Thursday, February 24, 2011

Making good use of your time

Making good use of your time

Introduction: Are you striving to manage your time? Do you always get the things done at the last hour? Do you procrastinate? Do you feel stressed out often and overwhelmed with the work load that you have to cope up with? Well, then this article is just for you. My goal in this article is simple to make you aware of the concept of actual time management and to hand you some tips that can go a long way in helping you to manage your time.

Are we managing time? Time Management, though the word has come to stay with us is a misnomer. What is time? Time is a unit of measuring the movement of the sun across the sky. So can you manage time? No, for sure. But we can manage ourselves so that we make good and productive use of time. So the first point is that time management is nothing than managing ourselves against time. When you manage and use time to your effect, you become productive, happy, healthy and lead a fulfilled life.

Procrastination plague: Many of us are plagued by the disease of procrastination. We tend to think that we have all the time in the world to do a certain important task and we can always do it next time. Procrastination could be overcome by simply telling yourself that some day today or tomorrow there’s no escaping from what you are bound to do so why not do it now so you could be free later. Also procrastination could be overcome if we break a bigger task in smaller units. We decide to do some part of the work today and then give ourselves a pat on the back and go for the next tomorrow. Doing a difficult or bigger task in such a manner would make us feel less stressed about the work and we would be happy to do it. Reward yourself after you have completed each days task this will help you to associate the heavy task with something pleasurable and give you motivation to go for it.
Travel your own road: By this I mean you should know your passion, your strengths and formulate your own goals. Don’t travel another person’s path, it may not be meant for you. If you have not formulated your own goals you will waste time and energy in doing something that you are not meant for and again this will keep you from managing time effectively. So what’s your goal? Are your daily activities defining your goal, taking you towards your goal or away from them?

Waiting is killing? No more: Waiting is killing they say, no more! When you are waiting for your business partner to arrive in the hotel lobby or you are on the platform for your train to arrive yet, or in the doctor’s OPD in line what do you do? You wait looking at your watch and getting upset about the person or the train to arrive. Instead carry a book with you, read it or you could take out your notebook and type the important letter you had to type. The secret is to use your waiting time constructively. We don’t realize how much of waiting time put together could amount to in our lives. One could do lot of jobs in those waiting hours so that at the end of the day you don’t have reason to complain that 24 hrs weren’t enough for you.

Schedule your time: Organizers, time-tables, diaries, palm tops play an important role in scheduling one’s time. Plan your day ahead. Rather as Stephen Covey suggests, it’s best to plan weekly. Know roughly what you are going to do throughout your whole week, jot it down. The magic or writing you week or day ahead is that it keeps you in control of your time and day. If you are not sure what you are going to do at a certain time of the day, then somebody else may use your time and make you dance to their tunes. When you write down something, it also shows your seriousness about the matter, so always write down your goals and what you plan to do on a particular day and time. When you write, you are concretizing your abstract plans. Plans, ideas are abstract they need the physical world to manifest and writing them down is the first step to see your goals being materialized.

Be Proactive: Losers wait for their destiny to unfold; winners design and create their destiny. Being Proactive will go a long way in helping you to manage time. Being proactive means choosing action over being passive and being acted upon by circumstance, people and surroundings. But being proactive also means choosing your response, what action you would take. You are the master of your destiny. You don’t wait for fortune to come in your life. You make your own fortune. You don’t get dejected when your ship doesn’t arrive on the shore you swim out in the sea to reach out for your ship. It means taking responsibility for our actions. When my boss gives me an assignment, I don’t wait till he furnishes me memo. I go doing about the task from the word go. I don’t wait for the divorce to be filed; I become a proactive father and husband and spend quality time with them. I don’t wait for the doctor to sound the red herring; I start exercising and eating quality food. I don’t wait for winning a lottery, I work hard, put my dreams into action and create my wealth, happiness and life.

Friends, time cannot be managed but we can surely manage ourselves and use our time to be more productive, happy, healthy and fulfilled. Let me end by stating the famous quote: “This time like all other times is a very good one, if we but know what to do with it.” Emerson.

Joy be all yours.