21 Ways To Manage Your Time Better Than Ever (2020) - Time Management

Time management
          What is the one thing that every human being on this planet has in common? TIME. We all have the same 24 hours a day, 365 days a year but despite having the same amount of time, we all live whole different phases of life than others. Some are living happily, some are rich, some are poor, some are devastated, some have boring lives, and so on. What do you think that made all these differences in our lives? It's how we spend and manage our time. In this 21st century, time management is an indispensable skill everyone should master to excel in life. Successful and rich people are those who mastered the art of time management efficiently. Worlds richest persons, successful CEOs, multimillionaires and you, all have the same amount of time. When they can do it, why can't you?

Let's dive right into the topic "21 Ways To Manage Your Time Better Than Ever-Time Management". 

1. Get a clear mind:

Get a clear mind
          As I always say, everything you want to do first should start in between your ears. When you're not mentally clear about what you want to do, you'll never do it better. You first need to decide in your mind and sow the seeds in your subconscious mind about what you want to do. Decide that you're no longer the lazy and unproductive person you once were, and now you're going to manage your time better than ever. 


2. Stop procrastination:

Procrastination makes easy things hard, hard things harder
          If you want to manage your time better than ever, stop procrastinating things. When you procrastinate things, they all get accumulated over time and become a burdensome task one day. Most importantly never ever delay doing things that you can do in a very small time. Doing these kinds of little things in time will motivate you to do better and big things fast. I've clearly described about the 2-minute rule earlier. Check it out.

3. Plan ahead:

Plan ahead
          In order to successfully master the time management, you need to start planning your day before even it begins. That means you have to plan the next day the night before you sleep. With this, by the time you wake up next morning you don't have to ponder what to do, you already have everything noted down when and what to do. This way you'll have more clarity and effectiveness in things you do.

4. Be an early bird:

Be an early bird
          Time management isn't all about the to-do lists or priority tasks, it starts with the second you wake up from the bed. Over the years, what I found is waking up earlier can bring an enormous change into your life. It gives a magical boost to your day so that you feel motivated throughout the day. One more biggest advantage of waking up early is, you're going to have more time in your hand. By the time everyone wakes up, you could have accomplished some of your tasks for the day.
          Let's say you sleep daily at 11pm in the night and wake up at 6am the next day, now you have 17 hours of the day in front of you at your dispense compared to when you wake up at 10am in the morning, you have just 13hours. That means you now have more time than before to use and increase your productivity.


5. Make a schedule:

Make schedule
          Making a schedule is the key to time management. Timetable each snapshot of your following day and obviously determine what to do at a particular time. Scheduling allows us to keep track of our time and helps to manage it better. Schedule everything from wake up to the bed, when to eat, when to work, when to have fun. In this way, you'll never waste your time on meaningless things. If we don't schedule we spend most of our valuable time on social media, video games, TikTok, etc

6. Prepare a To-do list:

          to-do list
          If there is one thing that makes time management easier than ever, that's having a to-do list or a schedule of things to do. Take some time off your day and note down all the tasks you have to do for the day and give it exact timings. When you keep timings, you work more efficiently to finish the task. Having a to-do list with timings specified for every task, and implementing them at the exact timings is what time management is all about.


7. Prioritize:

          As important as having a to-do list, prioritizing is also very important for effective time management. The last thing you want to do is stuck with a cumbersome task and waste a lot of time on it. Out of all the tasks you have, make a priority list, and act primarily on them and later the remaining.
Prioritize
The best way to determine what the priority tasks are is by making a classification as shown in the figure above. Now all you need to do is, do the important and urgent tasks first.

8. Use technology to your leverage:

          We use our mobile phone and laptop or other electronic gadgets every single day and every single hour. Why not take advantage of technology to have better time management. Use apps like Google Calendar, To-Do list or any other calendar apps to schedule your days. That way we can get a reminder or a notification about our next task to do. 
          I personally use Google Calendar to schedule my days. It's easy, simple, and very effective. I generally have all my things scheduled in the google calendar app. It always sends me a notification or shows on my home screen what to do next. Here's a screenshot of my home screen where you can see it is showing what I should do next.
Google calendar tips to be more productive

9. Avoid distractions:

Avoid distractions

          Distractions are the biggest enemies for your productivity and time management. Keep your workspace clean and don't keep anything on your workspace that triggers a distraction. Keep it simple and place only useful things for your work in the workspace. Abstain yourself from using social media or playing games on the phone when you're having a task to complete.


10. Say NO to multitasking:

No multitasking
         Most often people say we can save time by multitasking, which actually isn't. By multitasking, you will not focus on any one thing completely which reduces your productivity. Sometimes multitasking may lead to distractions too. For example, when you listen to music while you read, you never actually listen to music, it's just there that's it. If you really want to listen to music and read, it doesn't happen. When we do two things simultaneously, we tend to spend more time than they're done separately. So stop multitasking and focus on one thing to have better time management.


