LET’S face it — time is probably our greatest resource. But we never seem to have enough of it, and it seems to pass so quickly. What we can do is make the most of the time we have.
Here are some simple steps you can take to get the most out of your day.
1. PLAN YOUR DAY THE NIGHT BEFORE
At the end of each day, write out all the things you need to do the following day to achieve your goals. Pull together all the information you will need, such as phone numbers and relevant paperwork.
2. PRIORITISE THE LIST
Number each item and do the difficult jobs first. There is always the temptation to do the easy jobs first. However, think about how the thought of doing the difficult jobs hangs over you as you do the easy stuff. Think how good you will feel when the tough tasks are out of the way, and how motivated you will feel.
3. STICK TO YOUR LIST
Tick off each item as you finish it, and do not let yourself be distracted. The temptation is to answer telephone calls and reply to e-mails as they come in. The phone is hard to ignore but you could always put it on silent mode or let it go to voice mail. Log off from your e-mail program. Make an agreement with yourself to check for messages every two hours or so.
4. REMEMBER THE THREE D’S
Do it, delegate it or dump it! Handle each piece of paper only once. Either do something about it now, delegate it to someone else or dump it in the trash. And remember, “Only do it if only you can do it.”
5. DON’T PROCRASTINATE
Procrastination really is the “thief of time”. It is so easy to put things off till another time or till you have had “time to think about it”. Make a commitment to “do it now”, whatever task “it” may be!
6. PLAN YOUR LEISURE TIME
Take up activities that need you to be at a certain place at a certain time. Instead of just going to the gym, book a fitness class or an appointment with a personal trainer. You are more likely not to skip your exercise and you will get more out of it with some expert help.
7. BE HONEST WITH YOURSELF
Keep asking, “Is what I’m doing now getting me to where I want to get to?”. If the answer is “no”, you need to change what you are doing.
If you commit to making these seven steps a way of life, you will get more out of your day and your life.