I’ve learned a lot about time management over the last year. It’s part of the leadership skills you need in order for your organization, or your life in general, to thrive. No matter your background or belief system, we all have one thing in common: 24 hours in a day. It amazes me that all of the “successful” people we think of have the same 24 hours as we do. They don’t get extra time or any guarantees about their lives, but yet they do extraordinary things. What did they do so differently to receive such a drastic outcome? Here are two reasons that successful people are, well, successful.
1. They recognize how they are spending their time. I can just about promise you that Oprah didn’t become Oprah by watching six hours of Buck Wild or HGTV everyday or constantly worrying about things that could, but don’t necessarily do happen. Now, I don’t know Oprah personally, but her success makes it evident that she understands and manages her time well. She doesn’t sit around and waste it; she embraces it. No amount of money can buy more time, so you have to accept and work with what you have. How do you spend your time? Log it one day (or even better, for a week) – every 30 minutes keep track of what you’re doing. Write it down. If you’re zoning out to TV, write it down. If you’re working on that life-long dream of writing a novel, note it on your log. If you spend 12 hours at work a day, write it down. Once you see where your time goes, you’ll start to gain the control over it again.
2. They make a list. Successful people list out their goals, agendas, etc. and time should not be any different. What do you every day? Every week? Every month? Every year? Make note of what you absolutely need to do (work, cook. clean, doctor’s visits) and what you would like to do as well (family time, learn to dance, paint). Here, you’re going to visualize what you would like for your life to look like and recognize what you do now. Chances are you will not have this compiled in one sitting – it will take some time. You’re basically taking an inventory of every aspect your life right now and what you would like for your life to become. When you realize that you can have time to do all that you love and what you need, you will understand that you control your time and not the other way around.
Let me make something really clear here: Managing your time is NOT the same thing as being controlling. You have to be flexible with your time management because life happens and it’s always unexpected. You can’t be so rigid in your plans that you forget to live life, which was the whole point of managing your time in the first place.
Time is one of those tricky things in life that you don’t realize is so precious until it’s too late. Start making the most of your time TODAY!!
What are some other ways you manage your time? Please share in the comments section below.
Don’t Lose Hope,