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Time management is the ability to plan your time effectively in order to become more productive. It is a skill that people have sought for centuries. William Penn once said, "Time is what we want most, but what we use worst." According to the University of Kent Careers Advisory Service, time management "helps balance the conflicting demands of time," such as work, studies, leisure time and family.
The To-Do List
Using a to-do list helps to remind you of what needs to be accomplished. To-do lists are running lists of every task you need to complete. Break large tasks down into smaller tasks and check each one off the list as you complete it. According to the Career Advisory Center of Kent University, a to-do list helps you feel more in control, stay focused and saves you time.
Develop a Routine
Creating a daily schedule helps you to focus on the task at hand. Start by logging everything you do for a week. Once you know how you currently use your time, develop a daily schedule but allow for flexibility. According to The University of Kansas Medical Center, allowing for the unexpected can help reduce stress.
How much time do you spend on trivial or unimportant tasks? Learn to spend time on what is important and differentiate between important and urgent. According to Kent University, working hard is not always the same as working effectively. Sort projects based on importance and complete the most essential first.
A goal helps to focus energy on accomplishment. Without knowing what you want, it is impossible to achieve it. Think about what you want to accomplish and write it down. List the final outcome and each step needed to make it a reality.
Break Down Large Projects
Each project we complete is comprised of many steps. When you break large projects into steps, you gain a sense of accomplishment as each portion of the job is finished. Kent University suggests being as specific as possible when writing down each step and completing each portion of the task before moving on to the next.
Procrastination causes stress and can affect your ability to do well in your job. Putting off tasks until the last moment can lead to substandard or unfinished work. According to the University of North Carolina, people often procrastinate out of fear. One suggestion for overcoming procrastination is to set reasonable time limits for your project. Once the time limit has been reached, take a break, review your project and reward yourself for what you have accomplished.
Based in Pottstown, Penn., Eileen Bailey has been writing health and business articles since 1997. She is the author of "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Adult ADHD" and her articles have appeared in numerous regional parenting magazines. Bailey studied business administration at Mansfield University.