Thursday, July 13, 2006

Time Management Tips

"Out of sight, out of mind." The reverse of that is true too. When it's in sight, it's in mind and we cannot help but be distracted. Studies have shown that a person working with a messy desk will spend, on average, one and a half hours per day either being distracted by things in their view or looking for things. That's seven and a half hours per week.

Keep the clutter before you at a minimum and you will have a more accurate focus on what you need to do to increase your daily productivity.

The rules up until 5 or 10 years ago were that, early on, you learned a skill, profession, or trade and practiced what you learned for the next 40 years, or so. No more. Half of what we know today, we did not know 15 years ago. The amount of information has doubled in the last 15 years and will double again in the next 18 months.

Many have a personal financial budget. Why not a personal Training Budget?

Budget (and spend) 10% of your time per year (about 24 days, 2 per month) for personal development to help you stay "ahead of the curve". Taking just 30 minutes per day for personal development will equal 15 training days over a year.

Effective aids:

"To Do" list - Write down things you have to do, then decide what to do at the moment, what to schedule for later, what to get someone else to do, and what to put off for a later time period.

Daily/weekly planner - Write down appointments, classes, and meetings on a chronological log book or chart. If you are more visual, sketch out your schedule.First thing in the morning, check what's ahead for the day; always go to sleep knowing you're prepared for tomorrow.

Long term planner - Use a monthly chart so that you can plan ahead.Long term planners will also serve as a reminder to constructively plan time for yourself.

Developing time management skills is a journey that needs practice.

One goal is to help yourself become aware of how you use your time.

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