Time Management – Managing Your Day
The best way to make the most of your day is to prepare for it in advance. Having a plan gives you a good understanding of how the day will unfold. That way, you are not getting caught off guard and reacting to the situations that happen during the day. If something does come up unexpectedly, you are better able to adjust and stay productive by having a plan.
Below is a list of suggestions for managing your day and maximizing your productivity.
For every minute spent in organizing, an hour is earned. – Ben Franklin
Planning your Time
The key to time management and organization is to plan your time. One of the best time management techniques is to use a time planning system that contains everything you need to do. You can do this by using a calendar/planner, making lists, and creating reminders.
Begin Each Day by Planning
At the beginning of each day, spend a few minutes determining what you need to do that day. Start with your set agenda items for the day (i.e. those which are already set on your schedule) such as meetings, appointments, or classes. Determine how much time of your day these items will take up. Then determine how much time you have for other tasks and activities.
Create a to-do list
After you have determined your agenda items, create a to-do list with all the other tasks and activities you need to get accomplished that day. Include how long you believe the task will take.
Once you have a list for your day’s activities with the associated times of completion, the next step is for you to organize this list in order of priority with your most important tasks at the top. This gives you a solid grasp of what tasks are most important to complete first, and what you can complete later in the day or another day.
A great benefit to writing your tasks down is that you significantly increase the likelihood of those tasks getting completed. Studies have found that the mere fact a person has written a task down they deepened their commitment to completing that task.
Make a Schedule
After you have your set agenda items and created your to-do list, you should make a schedule for the day giving each task and item a set time frame. Start the schedule by plotting the set items (i.e. meeting and appointments) with the amount of time it will take to complete. Then place the items from your to-do list in the available time slots. Place the top priorities from your list at the beginning of your schedule. This way you can ensure you address the higher priority items.
This schedule becomes a map to guide you from morning to evening in the most effective way to help you increase your productivity.