Time management is a big concern for a lot of people. I keep hearing, “There are just not enough hours in the day…” or “Where does my time go?” Face it we all live busy lives. Work, family, and other commitments keep us all hopping. To utilize better time management, it’s important to recognize what the specific problems are. Is it not having enough time for you or your family? Maybe you are not sure where all your time is going and just want to account for it.
Or you could have a full schedule that you are having a hard time keeping up with. Whatever the reason, time is a precious resource that most of us need to use to its fullest.
The most important step in time management is evaluating our schedules. On a sheet of paper write up a “typical” week for you, by looking at your current schedule you will be able to identify places where better time management could be used. Ask yourself why you are feeling unsatisfied with your schedule? Make a list of what you want to change and what you want to make room for. Do you want more time to pursue interests? More time to be with your children? Or just more time to get everything done?
After you have done this take a piece of paper and draw three columns. In the first column put a list of all appointments, events, or commitments that are “set in stone”, things that take place at a set time and happen daily, weekly or monthly. Such as work, club meetings, or standing doctor’s appointments. In the second column put “flexible” tasks or commitments that can be done around your “set in stone” commitments, such as grocery shopping, house cleaning, or having lunch with a friend. In the third column put those “occasional” appointments, doctor appointments, a school play, or an old friend coming into town (or anything that does not fall into the other two columns).
Then using a calendar (preferably one with large spaces for the days) Or use a notebook and label each page a day or two (depending on how much you are trying to accomplish daily or weekly.) Start putting in the items from your three columns, starting with the items that are “set in stone” then the items that are occasional, leave the “flexible” items to last since you are able to put them in around the other things.