Will You Win the Race Against the Clock?

May 30, 2011

Screenshot20110621at3.46.32PMThe constant feeling of racing against the clock to get everything done at home, at work or wherever we have commitments isoverwhelming just to think about. Ever have those days where you’re really on? I mean you can do everything that you needed to get done and then some. Then there are those days where nothing seems to get done, you feel defeated by the clock early and everything that can go wrong, does.
There are proven techniques to manage your time, but if you aren’t working on the psychological aspects of this you won’t be able to sustain a long term effect. Every day is a struggle for many people to prioritize their schedules and commitments without adding their thoughts and emotions into the process. Understanding how you feel about what you’re spending your time on is just as important to effectively managing your time as being organized and delegating are.
We all have time suckers in our day, whether it’s the internet or yourmother who wants to talk when you need to focus on that project you committed to. I enjoy the internet and talking to my mother, but know I shouldn’t do either just because I don’t want to work on the project I committed to. If the project requires you to be on the computer and specifically the internet, close all other windows or applications (Facebook, Twitter, ESPN, Outlook etc.) then turn off your phone even if it’s only for 15 minutes at a time.
The important question is why you didn’t want to work on the project to begin with? Ask this every time you find yourself procrastinating or downright dreading doing something, then figure out how to handle these for the future. Can the project be delegated to someone else? Could you schedule working on the project in small increments oftime over the course of days? Could you say no to projects like this?
Spend the next two weeks notating what you look forward to doing and what you don’t, re-evaluate your commitments from what you learn. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that most people procrastinate doing those things they don’t like and although you won’t be able to eliminate all those you certainly can reduce them.
Managing your time effectively requires organization of yourschedule, whether that comes in the form of a handwritten calendar you keep with you or hand held device (Blackberry, iPhone etc.) find one that works for you and commit to it. Whatever it is use it for scheduling EVERYTHING! Whether it’s a business meeting or going to the gym, schedule EVERYTHING! Need to go to the grocery store or the mall for a gift tonight? Put it in your schedule. Anything that happens in 30 minute increments should go in your schedule.
Planning how you spend your time becomes much easier as you schedule everything you do. Delegating those tasks you don’t like doing is so crucial to the overall management of your time, not to mention your sanity. Remind yourself everyday that you can’t do it all and that even if you think you can, you can’t!
Remember to always schedule time for you, without that time you cannot focus on the rest of your to do list and without focus your to do list will just take longer.