Is time management a recurring goal or resolution that you make year after year? Well, you’re not alone. But, unfortunately, it’s been found that a staggering 82% of people don’t have a time management system. And, in my opinion, that can only lead to chaos.
Thankfully, this is the time of the year to rectify this problem. But, the key is to eliminate time management errors, such as the following 12 mistakes that will sink you in 2022.
1. Falling into the time management trap.
“Time management promises us that if we become more efficient, we can make space to accommodate all of our to-dos comfortably,” writes Dane Jensen for HBR. “And yet, time management is like digging a hole at the beach: the bigger the hole, the more water that rushes in to fill it.” After all, with so many demands, blocking out an hour for downtime in your calendar “is akin to setting off a signal flare announcing your capacity.”
As a result, you tackle a new project, assist someone else with their priorities, or commit to unnecessary meetings.
“This is not to say that time management has no value,” adds Jensen. “Productivity is important. But in a world where burnout is running rampant, we also need strategies for eliminating volume instead of simply accommodating it.”
So, how can we avoid the time management trap? Give the following three strategies a test drive.
Reduce the volume of tasks.
Obvious? Sure. But, a lot of us struggle with this nonetheless.
It’s recommended that you merge your calendar and to-do list to have a complete view of your commitments. Then, if you’re already booked, either decline time requests, delegate or outsource them, or reschedule them when you have availability.
Replace decisions with principles.
Too many decisions can lead to cognitive overload. As a result, you’ll feel overwhelmed and more likely to make errors. To prevent this, establish principles like “No Meeting Wednesdays” or wearing the same outfit daily ala Steve Jobs.
Use structure, not willpower, to minimize distractions.
We waste a lot of time on distractions like email or social media. Use structure to your advantage rather than draining your energy fighting against these distractions.
For example, blocking certain apps and websites when you need to focus on your most important task. Or, check your inbox and social accounts at determined intervals, such as first thing in the morning, after lunch, and before the end of the workday.
2. Not setting personal goals.
“Personal goal setting is essential to managing your time well,” states the Mind Tools Content Team. Why? “Because goals give you a destination and vision to work toward.”
“When you know where you want to go, you can manage your priorities, time, and resources to get there,” they add. “Goals also help you decide what’s worth spending your time on and what’s just a distraction.”
That’s all well and good. But, how can you actually achieve your goals? Well, here are six strategies that Angela Ruth recommends in a previous Calendar piece;
- Take action right now.</…….