Being Thankful and Grateful is Always Important
about 14 days ago.
Updated 3 months ago.
Today we are talking about ideas to apply effective time management principles to help you be even more success.
One of the success principles of any successful person is effective time management. In order to create your ideal life and business, you must learn to schedule EVERYTHING (even showers initially, eating, drive time, working out, family time, etc.) and be extremely effective at time management. If you are like me, you think you can get done more than you actually can, so you run out of time to get everything done you put on your list. For me, this isn’t a good feeling, especially if it were to happen day after day.
When you begin to calendar your activities, take a look at everything you have to do and how long you think it will take to get each one done and then add “cushion” time to each activity. I haven’t been able to come up with a rule of them for how much extra time should be given to each activity. It is dependent on you and the activity. You may have to explore in the beginning to figure out what works best for you based on how well you estimated the initial time for each activity.
If you actually do finish the activity before the time you allotted, you have the gift of time to move on to the next activity. Put everything on your calendar. In time, you will become better at how much time you actually need for each activity.
You want to also make sure to include buffer time for something that has a deadline. Say you have to submit a proposal to a prospective client by a certain date. In order to have it done, you determine approximately how much time you think it will take to create the proposal and then add a bit of time to that total. You then give yourself a deadline for completion that is 2 or 3 days before the actual ‘drop dead’ deadline.
This means that if you have issues and unforeseen things that occur, you still will complete it by the actual deadline date. This works well when you have to rely on others to help you get something done. If you get it done early, all the better for you and what impression it will make with the prospective client.
You may have to go through trial and error on a schedule until you find optimal results. Some people are early birds and will tackle certain tasks first thing, while others will find they are more effective in the afternoon. Just be sure to schedule tasks when they can be achieved with the greatest efficiency and outcome.
Calendaring your activities will also allow you to identify similar activities that can be completed together. If you have several activities that are the same type of activity, do them all at the same time. For example, you would do certain types of calls all at the same time, interview potential clients, conduct annual meetings with clients, etc.
For lower-payoff activities like administrative duties and email, specify during certain times in the day they will be completed. When you don’t continually have to change ‘hats’ while working on the activities required to achieve your goals, you will save a lot of time and mental energy.
What are the highest payoff activities you can do to achieve your goals in the timeframe you have set? You want to make sure you spend more of your time on these activities versus other lower payoff activities. Work on those activities that produce the results you want and not the ones that might be easier to do or more fun or don’t cause you to go outside your comfort zone.
You may go so far, while at work, to say that you only take calls from clients during certain times in order to maximize your efficiency. To honor your calendar, ask them if it would be okay to call them back within 24 hours – or ideally schedule a time when you can speak to them so you don’t play phone tag (that is a big waste of time). Color-coding your activities could also help for a “quick-at-a-glance” reminder.
The important part of time management is first to put all your activities on the calendar and then HONOR the calendar. For some, this is the hardest part to do. They let too many distractions or other things get in their way of honoring their calendar. For many, working out is the first activity that gets bumped way too often. The best solution for this is to figure out a time when it works best for you to work out and scheduling meeting a personal trainer or friend at the gym. Or, join an online program like the www.loseit.com or www.sparkpeople.com. Think of the benefit to you, your family, and your clients when you are healthy.
Other activities like family and personal time can get overlooked, so be sure to add it to your calendar and honor it. Activities like ‘date night,’ time with your children, massages, getting your car washed, dance lessons, donating blood, etc. should be on your calendar. Think about all the things that you do and would like to do over the year, and how you could schedule them on your calendar, so they actually get done.
When you can, schedule recurring events as far in advance as possible. For example, I work with a personal trainer 3 days a week. It is the same three days and at the same time each week, assuming I’m in town. I schedule this for the entire year. I can always change it if I need to, but the time is blocked for my personal trainer time for 12 months out.
Start making a list of activities you would like to put on your calendar for the next month or few months. Put them in your calendar and then honor your calendar. What do you want to accomplish?
After you have made your list, determine how much time each task will take, and then put each activity on your calendar. Now look at your schedule.
• Are the business activities that have the most time allotted your highest payoff activities?
• How much time do you spend or want to spend on tasks that don’t produce the results you really want? Could those tasks be delegated and taken off your calendar?
• How much time do you have for your spouse or significant other, your family, your friends, your health, and travel?
How does it feel to put all your activities down on a calendar and see where you spend your time? If you would like your days to be different, then change your schedule. Your calendar should be designed to have the highest possible impact on you achieving your professional and personal goals.
If you are like many people, you will quickly realize that you don’t have enough time in the day to calendar everything you want and need to get done. This is why you must prioritize your activities.
Remember, creating your ideal life and business is all about creating balance. If you are having a problem with honoring your calendar and maximizing your time, here are some questions to answer at the end of each day. Ask these 10 questions at the end of the day to see if it helps you to honor your calendar better and better each week. You may have more questions to add to this list.
1. Did my calendar have the highest pay-off activities on it today, so I know I am making progress toward my goals?
2. Did I do what was on my calendar today? If no, why not?
3. Am I as prepared as possible for the activities on my calendar tomorrow? If no, what can I do differently next time to be even more prepared?
4. What distractions did I allow to get in my way today?
5. What will I do to avoid distractions that get in my way in the future?
6. What adjustments, if any, do I need to make on my calendar for me to honor my calendar tomorrow?
7. What else can I delegate (and to whom would I delegate it to)?
8. How can I better leverage my resources to assist me?
9. How do I feel about my progress today and honoring my calendar?
10. What else has to happen for me to be the very best I can be at time management?
It only takes five minutes to answer these 10 questions at the end of your day and to review your progress. It also helps to keep you focused on the most important activities you need to do in order to achieve your goals.
I can’t stress enough the importance of applying effective time management principles and honoring your calendar. You will find yourself more in control of your life and you will be even more efficient. You becoming very effective at time management will have a positive impact on your life – personally and professionally. Many people tell me they feel they waste 2-3 hours per day. By applying effective management principles, you will be amazed at how much more productive you can be every single day from this day forward. Time management is an important and key success factor and you must be skilled at maximizing your time. Focus on the results you want today, next week, next month, this year, and with every conversation and activity you do. Create your reality! You can do it!
--Will & Ariel Durant say: “The future never just happened. It was created.”
To download my complimentary Time Log Exercise and help you and your team members be even more time efficient and better at time management, so you are in a higher probability position to achieve your goals, go to: https://www.accountabilitycoach.com/time-log/. Simple instructions come with the sample document to help you know how to complete the time log.
To help you be even more effective and efficient, so you can achieve your goals at an accelerated rate, you can delegate more to your team members than you have or might think possible. Stop holding on to things that can be done by someone else and do only those activities that you can do and can’t be done by anyone else. Stop doing revenue generation / business development avoidance activities and delegate more! You should be doing only those activities that only you can do and nobody else can. Successful people are excellent delegators, so work at being an even better delegator and be even more successful.
Download my Free Delegation List Sample Exercise to help you identify more activities to delegate, by going to https://www.accountabilitycoach.com/delegation-list-sample/.
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