Managing Time: Tips and Tricks

By Christian Baker.

Students have been told about the importance of time management but often don’t understand what time management is. It is “the process of organizing and planning how much time [spent] on specific activities” (MindTools). Although it may seem like it is a waste of time at first, the benefits are worth the effort. For instance, most people experience greater productivity, less stress, and more efficiency.

There are many ways to increase productivity. One of the most important is to know the goals to achieve. When you focus on important goals, there are three items to keep in mind. The goals set need to be focused on a specific result that is measurable. For instance, if a goal is to improve a grade in a class, a percentage increase in a specified time must be determined. Have a purpose that drives this goal. This purpose will keep you working towards the goal. Finally, have a plan with many parts. Instead of being limited to one or two huge parts, divide it into maybe 50 smalls parts that are easy. Then eliminate the least productive of the tasks.

Another problem comes when many different assignments are required. An easy solution is called “chunking” (Robbins). Chunking is when tasks are sorted based on what they relate too. As an example, there are “must-be-done” assignments. Under that, sort the tasks according to what they relate to English, Math, etc. This will enable better focus on specific tasks due to not switching topics. To help enable chunking, make sure to plan ahead. Some people are morning people and others are not. Find a time that works: either in the morning or at night, and spend ten to fifteen minutes planning the next 24 hours.

Even when understanding what the goals are, sometimes not every task can be completed. This is why prioritization is important. Understand which tasks are both important and urgent so they can be done first. If they are important but not urgent, find another time to complete them. If they are urgent but not important, try to avoid them as much as possible. The same goes for tasks that are neither urgent nor important. This can be difficult at first. However, saying no will help. Family and friends will understand if something comes up that is important and urgent.

Try to get rid of distractions that pester and distract from the big tasks. Oftentimes, this is the result of social media or phones. The amount of time saved will probably be shocking. The final and most important tip is to be healthy. Take the time to sleep and exercise. The mind will become alert and function better. These tips are the start of more efficient work and will lead to more free time that is truly free.

 

Works Cited

Robbins, Tony. “Time Management Strategies to Make Life More Effective.” Tonyrobbins.com, http://www.tonyrobbins.com/importance-time-management/time-management-strategies/?gclid=CjwKCAjw2_LcBRBYEiwA_XVBU4QLabmJtOovHG5j8usHXLbo0_x6xItH3v59HJ7nRfI-sqSJc_A2ABoC_GEQAvD_BwE.

The Mind Tools Content Team. “What Is Time Management? Working Smarter to Enhance Productivity.” Groupthink – Decision Making Skills Training from MindTools.com, Mind Tools, http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newHTE_00.htm.

Polevoi, Lee. “8 Tips for Effective Time Management.” QuickBooks, QuickBooks, 9 July 2018, quickbooks.intuit.com/r/employees/8-tips-for-effective-time-management/.

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