Welcome back to week #2 of our Time Management Series. How did you do on setting goals from last week? If you missed Week 1, you can catch up at Time Management Made Easy – Setting Goals. Did you dig down and set some good goals for yourself? Did you discover some things you didn’t know you even wanted to do?
When I set out to write my goals, I sure did! I hadn’t given much thought to speaking one day until I started considering my goals for the next 5 years. I just wrote it down and thought “where did that come from?!”
Now that you have your goals down, let’s move on to the next step in our series (but keep your goals handy. We’ll need them for next week.)
I’ve got some really simple tricks up my sleeve that will make life so much simpler for you.
Do you ever find yourself trying to clean off your desk, when you get an email that needs to be answered, and then you hear a notification from Facebook or Instagram so you pop over there to answer that and then, oh yeah, 40 minutes later you get back to cleaning off your desk? All day, every day….right?
In order to manage our time better, we need to work smarter.
So what can we do with all these interruptions in a day? I have a very simple solution for you. Something that I started doing at the beginning of the year and it has completely changed the way I work, both personally and professionally.
Our mind can focus on any given task for 90 minutes at a time. Anything over that and we have difficulty concentrating, our mind begins to wander. Having this knowledge is huge! Instead of working against it, we can work with it.
Here is how Time Blocking works:
- Break everything needed to be done into tasks
- Designate how much time you will give each task
- Set a timer.
Here is the important part: set your phone aside and turn off all social media. Yep, you read that correctly! Focus solely on the task at hand for the entire time allotted.
Once the timer goes off, take a break! Use this time to take a quick walk, grab a snack, move some laundry around, and change the scenery a little. I know it’s tempting to keep on working, but I promise that you’ll be able to clear your mind and be more productive when you come back.
After your break, go back to that same task, if necessary, or move on to the next one.
Have a huge stack of magazines to go through? How about those important papers that need to be scanned? Medical bills that need to be filed? And oh….my…..goodness… all those emails that you’ve been meaning to get through!!!!
Time blocking is the easiest and most efficient way to reduce clutter. Set aside 60 minutes every day until that monstrous task has been completed and then all you’ll need is 30 minutes once a day or perhaps only several times a week (depending on your inbox) to keep it under control! How incredible will it feel to have tackled that feat?!
Speaking of getting emails under control, now is the perfect time to completely revamp your inbox. Go in and unsubscribe to those emails that you no longer wish to receive.
You can follow most of them on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. Some of them even have apps that you can download on your smartphone instead of getting emails. There will be some emails that you’re going to want to keep, so look at them closely before you unsubscribe. We’re talking about Time Management, so for the others, it’s time to cut them loose.
I realize that it may mean unsubscribing to my emails and I would truly hate to see you go, but seriously, the most important thing to me right now is to make sure that YOU are getting what you need. If unsubscribing to my emails will help to make your life more manageable, then by gosh, that’s exactly what you need to do!
Time Blocking is also a great way to teach yourself to become quicker at tasks. For instance, one of the jobs that I do for Footprints on Inspiration is to schedule all my social media. This has taken up a lot of time in the past. I’ve been working on cutting that time down. So each week I shave 5 minutes off my allotted time so that I can teach myself to become quicker. You can do the same for any of the jobs that you have.
Want to become quicker at cleaning? Set aside less time each day or week for it. On my cleaning days, I allow two hours for cleaning. Whatever gets cleaned in two hours is cleaned. Anything that doesn’t, waits until the next time I clean. Now I must confess, I don’t clean very often, therefore, I bust my hump in those two hours so that I can accomplish as much as possible.
Time Blocking works great for Social Media as well. No more getting sucked into hours of social media without even realizing it!
You will be amazed at what you can accomplish in a day and how much more time you have by sticking to this method.
So, my friends, I challenge you to spend this week Time Blocking your tasks. I guarantee you will be more productive and have more time to enjoy the things you like to do!
Do you have a great Time Management Tip you’d like to share? Post it in the comments section below.
Be sure to meet me back here next week where we’ll wrap up our Time Management Series with some more great strategies for a more productive you. Ready to move on now? Time Management Made Easy – Scheduling Your Day to Reach your Peak Performance.
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Until next time my friend…..
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