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Who else wants to improve poor time management?
When it comes to scheduling your work and business responsibility, some women mistakenly think it’s just a technical issue of fitting enough tasks into your day. But the reality is, your success might be hampered because of your mindset related to your schedule.
Think about how you schedule things when you’re feeling intimidated or overwhelmed. You probably choose tasks that are less daunting and which offer some comfort and stress relief over profit-pulling tasks. However, even if a bit more difficult, money making tasks should be prioritized.
You need to get your head on straight when mapping out the timeline of each day so that you’re tackling your schedule with strength. You want to make sure you’re not overworking yourself or avoiding things.
Poor Time Management Affects Your Mindset and Productivity
As a career professional and female entrepreneur, there’s a lot of stress in making sure you’re accomplishing everything you need to do in a day. But you’re not just a career professional and entrepreneur, either – you’re a human being with a life outside of work.
You might be a spouse or parent, or even a caregiver to an older family member. You may have any number of commitments that are outside of your career. All of this needs to be handled, and yet you only have 24 hours in a day. Learning how to get better at time management is essential
What happens when you drop the ball and your day ends without you being able to get everything done? You probably beat yourself up. Your goal was to cross off your entire to-do list, but it just didn’t happen.
You were most likely never taught time management. Without knowing how to master your schedule, it’s hard to instinctively know how much time everything will take or hoe to get better at time management. You may struggle to figure out when things should be done, and if you’re doing something wrong.
Beware of Outside Influences!
Some women don’t just beat themselves up, but have outside influences piling on the pressure, too. For example, if you focused on work all day but failed to do the laundry, your spouse might complain because you were “home all day.”
You need to know how to balance the needs of your career, your business with your personal life. Start by using printable calendars that you can make multiple copies of for each area of your life.
For example, you might download this month’s calendar from http://www.pdfcalendar.com/monthly for free and print one for each business branch, one for cleaning your home, another for parenting duties, and so on.
It’s important as you travel on your professional journey that you take time to do things right and make good decisions. But while slowing down to properly handle things is beneficial, you don’t want to slow so much that your productivity grinds to a halt.
Having everything methodically mapped out with schedules helps speed things up. You won’t have to sit down after every task and think about what you should do next or what needs to be done. Once you improve poor time management with god planning you just glance at your calendar and you know.
How to Get Good Time Management Skills
If you’re used to working in time crunch situations, that often stems from a lack of organization in your work and life schedule. You need a strategic plan to knock out your tasks that includes things like work, cleaning, health, and more.
This means you break down every step. Don’t keep it broad. If you have a calendar that simply says “work on email marketing” that’s too big of a step to accomplish. Instead, have each email listed, such as “email 1, email 2, email 3,” and so on.
As time goes on, you’ll begin to know how long tasks take you. If writing an email takes you 15 minutes, and you have a slot of 45 minutes open in your day, you’ll see that you can fit in 3 emails during that time.
Avoid These Poor Time Management Traps
Some people make mistakes whenever they start trying to manage their time. For example, making a schedule is great! But not being flexible with it is destructive. This is especially true if you have kids or are a caregiver or even dealing with your own health issues.
Some things can’t be put on an exact schedule. For instance, if you have 1 P.M. to 2 P.M. mapped out for business, and your baby starts crying you’ll need to stop what you are doing. She may need to be fed or changed, so you’ll have to handle parenting tasks without allowing it to stress or derail you.
Some women blame their schedule chaos on the fact that they’re working on multiple projects or business branches. But that isn’t the issue. The problem is not having it mapped out and not figuring out how to get better at time management.
You can work on as many projects as you want, as long as you fit it into your 24-hour day. Are you the type who makes excuses about getting side-tracked with other things when you’re supposed to be working?
You need to be truthful when this happens. It’s not an issue of getting sidetracked. The correct verbiage is, “I abandoned the task I was working on to do something else.” If you wanted to do something else, you should have worked it into your schedule.
How to Get Better with Time Management
Think like a boss. If your boss told you to complete project A, but two hours later he stops by your office and sees you quit working on it to work on project B instead because you felt like it, it probably wouldn’t go over very well.
You need to stay committed to your task list. Some people procrastinate on their work schedule by excusing it – saying something like, “I’m horrible at focusing, so I end up wasting time.”
No, that’s not the truth. You’re choosing to allow yourself to be distracted. Take personal responsibility for your actions. Everyone would love to stop work and read a magazine or scroll through Facebook or watch Netflix, but they choose to work instead.
Get your priorities straight. You have customer and clients. You have a business where people rely on you for guidance and help. Additionally, you may have a family to support and every time you pretend to have a focus problem, you’re letting them down – and yourself.
If you use excuses like that, such as “I’m horrible at focusing,” then get unhorrible at it. Learn how to improve poor time management and supercharge your productivity. Improve yourself. Read tips on how to focus better. Try new ways of doing things. Demand better from yourself, but never just accept it and use it as a crutch to procrastinate.
