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7 Practical Tips For Effective Time Management

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Imagine, you wake up tomorrow and in your bank account, you´ll have 86 400$.

And the day after tomorrow, the same amount of money will be delivered to your bank account…

It happens every day. But only when you use all 86 400$ that day. You couldn´t save a 1$.

What´d you do with this money? Would you spend all of them, or not? 

I think, I know the answer, it´s the same as mine…I would spend it like hell!

People always have a clear answer, when this question is about money…

But, every day we receive a gift of 86 400 seconds, too. Unfortunately, when it´s “just” time people waste the MAJORITY of those seconds.

Warren Buffet said about the importance of time this: “Time is the only thing, you can´t buy. I can buy basically anything I want, but I will never be able to buy time.”

You, me, we all have 24 hours a day, or as you wish 86 400 seconds.

No one, not even Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Donald Trump or anyone you can think of… No One Have More Than 24 Hours A Day.

But yet, some people manage to use their time wiser and accomplish much more, than others…

So, if you recently felt like this…

 

Just keep reading…

Because, today, I will share with you 7 Tips, that make you as productive as you always wanted to be.

1. WRITING YOUR DAILY GOALS

A simple process of writing down your thoughts, goals or to-do lists is extremely important, for executing your tasks later in a day.
The process of writing things down is the closest one to actual execution. Think about it…

  • When you already invested your time and energy into taking pen and paper (or a laptop) and actually write down things you want to accomplish today, it´s a much higher probability that you will eventually take action, to finish this tasks.

Grant Cardone in his best-selling book The 10X Rule, encourages people to write down daily goals twice a day. One time in the morning, and the second time in the evening.

In the morning it sets a tone for your day, motivate you and makes you “hungry” for success.

In the evening it´s crucial for analyzing what was good, what went wrong and how to make it better next time.

Brian Tracy said about planning following – “Every minute you spend in planning saves 10 minutes in executionthis gives you a 1,000% Return on Energy!

Another benefit (if the one before wasn´t enough, which it should! :))…
…is that setting your goals daily prevent you from being overwhelmed and intimidated by a “Big Picture”.

Making a mini-goals from your big goal is motivating because it´s something actionable, something that may be finished this day.

For example, you can´t lose 10 pounds today, but I am sure as hell you can go for a 30 minutes run.

Will Smith in one video I saw maybe 10 years ago said:
„Don´t try to build a wall. Say I am gonna lay this brick, as perfectly as a brick can be laid.
Do this every day, and soon, you have a wall.“

2. PRIORITIZE (First Things First)

So, if you are convinced to write your daily goals, you already know, what you should do in your upcoming day.

But, you can´t do it all in one moment. That´s why you need to PRIORITIZE. And my suggestion to you is: Do „the hardest task“ of your day first!

Maybe you are asking…

Why the hell would I do the hardest task in the morning? Don´t I have the whole day for it?

Well, I asked the same, when I read about it in this book – First Things First from Stephen Covey.

Here´s an explanation…

You, me anyone you know, we all have 2 limited resources in a day – TIME and ENERGY.

Your energy level is the highest in the morning, you are well-rested and you didn´t deal with all these problems yet.

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With every next hour, you have less energy and willpower, then you had before.

That´s why it´s so important to always do the most important task of your day first!

Amish have one saying: „When you have something difficult to do, jump right into. Next time you notice, it´s halfway done.“

When I studied the structure of a day of billionaire Mark Cuban, I found out he said this:

„Whatever stressful things there are, I try to get them done right in the morning.“

So, try it for one week…

Arrive at your job, start with the most important task you should do. Try to not wasting time checking emails, FB and stuff like that. (you´ll have plenty of time for that after you finish the Big Task of the day).

3. AVOID PUTTING OFF THINGS

Unconsciously, we always worry about something, we suppose to do, what we already should have done already.

Let me give you an example:

My classmate from college asked me to send him some notes from a lecture he didn´t attends.

Instead, I do it immediately when I get to the computer, I started to work, I was finishing my daily goals, but I wasn´t as productive as I wanted to be. The reason is, that I subconsciously always kept in mind:

Don´t forget to send those notes, don´t forget to send those notes!

Wouldn´t it be better, when I first sent them, and then start working towards my goals?

It would take me 30 seconds to find those notes and send it to him, my head would be clear and I would focus only on work I suppose to do.

That day I learned a lesson:
Anytime you have something trivial to do, don´t put it on your list, do it immediately, when you can.

You will save a bit amount of mental energy.

Because we, somehow manage to spend more mental energy on worrying about tasks, then actually doing them.

4. DEADLINES

I understand you may hate the word deadline. But the deadline is a great tool for your productivity if you know how to use it…

Deadline keeps you motivated to finish a task,  even when you have no mood for it. This is why I highly recommend setting deadlines for yourself.

When your boss told you, that you need to finish this task until Friday at 2 p.m., say your own deadline, let´s say Thursday at 5 p.m.

