Manage yourself, and not your time

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Many of us claim our days are never wasted. “I’m very organized” we say “I know where I am going and what I’m going to do”. If you truly feel that way then you are in the minority. Most people become frustrated with a day that is unproductive . We would all like to get more done in a day

The idea of time management has been in existence for more than 100 years. Unfortunately the term “Time management” creates a false impression of what a person is able to do. Time can’t be managed, time is uncontrollable we can only manage ourselves and our use of time

Time management is actually self management. Its interesting that the skills we need to manage others are the same skills we need to manage ourselves: the ability to plan, delegate, organise, direct and control

There are common time wasters which need to be identified
In order for a time management process to work it is important to know what aspects of our personal management need to be improved. Below you will find some of the most frequent reasons for reducing effectiveness in the workplace. Tick the ones which are causing to be the major obstacles to your own time management. These we refer to as your “Time Stealers”.

Identifying your time stealers

  • Interruptions – telephone
  • Interruptions – personal visitors
  • Meetings
  • Tasks you should have delegated
  • Procrastination and indecision
  • Acting with incomplete information
  • Dealing with team members
  • Crisis management (fire fighting)
  • Unclear communication
  • Inadequate technical knowledge
  • Unclear objectives and priorities
  • Lack of planning
  • Stress and fatigue
  • Inability to say “No”
  • Desk management and personal disorganisation

Identifying the time wasters is the first step to effectively designing your strategies to manage your time and reduce stress and see how you may be both the cause and the solution to your time challenges.


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