We are all given the same 24 hours in a day, yet some people can get more done than others in the same time frame. How do they do this? What tricks do they use to accomplish more during their day?
The trick is simple: better time management! When you make an effort to manage your time, it will enable you to be more efficient and accomplish more of your to-do list. There are several perks to having better time management practices, including making things less stressful and providing more time to achieve the goals you set for yourself. Check out our top time management tips!
To accomplish better time management, the first step is getting organized. You must have an idea of what needs to be done in order to ensure things are completed. If you have schoolwork, a big project from your job, or other tasks, make a list of all items you need to complete. Creating a to-do list makes things easier, and you will get a visual of all the things you need to finish. You can even get more organized by including labels and categories for each task.
It’s also useful to arrange all the things needed to complete your tasks. You can make a folder and save everything with a system that works for you. For instance, all items you will need to use for your school project can be saved to a folder on your computer. Once you start working on the project, you can get it done much faster, and things will run more smoothly because everything is organized and located where you can easily find it.
Once you have everything organized, it’s time to put your tasks in order of importance. When you place items in the order of most importance, you make a decision on which items you will complete first. The most effective way is first to complete the tasks that are more important and more urgent. For instance, if you have started a school assignment that is half of your grade and due within the week, this should be located at the top of your list because it’s urgent and important.
If a task is important but not urgent, you can easily decide a time to get it done. For example, a work project that’s not due until next month can be scheduled for a later date. Some tasks have to be completed in a particular order. This is normal with bigger projects that have to be broken down into smaller tasks. Ensure you identify the steps that must be finished first, so you stay on track to getting the project completed.
Now that you have organized the items that need to be done, you must decide when to complete each task. Making these plans in advance places you on a path to success. Each day when you start working, you will have a clear idea of what to do next. A great way to achieve this is by using a calendar to plan out your time. To begin, grab the list of items you made earlier, and start putting aside time on your calendar to get them completed. Ensure that you add the more important and urgent items sooner rather than later.
Think about the things you will need to complete each task, and ensure you have all this ready to go so that when you start working on it, everything is there. Let’s say you are working on a graphic design project for your marketing class in school. You will need things ahead of time, like logos and images, so that when it’s time actually to get the work done, you have everything you need and can begin working. Also, taking breaks between different tasks can help you stay focused as you work throughout your day. This is essential when working on longer projects because you need to be refreshed and have a clear mind.
While planning for the weeks ahead, provide yourself with a deadline for each item you have to finish. If you are working on a bigger project, create smaller sections for it and add deadlines for each of these, as this will help you finish each task and stay on track. Remember to allow yourself enough time to get things done, and leave some additional time, just in case an item takes longer than expected.
Setting time limits to finish your work can also be useful. If you block off six hours to complete something, it will more than likely take the full six hours, but if you set four hours for yourself, then you can most likely get it done in four hours. For perfectionists, creating time limits can help stop you from getting stuck on an endless path of making adjustments to make things more perfect.
Join Us In 2021
Time management is a valuable skill that can contribute to your success. At East Ohio College, we work with our students one-on-one to balance family, work, and school. We are dedicated to providing support to our students from the first interaction until they graduate and beyond.