  • Firstly, it would be your own deadline so you will be more motivated.
  • Secondly, when something goes wrong, you will have time to fix it.
  • Thirdly, even when you don´t keep your deadline, you will get a lot more work, then you would do if you didn´t have a deadline.

Another great benefit is, that you are less likely to get distracted when you set yourself a deadline.

For instance, you have to write an article, which may get you to let´s say, 2 hours. Instead of doing it for 2 hours, put your deadline to 1 hour.

What do you think is better for you? 1 Hour of Deep Focused Work or 2 Hours of Distracted Work?

– 1 hour of deep focused work is much more than 3 hours of work with distractions.

5. TAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF

I already pointed out this above… This is an answer, to question, you´ve been asking yourself for a long time.

How Some People Could Accomplish So Much In Their Day, While I Struggle With Finishing One Task? 

The answer is —>

 

Perhaps, you just need to:

  • Write an article,
  • Make 10 phone calls,
  • Finish campaign in your work,
  • Or even learn a new life-skill.

The key is to focus only on finishing this task WITHOUT ANY DISTRACTION!

It means, closes your door…
turn off your cell phone and every website on your computer not related to your task…
set yourself a deadline and do the work!

You´ll be amazed, how much time you´ll save and how productive you´ll become.

I bet you already heard about Jeff Bezos. CEO of AMAZON (currently wealthiest man in the world).

Here´s why he got there…

When he was a little kid, in school, he attended painting lessons. Children were deployed in a circle. They should paint, and after a while, a teacher stopped them, and all children should move to the next chair and continue with painting, on a paper, their classmate leaves there.

But, when they should move, there was 1 little guy, who worked so focused, they couldn´t stop him. He was so focused on finishing his painting, the teacher has to move him manually. The reason why he is the wealthiest man in the world is his ABILITY TO FOCUS.

You may think… “Wait, I tried it, and I couldn´t. I just got distracted so easily.“

My answer is – Me too…

But, focusing only on finishing your task is a habit.

More important than length, is to start. More precisely, start Step-by-step. Start with 5 min., then 10 min., 20. min.

Set a timer for this amount of time, and until the timer rings, do the work.

Then, make a little break, when you can check your emails, make a phone call, go to the bathroom or make yourself a cup of coffee.

For this, I highly recommend an app called – Pomodoro – which make everything I just described, for you.

Except for the real work, that no one can make for you. 😊

6. NEVER EVER MULTITASK!!

Many people think multitasking is efficient.

When you can make 2 tasks at the same time, isn´t it great?

This couldn´t be further from the truth…

Countless studies showed, that by multitasking, you are up to 40% LESS PRODUCTIVE.

Another study shows, that only 2% of people are actually proficient by multitasking. 

It´s logical, that 2% is pretty low odds for you, to continue or even consider to start multitasking. So, my suggestion to you is to stop multitasking.

If you have 2 tasks to finish, take 1 hour to the first one, and 1 hour to the second one.

If you will stop multitasking, and rather focus on one problem, and then on a second problem, you´ll be more efficient, productive, and you´ll finish both tasks much sooner, than if you would deal with both at the same time.

7. LONG TIME MANAGEMENT

At the end of this article, I would like to give one extra tip for long time management.

I believe only when you know how to properly manage your goals in a long-term, you can divide them into smaller, less achievable goals.

The first technique is from Marketer Russell Brunson.

He talks about dividing his goals into 5 groups.

What I like the most, is this technique can be used for health, professional or even for your family goals.

Hint: Correlated with football 😊

  • Hall Of Fame Goal – long-term goal – it´s where you want to be for a few years (Footballer wants to be in a hall of fame).
  • Superbowl Goal – yearly goal – what you have to do in this year, to win Superbowl?
  • Monthly goal – what you have to do this month, to win Superbowl?
  • Weekly goal – what you have to do this week, to accomplish your monthly goal, which leads you to your Superbowl goal, which leads you to Hall of fame goal?
  • Daily goal – what task have to you complete today, to reach a weekly goal, then a monthly goal, Superbowl goal and finally Hall of fame goal?

See? Pretty straightforward…

Every day you need to complete little goals, which sum up gets you to higher, and higher goals.

It helps you to keep in mind, that you can´t afford to skip a day, to be lazy or procrastinate.

The second technique is from the legendary Warren Buffet, whom I think, don´t need further introduction.

This is called: rule 5/25.

And then, simply focus only on these 5 and forget every other goal.

Exactly as Steve Jobs once said:

“Don´t even think about other goals unless you already reached goals that are on the top of your list.”

Many people struggle with choosing, what their goals should be.

When it´s also your case, check out my blog post here about 1 technique, which helps you to always make the best decision.


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Please, leave a comment below if you have any further questions. I would love to hear your insights.


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My name is Patrik. I live in Slovakia and I am owner of dayprov.com. Dayprov is about Everyday improvements in our lives. You will find here tips about success, motivation, personal development and anything you want. Your recommendations for new interesting blog posts you would like to read about send to patrik@dayprov.com.
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