June 1, 2017 11:05 am

As a society, we glorify “staying busy.” We typically associate business with hard work and success, but oftentimes it leads to anxiety and feeling frazzled and worn out instead of achieving something. Instead, we should prioritize better time management – the ability to use one’s time effectively or productively, especially at work. The idea is to work smarter, not harder, and finish the day with a sense of accomplishment and a few important items checked off your to-do list. Check out our tips on how to better manage your time.

Get Lots of Sleep

One of the best ways to feel prepped and ready for the day is to get enough sleep. Most experts recommend that adults get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night. During sleep, our bodies and minds reset and prepare for the next day. Without uninterrupted, quality sleep, you’re going into your day not feeling your best, which can affect your time management and productivity as the day wears on and you get tired.

Multiple Calendars

Keeping track of your activities and to-do lists in your phone is great, but it is also helpful to have a physical copy as a reminder. Try hanging up a dry erase calendar in a place that you see frequently, like a home office or in a hallway. You’ll be able to write down important date reminders and keep track of your to-do lists. This physical calendar and list will be a helpful reminder to keep you on track.

Order Your Tasks

When creating a to-do list, keep in mind which items are most important to you and your goals. Put those items at the top of your list. These tasks may be more difficult or time consuming, but you’ll also feel better knowing you completed the most essential tasks.

Block Off Time for Specific Tasks

Instead of deciding that you’re going to do work from 12:30 – 1:00 and from 3:00 – 4:00, specify that from 12:30 to 1:00 you’re going to be working on your marketing strategy and from 3:00 – 4:00 you’re going to be working on your business plan. This way, you create a clear path for yourself and have a game plan going into your work sessions.

Devote All Focus to the Task at Hand

Turn off your phone. Yeah, you read that right. Turn off your phone. Unless you have a conference call scheduled or something similar, your phone is not going to be helpful, it’s going to be distracting. If you need to use the internet, get on an actual computer – the lack of apps will be less distracting. Better yet, if you can avoid all electronics, like during a brainstorming session, get out a paper and pencil and do it the old fashioned way. It can be easy to open Facebook or check email if you’re on your phone or another electronic device, but if you limit electronic use you can better manage your time and stay focused.

Utilize Waiting Time

You know those times when you’re just waiting around for something, twiddling your thumbs or playing on your phone? Maybe you’re on the subway, in the waiting room at the doctor’s office, or in a big line at the store? This would be the perfect time to dedicate your thoughts to your invention. Answer some emails, review documents, or jot down some ideas you have. By taking advantage of all possible time, you’ll be more productive.

Time management isn’t about the glorification of “busy” – it’s about making the most of the time you have by completing important tasks. By being mindful of the way you’re managing your time, you can feel a sense of fulfillment because you are getting more done.

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