If you find yourself constantly playing catch-up, running late, or generally find life is running you and you are not running your life – then STOP catch your breath and take control.
There are some very simple steps you need to take – and one very important rule you need to adhere to. “Invoke the rule of self-discipline”
You also need to recognise that if you “do what you have always done – then you will get what you always have”. I know it sounds corny – but it is so true.
One essential ingredient to taking control of your time is to get in the habit of forward planning. This is where the self-discipline comes in.
I can hear you inwardly groaning “I have not got time to think about tomorrow – I am too busy thinking and sorting out today.” Well getting into the habit of taking a few minutes each day thinking about what (you know), you will be doing in the next few day will help with all the stuff that comes along you don’t know about. And the self -discipline to do it each day no matter what, will help you not just save time but help you recognise where your time pressure points are. You can then adapt, reschedule or prepare.
Forward planning is just a habit – the five minutes you spend writing lists or getting organised for tomorrow can save heaps of time in the long run as well much unwanted stress. It is just a question of taking time out of today to take a look at what is coming over the horizon tomorrow.
Don’t procrastinate! Don’t wait until you are falling asleep tonight to plan tomorrow. Do as much planning as you can the evening or day before.
It may not be your entire life solution, but it will definitely help when you are under pressure. You will be more prepared, in control of events and less stressed (and probably less irritable with those around you).
Here are some very simple examples of forward planning.
Have you checked the following – as these are just the sort of simple things can create a difficult start to a day:
- Have you got cash for a car park/train/ bus
- Is there fuel in the car
- Do you know what you plan to wear tomorrow?
- Do you know where the house keys / car keys are(my own nemesis)
- Prepared for all the next day meetings / events
If you are still struggling with time keeping ask yourself
- What can you do differently
- What are the flash points
- Get buy-in from the family or co-workers so you all manage your time better
Try some of these time management tips
Adopt a tight and consistent schedule. Routines will soon become second nature and you will do them without a second thought.
- Have a clock in every room.
- Set the clocks a few minutes fast.
- In your diary mark your appointments a few minutes early
- Set your mobile for 15 minute/ 30 minute intervals to keep you on schedule.
- Build slack and travel time into your schedule
- Be realistic about timings or what you can achieve in any given amounts of time>