Time is money, therefore, any losses in time, not only in relation to business activities, should be perceived as regular financial losses. If we are unable to effectively manage our time, we have to prepare ourselves
Time is money, therefore, any losses in time, not only in relation to business activities, should be perceived as regular financial losses. If we are unable to effectively manage our time, we have to prepare ourselves to accept the inevitable losses and stress related to the problem. Time cannot be extended, nor can it be defeated. However, it is possible to adjust our daily plans in such a way so that time becomes our ally, not an enemy. It has to be stated that the elimination of time losses is possible when we are able to identify the activities which consume most of our time. The shortening or total cancellation of these activities is the key to effective time management. Every day consists of only 24 hours, and we should make good use of this time. If we do so, we will be able to say that we have eliminated all time losses and that we act effectively. How to achieve this? In this article, we provide a few hints on how to manage our time in the most optimal mode.
Trainings related to time management
Thanks to trainings devoted to time management we are able not only to identify at what point we suffer losses, but also to eliminate these losses. In consequence, our work becomes significantly more effective. There are many training companies that offer trainings that aim at the effective management of time. They are directed not only at managers, but also at employees of lower ranks and other individuals who have problems with the management of time, e.g., in family situations. Undoubtedly, the topic of time management is very popular today. More and more people become interested in this type of trainings. It may be that many people realized that thanks to the effective management of time they work more effectively, it is easier to achieve success, and develop better results. From the point of view of a company, such effects of time management are highly desired. This is why enterprise owners, recognizing the importance of effective time management, send their employees to appropriate training programs. If workers learn the ways to eliminate time losses, the whole enterprise, not only individual people, will benefit from their knowledge.
The contemporary job market is very crowded. There are many employees who possess similar qualifications and skills, but unfortunately, there are few employers eager to employ them. This is why there is so much talk about unemployment. Contemporary employers have very high expectations towards their employees or potential candidates for employees. They request the knowledge related to effective time management, and the application of this knowledge in practice. Therefore, it is very good to take part in such training programs even if we are currently unemployed. If we do not have the money to pay for this, we can always read about the topic in publications like this one.
24 hours – nothing more, nothing less
We live faster with every passing year. We have more and more obligations to fulfill, but daytime cannot be stretched. We cannot increase the number of hours. We have only 24 of them, and we have to remember that some of the time has to be devoted to sleep and the regeneration of strength. Both of these things are essential to take on new challenges, not necessarily related to our jobs. The more obligations we have, the less time we find. We begin to have the impression that 24 hours is way too short for us. However, if we plan our day properly, it may turn out that not only do we have time to fulfill every obligation, but we also find a spare moment just for ourselves – for relaxation. The skills of planning and the management of activities during a day are possible to acquire in most cases. Few people are so disorganized that they cannot be taught in this field through trainings or hints.
Many people experience the lack of time. Because we have so many tasks to perform, we devote less time to sleep. This leads to high levels of stress and nervousness in general. In order to avoid these negative effects, we have to work on establishing such a model of time management that everything works in an appropriate mode. Obviously, this is not an easy task.
The elimination of time losses
Before attempting to truly eliminate the time losses that we struggle with everyday, we have to become aware that some matters are beyond our direct influence. They occur without our involvement. Some matters can be influenced only indirectly, whereas others are closely connected to us. We can work on these two types of events only, i.e., we can only identify and eliminate the time losses of these two kinds. How we use our time highly depends on how we approach the events which are directly related to us. The most important thing is not to allow anybody to completely manage our time. We cannot become a slave of our time – we are to become its master. The best solution to the problem of having too many obligations and tasks to perform is to divide our work between our subordinates or workmates. If we face a similar situation at home, we should share our duties with other household members.
In order to effectively eliminate time losses which we experience every day, we have to follow a few universal rules concerning the management of time.
Rule number one
One of the first subjects during training programs devoted to time management is the Pareto rule, or the so called 20/80 rule. 20% of our time should generate 80% of effects. Unfortunately, it is usually the case that 80% of our time generates 20% of effects. In simple words, the most important of our tasks generate the highest amount of results. However, we must not consider the remaining 80% of our tasks as unimportant. We must not ignore them completely, though we have to remember that many of these tasks are a source of unnecessary time losses and because of that they should be eliminated from our daily plan. During the creation of our schedule for a given day we have to remember to focus on the most important tasks and assign the biggest amounts of time and energy to these particular activities. Thanks to that, the effects achieved by employees become clearly visible and are noticed by their superiors. This may result in a bonus for great efficiency or important achievements.
Rule number two
Here, we are going to talk about the 40/60 rule which should not be confused with the previously mentioned Pareto rule. This is about something totally different. According to it, we should plan no more than 40% of our day. The remaining 60% should be left to events and situations which are totally unexpected and which very often interfere with our regular cycle of work and other obligations. If we give ourselves some time for unexpected events which may always occur, there will be no problem with time losses. We must not plan every single minute of our day because when something goes wrong or when an unexpected situation appears the whole rhythm of work may crumble. This can lead to very dire consequences that entail serious financial losses.
Rule number three
It is possible to support time management if we have the possibility to apply some tools that help in this activity. Many people have eliminated time losses thanks to notebooks and calendars in which they write down information about their scheduled meetings and tasks. Such organizing tools, in the form of a traditional paper notebook or a computer application, help introduce order into our projects and create a hierarchy among the projects for which a given person is responsible.
Rule number four
Planning, planning, and even more planning… Do not let others convince you that planning is a waste of time. On the contrary, if we plan our activities and projects, we are able to organize our day in such a way that we do not experience any problems with time. Usually, in order to appropriately plan our day, it is enough to analyze the previous twenty four hours. On such a basis, it is possible for us to create a schedule for the next day. Planning should be carried out in the evening, when we have some spare time. The truth is that, in most cases, we need no more than 10 minutes for this. We should note down all the things we have to do and determine how much time we need for these tasks. We should always try to do everything according to plan and stick to the temporal boundaries that we created.
Rule number five
The most important tasks which have the highest priority on our list should be done in the first place. Thanks to the establishment of priorities in our professional and private lives we are able to optimally manage our time. At the same time, it is much easier for us to eliminate any losses in time. The only problem here is to learn how to properly assign priority levels to our activities. The general rule is to do the most important things first, and then to proceed to the less important ones and those which are easier to perform. If we reverse this order, the awareness that the most difficult tasks are still before us weighs heavily on our minds. The stress that results from such situations causes time losses – which we try so hard to avoid.
Rule number six
The plan of our day should be adjusted to our working hours. Some people work more effectively in the morning, while others prefer to do their job in the afternoon or in the evening. Therefore, it is worth to carefully consider the category to which we belong. After that, we should organize our tasks and activities in such a way that we will find the time to complete everything and still have some spare time and energy.
Nowadays, there are many well-designed computer applications that help in the effective management of work time through careful planning. Such programs help eliminate time losses, though we have to remember that they do not do our work for us. If we do not make conscious use of our work time, time losses will still appear, and on a greater scale. Let us not forget about that and rationally plan our tasks basing on the rules we provided in this article.
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