -relaxation activities in chores that don’t.
The other side of the coin - the widely mistaken one - refers to combining two productive activities at the same time.
For example, avoid listening to music when doing homework or watching TV when spending time with family or friends. In other words, if you need to put a lot of mental effort to the activity, avoid combining it with a similar one because you may end up operating less efficiently. Instead, prioritise them and work towards their completion one by one.
So make sure to choose how you approach your tasks and activities wisely. Work towards your goals by recognising what could be combined and what could be postponed.Productivity Tip #2 - Use your Time Better By Multitasking Wisely Click to Tweet
3. Devices can take a big chunk out of your day
We are overpowered by technology these days. From TV to mobile phones, gaming consoles to apps, the amount of technological advancements that exists to distract us is vast.
We have the ability to call someone abroad, send an email in seconds, and update someone with our location without moving a muscle, among others. In fact, there are so many ways we can save time using our devices.
But do we actually save time when using them? I seriously doubt it.
Let’s look around us. You may have seen someone preparing dinner for an hour while looking at videos on their phone - where the same task could be completed in 20 minutes. There are even people showing signs of OCD where they check their email or social media accounts every 5 minutes - they even seem to be addicted to them.
The big question is: are you using your device for your benefit, save time in completing tasks and make your life easier – or is it something you feel you can’t live without?
If you are in the latter group, make sure to avoid the excessive use of electronics. Set you email notifications to show up only when absolutely necessary and not business-threatening. And of course, put your phone away when spending quality time with family or friends.
I know - this may be a difficult task to achieve, especially at the beginning. Take small steps in breaking the habit but gradually work your way through it.
You will soon come to appreciate the real benefits and time savings from not using devices as much. You will be freed and more focused on the activities that will make you successful and truly happy.Productivity Tip #3 - Use Your Time Better By Hiding Your Devices Click to Tweet
4. Start prioritizing your tasks
Now you should have means to identify where your time goes, the amount of time each task requires, and how you can wisely combine activates to become more productive.
The final step to making better use of your time is to prioritize tasks and activities based on their importance and impact.
What this means is that when you have a list of 10 different things you need to take care of, start with the most important or urgent one and work your way down to the least vital one.
By doing so, you are essentially have evolved your ‘to-do’ list to a ‘priority’ list. Instead of feeling all stressed out about the amount of tasks, you will now know that the most important ones will go first, and in turn, take some of your worries away.
Note though that you would need to be absolute when it comes to this. In other words, make sure to block some time in your diary where you complete the most essential or urgent tasks of the day.Productivity Tip #4 - Use Your Time Better By Prioritizing Your Tasks Click to Tweet
To recap, these are the 4 essential tips that will help you use your time better:
- Focus on tracking your time
- Multitask wisely: the two sides of the coin
- Devices can take a big chunk out of your day
- Start prioritizing your tasks