Are you struggling to find enough hours in the day to get everything done? Do you feel you're always rushing from one task to another, and never actually getting anything done?
Having a huge workload can be overwhelming, but there are a few simple things you can do to manage your time more efficiently.
When you become better at time management, you have more time to do something well, which improves your productivity levels, puts you in control of your work, and gives you valuable project management skills. When you manage your time more effectively, you also reduce unnecessary overtime, freeing you up to do the things that you enjoy in your personal life.
Here 8 ways you can improve your productivity with better time management:
1: Prioritise your workload
Not all tasks are created equal, and some tasks are more important than others. When you're planning your day, start by identifying the most important tasks that need to be completed. These are the "must-do" items on your list. Once you've identified the most important tasks, you can start working on them one by one.
2: Set deadlines
If a task doesn't have a deadline, it's easy to push it off until later. But if you set a deadline for yourself, you're more likely to get the task done in a timely manner. For example, let's say you need to write a report for your boss. If you don't set a deadline, you might put it off until the last minute. But if you give yourself a deadline of Friday at noon, you're more likely to get the report done on time.
3: Keep a list
One of the best ways to manage your time is to keep a list of tasks. This way, you can easily see what needs to be done and when it needs to be done. There are many different ways to keep a list of tasks, such as using a physical planner or an online to-do list. Find the method that works best for you and stick to it!
4: Break down large tasks into smaller ones
Another effective way to manage your time is to break down colossal tasks into smaller ones. This will make the task feel less daunting, and it will be easier to complete. For example, if you need to get your taxes ready for the ATO. That is a LOT of work! But if you break it down into smaller tasks - such as collecting all your receipts in one sitting, finding all your deductibles for the year in another, etc - it will be much easier to complete.
5: Take breaks
If you're feeling overwhelmed by a task, it's important to take a break. This will help you clear your head and come back to the task with fresh eyes. Sometimes all you need is a five-minute break to reset yourself. So, if you're feeling stuck, don't hesitate to step away from your work for a few minutes to go for a walk or get a glass of water.
6: Remove any distractions
If you can't focus because you're constantly being interrupted, it will take you longer to complete the task. You can eliminate distractions by turning off your email notifications, putting your phone on silent, and closing any tabs that aren't related to the task at hand.
7: Set a timer
If you find yourself procrastinating on a task, try setting a timer. For example, if you need to write for one hour, set a timer for 60 minutes. This will help you stay focused and on track. And once the timer goes off, you can take a five-minute break before starting the next task.
8: Delegate tasks
If you're struggling to complete all of your tasks, try delegating some of them to other people. This will help you free up some time so that you can focus on the most important tasks. Of course, you'll want to make sure that the person you're delegating to is capable of completing the task. But if they are, delegation can be a great way to manage your time more effectively.
Remember, effective time management takes a bit of practice, but before you know it your new routines will become a habit, and you’ll wonder how you ever got by without good time management skills.