Have you ever wondered on any given day that you could have done so many things and felt accomplished before you went to sleep? Or have you ever thought of doing things in advance so that you can have free time to relax, play games, or anything that may not be work  elated? Have you ever managed your time so that you were able to do things that need to be done and have the ability to enjoy your spare time?

Time seems to be an issue for most of us. We all have lots of things to do, but some of them have nothing to do with what is truly important. With so many demands on our time and with the fast-paced world we are living in, it is easy to think and feel that we are losing control.

Image courtesy of www.mattmorris.com

Image courtesy of www.mattmorris.com

17 Tips In Managing Your Time And Taking Control

Before you can make more time for the things that matters, you need to identify and know what those important things are. You need to be clear and grasp the values and the goals that you want to achieve. Know what tasks are important and once you understand its importance, you will be able to manage or organize your time. Now let’s not waste time and get down to business on how to time manage effectively.

1. Chaos – Step Away From It

The only way to you will be able to free up your time is to step back and look at your life from an objective perspective. Once you realize the important to the mundane things, you will be able to define what you really want to spend your time doing. Focus on one change at a time until you’re able to put the important tasks first.

2. Make A List

What do you need to do and what you love to do. List your priorities to avoid getting sidetracked and distracted. Write the things you need to do based on their importance. Once a task is completed, cross them out. Any unfinished task should carry over the next day.

Image courtesy of www.babble.com

Image courtesy of www.babble.com

3. Synchronize Calendars

Synchronize the calendars on your phone, wall or in your room so that you will not miss out on anything important. This will also prevent confusion on your part if you need to be somewhere for an appointment or a party.

4. Appointments Should Be Done After Work

Whether it is for some goal or task or anything, make an appointment after 5 pm. This works especially for social meets. If you organise this for after work, you will be sure to go and you will be able to attend to other things on your to-do list if there’s any. You will be able to leave on time also and be home for the much needed rest.

Image courtesy of lifehacker.com

Image courtesy of lifehacker.com

5. Wake Up Early

If you wake up early, you will be able to start on all tasks and finish them earlier. You will be too focused on your task that you will not be distracted. Once you have finished by the afternoon, you have all the time to relax.

6. Make An Action Plan For Each Project

For every project, there will always be an effective sequence or steps to get it done right. Doing this will also save you time and effort because you will be able to identify what step need to be done first. It’s better to write down the steps so that you will not miss out on anything.

Image courtesy of michaelhyatt.com

Image courtesy of michaelhyatt.com

7. Turn Off Your Mobile Phone

You don’t have to turn off your mobile phone the whole day, but if you have important things plotted out within the day, it is better to avoid any distractions. A peek at Facebook or Instagram is a distraction that needs to be avoided. Unless you need to call someone really important, turn your phone off.

8. Avoid Checking Facebook and Email Every 5 Minutes

With the onset of smartphones and wireless connectivity, almost everyone is glued to their Facebook account or checking their email. It’s like checking out your fridge every 10 minutes, even if you know that the contents are still the same. It’s a time waster. If you’re in a middle of doing something important, lay off on Facebook for a while.

Image courtesy of www.lifehack.org

Image courtesy of www.lifehack.org

9. Define And Know Your Boundaries

You don’t have to say yes to everyone or anything. Learn to say no or perhaps learn to say that you’ll check things out first. This will give you the needed time to know whatever they are asking. It can also give the time to make an informed decision on every request that you’re getting.

10. Make Your Day Offs Blank

Your off days should not involve anything that is related to work or any appointment that is not fun. If you have to do anything important, it should be a hobby or a fun activity. If you bring your work at home, you will feel burned out and will not fully enjoy your off days.

Image courtesy of www.quickmeme.com

Image courtesy of www.quickmeme.com

11. Cancel Meetings

If you have the power to do so, cancel a meeting or two. If it is not that important and an email can suffice, then send those emails. It will save you 30 minutes on non essential meetings.

12. Do The Most Important Tasks First

Do the important things first because it will be easier for you to do the easy things later. Plus, you need all the energy and concentration on the important tasks to finish it. If you do it the other way around, you will not have the energy to finish the hard ones.

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Image courtesy of chucklesnetwork.com

13. Track Your Time

Keep a time log to know how much of your time is spent on the right tasks and how much is lost on unimportant activities. This information is useful to keep you on track and eliminate any distractions. It will also serve as a somewhat progress report on any tasks that need to be done.

14. Expect The Unexpected

There are times when unexpected stuff can happen. Do not commit yourself with very tight schedules because it may be hard for you to adjust to any unplanned happenings. Leave some buffers for the unexpected.

Image courtesy of beta.diylol.com

Image courtesy of beta.diylol.com

15. Get Straight To The Point

Some long or slow conversations may be handy at times, but if you are on a schedule, get straight to the point. Minimize the chit chat and ask what needs to be done, but do it in a nice way.

16. Take A Break

If there is too much getting in your head while doing some work, take breaks. A much needed breather will help you reset and think things over. If it is possible, take a power nap. 15-30 minute power is very helpful in refreshing your brain and body. It will also help you re-focus on the tasks at hand. You’re not a robot. Take some rest.

Image courtesy of virtualhiredhand.com

Image courtesy of virtualhiredhand.com

17. Prioritize And Leave Work On Time

If you have finished all your work by 5pm, leave the office on time. If you have not finished a task by the end of the day, do it first thing tomorrow morning. Because most people are really occupied at work, they forget the most important things in life like family and friends. But we’re not saying to do less work. Prioritize and make things happen.

Time is valuable, thus things that need to be done should be prioritized. But there should also be balance. Do not let yourself be at the mercy of time and the clock, you have a life to enjoy. Cheers.

About Author

Jon specialises in research and content creation for content marketing campaigns. He’s worked on campaigns for some of Australia's largest brands including across Technology, Cloud Computing, Renewable energy and Corporate event management. He’s an avid scooterist and musician.