11. Take breaks:

Take short breaks
          Human brains are just like the machines we use, they do get stressed and malfunction when used relentlessly. Learn to take small breaks from tasks you do. As per some research, the human brain can focus continuously up to 2 hours, after which it needs a rest of a minimum of 20 minutes to focus clearly again. I recommend you to take short breaks like 5 minutes every 1 hour so that we don't feel overwhelmed working hong hours. Go drink some water, have a stretch, move your muscles, and make your body feel active.


12. Schedule buffer time too:

Buffer time
          Most of the time, we fail to accomplish a task within the stipulated time. It's quite common. There will always be some or the other external factors that we don't consider but will affect our results. Sometimes there may unexpected urgent things to do which comes in our way to do the thing we planned for. So, for that reason, it's wise to include buffer time too in your schedule for each task. In this way, you'll still be in control of your time and schedule even if any distractions or emergency things occur. Buffer time is nothing but the extra time we add than the required time. Considering cushion time as well, we can complete the vast majority of the errands according to the arrangement/plan. In this way, we can manage our time better.


13. Stay dedicated to your schedule:

Actions speak more than your words
          We all have heard of this saying at least once in our life. Everyone can make a schedule, it's just taking a piece of paper and jotting down some random things you have to do but not everyone who makes a schedule follows it. That's where the difference happens. It's easy to write things you have to do, but it's not that easy to follow up. But the one who stays true to his plan will never lose.


14. Start small:

Start small
          Okay! I know how hard it is to schedule a whole day and stick to the plan. You might be thinking to not go for it. But trust me, I've been there. I remember how badly I failed my first-day schedule in the first two hours itself. Then I realized, I started diving directly into the oceans before even I learned to swim. Then I started to do it small and then increase the dose. If you're new to time management or just starting out, I recommend you start small.
          Why not try with scheduling your meals the next day or a simple clean up of your room at a certain time? Just start small and go big with time.


15. Reward Yourself:

Reward yourself
          If you decided to learn time management, that's great. Most people don't do it. Go reward yourself for that first. We, humans, have a tendency to lose motivation after a certain time if we don't like the process, so, there should be some kind of push you need that provokes the adrenaline rush inside your veins to do more. Rewarding yourself for achieving small things will give you the motivation to do big. Reward yourself with your favorite food or play your favorite game or use social media for some time. Just give yourself that push of adrenaline, so that your subconscious mind thinks that I have to be productive to get these rewards and you use your time wisely to become more productive and master time management.


16. Limit your tasks:

Limit your tasks
          Time management is for making you feel productive and use your time wisely. The last thing you need is bombarding yourself with excessive tasks and feel tired at the end of the day. As mentioned in prioritizing rule first and foremost finish all the tasks that are important and urgent. You can do slow things that are not that important and not urgent. Don't treat yourself harshly in the pursuit of mastering time management. Limit the number of tasks per day and accomplish what you planned in time. 


17. Learn to say NO:

Learn to say No
          You prepare a to-do list, you prepare a schedule and start working on it. Then all of a sudden your friend pops up and says "Hey man! let's chill out". Say no. Don't disturb your schedule. Your time is precious. Instead, meet him after finishing all of your tasks and then have fun and chill out. Say no to anything that distracts you. If that thing is really important to you, include it in your schedule the next time you plan.


18. It's okay not to be perfect:

It's okay not to be perfect
          Don't stress yourself for small details, keep the big picture in mind. Don't try too much to become a perfectionist at everything, just give your best at everything. It's completely okay not to be perfect at everything you do. We learn from mistakes and grow.


19. Plan your actions too:

          What is the best way to complete a task with less time or inside the stipulated time? When we have a clear idea of what and how to do the specific task we do it fast. If you don't have an idea in mind how to do it, you're gonna waste so much time thinking than doing. So, I suggest you plan your actions too for your tasks.


20. Don't forget to have fun:

have fun
          Every once in a while just turn off your work brain and have fun. There will always be days where you have less work or no work at all. Do fun activities at that time and be more than just a work machine. Everything is important in life, work, fun, family, and love. Spend time with people you love and do whatever that makes you happy and make your brain get rid of all the stress.

Also read How to live a happier life?


21. Get good sleep:

          Get good sleep
          Getting a good amount of sleep plays a major role in order to become more productive and have better time management. When you don't get enough sleep, your brain doesn't function up to it's best and you feel lethargic to do work and you postpone them which becomes more burden the next day. I personally experienced the effect of good sleep many times, when there are days I don't get enough sleep, most probably my whole day got ruined. So, have a good amount of sleep for at least 6 to 7 hours per day.

Well, it has been a long article and kudos to you for reading it till the end. Here's my bonus tip for you.


 Use waiting time:

 Use waiting time
         We all hate waiting. But the irony is waiting has become a part of our lives. We wait at coffee shops, at grocery stores, in traffic, etc. What if I told you we can use this waiting time for better time management than simply wasting time scrolling social media while we wait. Use it to listen to a podcast or do any simple tasks that we can do under 2 minutes like sending/replying an email, replying to your texts, making phone calls related to work, etc.

That's it for this article. I hope you find value in it and make you better at time management.

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