6 golden rules of time management

Time is going, yet moves not

Race against time, still cannot catch.

Motionless as may be, its speed I dare not match

Time is going, yet moves not.

What is it about time that we often find ourselves struggling with it? After all, time is our opportunity. It is the privilege of the period we have to exist and do what we want to do. We should be in control of our time, though not in a way to be accurate about every detail of our everyday events, but definitely in some other ways that put us above the struggling edge. The fact that we cannot hold down time and make use of it as frivolously as we wished is absolutely what gave time the edge over us. No wonder there is so much about the ‘big thing’ TIME. Time is precious and time is the absolute factor we run our lives on. It is almost everything. A time to laugh and a time to cry, a time to be serious and a time to play, there is about time for everything. How conscious are you about the privilege of the time you have?

Time management in the professional sense of it, is just but the process of exercising conscious control over your allocated work time with regards to specific activities, especially to increase efficiency or productivity. In situations like this, you talk about planning, organizing, scheduling, and prioritizing tasks- all these are office jargon.

How do you use your everyday time? Is it possible to turn your time into such that will become effective and very fulfilling?

How well do you seek to spend your time? Do you always look for time to chat away and get drenched in unending wrangling? Or is it work without limits? There is no doubt times are stiff now, but remember time will always throw back what you throw at it. If you believe in managing your time properly to accommodate responsible working, quality time with friends and family as well as other squares you have to attend then, you can make it. Good management of time and resources help create a balance in your work, social and spiritual life, and striking this balance, is what tells how dignifying an individual is. It is good to take advantage of the time we have to do what ought to be done. By this I mean don’t leave what you have to do today till tomorrow, because tomorrow may be too late. “Make hay while the sun shines”. Don’t postpone the start date of a project you want to start today till tomorrow, because the opportunities present today, may not be available tomorrow. If you are planning to make some amends with an old friend, family members or other loved ones, do it now, the opportunity you have now may cease to be there later. Tell someone you love them, show appreciation to those who deserve it and begin to make your mark where you believe necessary, for time waits not, even though we are the ones running.

A lot of people complain of lack of time as being a reason for not achieving some goals or starting off purported projects. I do not see this as true, even if it tends to be in the short run, it must not in the long run. At some point, you must be able to make time out for whatever you aim to achieve. For you to make great use of your time and achieve the balance you need in your life; these are five golden rules for you to follow.

Know your goals

What do you want to do within your time frame? Ask yourself what specific tasks are there for you to carry out to meet whatever you want to achieve; it may be things to do at work, going to the club after work, attend some worship centres, take your family out, hang out with friends, etc no matter how many, the important thing is first, to have the big picture of the things you would like to do to have the desired balance in your life. Once you can fit yourself into the big picture, you will then begin to work out some short-term and medium-term goals.

Things to do list

Making a list of all the activities you will like to include in your life to achieve your desired results is a great way to get you started with effective time management. Your ‘things to do list’, will help you stay organised and in control of your projects, tasks and time. With this, you will remember everything you need to do, without having to scramble over anything or loosing track of your tasks.

Prioritize your tasks

Spending extra time at work does not necessarily mean delivering good quality of job. However, delivering good quality job will definitely mean time well spent. So, once you have been able to list out all you want to do, now rearrange them in an order of importance, so the very important once get done in good time, taking them one after the other. Note that some tasks are urgent and important, while some are urgent but not important. It is better to comply with the importance of a task and not its urgency, after all, if it is not important, it may as well be delayed. Once you do your list, you will have all these to define and deal with. This arrangement will enable you to work smarter and achieve better results with less stress.

Plan and schedule your activities

Make sure you have an organised way to carry out all your planned tasks. For the very urgent and important ones, schedule them first. Allocate a time frame to begin and finish the task. Use a time log to plan all your activities and ensure you keep to your schedules. As you go over and complete any task or activity, strike it out and commence on the next one on the list. This way, you will avoid wasting time and your productivity as well as the fulfillment you derive in achieving your goals will continue to soar and increase your level of motivation.

Do not procrastinate

Sometimes, when you complain of lack of time as one of the reasons for not executing some tasks or projects, it usually is not. Rather, it is because of the fear of starting that task or project itself. It is important that you manage your fear of doing some certain things, by facing up to it and actually including such tasks in your ‘to do’ list and begin to give it a go. When you take one step forward, you will have the drive to continue trying and when you begin to try, you will be amazed what lessons and experiences you will begin to have. These are the forces that make you a better and stronger ‘you’. You always don’t have to win, but it feels great to have tried. Who says you won’t win anyway?

Take a break

Taking time out to relax and cool off is way to re-energize you. By the time you get back to work, you feel refreshed and probably fuelled with more ideas and renewed focus. When you plan for your break it also serves as a motivation towards achieving some goals and help you break up your work into more manageable chunks. Good time management helps in concentrating on important, urgent and non-urgent, activities at well designed time, making no activities ever becoming too tedious or stressful.