How to Eradicate Poor Time Management When Self- Employed
If you work for yourself, make sure you understand and embrace the drawbacks of when it comes to time management. You might work any and all hours to get things done. You’ll log on at 3 A.M. to Facebook and see several marketing friends working on their business, too.
While this gives you some freedom, such as being able to work when the family is asleep, it can lure you in to a situation where you become a workaholic and never schedule any down time for yourself or to spend with others.
Once you map out a good schedule for your work and personal life, reinforce it daily until it becomes second nature for you. You want to know that every day, you’ll queue up an email, handle carpool, answer customer service questions, do the laundry, relax and unwind, research your niche, and so on.
Some people excuse their lack of time management by saying they get bored easily. Not all parts of any career are exciting. It’s a childlike excuse, because there’s a time for recess and there’s a time for work.
If you need to, work fun things into your daily routine. But don’t use boredom as a reason why you’re unable to cross tasks off your list. If there are things you truly can’t stand doing, delegate or outsource it to others.
Manage Your Time Better in Personal Matters Too
This isn’t just about your work and business, by the way. If you want more time to enjoy life, and you hate cleaning the house, then budget for a cleaning service to help out. Alternatively, you can delegate the chores to other family members to lighten your load.
You can find new ways of doing things as you learn how to improve poor time management. For example, if you have a long commute to and from your child’s school, use a dictation tool to capture what you’re speaking out loud.
You might be able to write (by speaking) a 5-page report on a one hour round trip drive. Then when you get home, send the file to your computer, clean it up and your tasks is complete!
Make sure you work on tightening up your schedule. Give things up if you have to. Learn to say no to things you don’t want to do. Sometimes this is uncomfortable, but you have to reclaim ownership over the hours in your day.
Or, if cleaning your house seems to take forever, look at tips from people like FlyLady online who teaches quick housecleaning. That way you learn not only earn how to get better at time management, but also how to maximize your efforts and do more in less time when it comes to keeping your home nice and tidy.
Work hard when you can – when you have the energy and extra time – so that when things in life are not optimal for you, you have that cushion of extra time to fall back on and get things done.
Tune Up Your Weekly Schedule Management Skills Too!
Start with a schedule for the upcoming work week. If you are self employed, you get to choose whether you work Monday through Friday or take other days of the week off. You might also only work 3-4 days, as opposed to five.
Whatever your schedule is, create one where you’re not overloading yourself and leaving some cushion for emergencies of unexpected issues that may arise as you navigate the creation of a schedule that works best for you.
You want to periodically tweak your schedule, at least weekly in the beginning. You’re going to tune it up by seeing where you can shave time off your schedule. Think about what tasks can be delegated or outsourced.
Ask yourself which tasks you can learn to do faster, and then figure out how you’ll learn to do it. Maybe there’s a YouTube video to teach you or a cheap course you can download.
You want to tighten it up until everything is running smoothly like clockwork so that you don’t have that nagging feeling that you could be doing better. You want to not only have your task list prioritized, but also the way you feel about it.
Break Down Every Project For Effective Time Management
Before you can adequately map out the perfect schedule, you need to take the time to list each project on your plate and exactly what all goes into it. You don’t want your calendar to just say Project A.
You want it to have specific tasks laid out so you know exactly when it’ll be completed. If you just write Project A on your calendar, and you have a deadline, you won’t have a way to ensure you’ll have it done in time.
Take your printable calendar and fill it out so that your tasks are all accounted for and the project is completed on time. Remember to work in emergencies or changes of plans just in case.
Make sure your schedule is pretty sparse in the beginning. As you learn hoe to get better at time management and master the ability to handle the minimum task list, you can confidently add more to your plate. But you don’t want to have to suffer the guilt and shame of removing things because you don’t feel capable of handling your to do list.
Create a Birds-Eye Schedule
It’s important that you have one set of calendars for every list task on your to do list, but also a general overview or birds-eye schedule that shows how much you’re completing every month, quarter and year.
You need to match your goals to your schedule and make sure it’s doable. You might overburden yourself. On the other hand, you might do the complete opposite and not give yourself enough work to accomplish.
You don’t want to go too easy on yourself if you have goals such as increasing your income. On the overview schedule, have major completion of project events, as well as major family or personal events – but not the minor day-to-day tasks.
Ensure you’re meeting your work goals, but also take a look and see if you’re nurturing your personal and family life enough. You’re looking for a healthy balance between the two.
If you want to get better at time management, you really have to stop allowing yourself to make excuses, prioritize tasks that will earn you more, and tweak it for the best results as you go. Don’t try to copy anyone else’s schedule because no two people will have identical lives.
You want to be flexible, yet committed to your time management plan. Your goal is productivity without overwhelm, based on planning and analysis of your abilities. You can learn how to get better at time management and maximize the time you have in each and every day.