When it comes to time and maximizing on time there is definitely no known formula. However, from experience and research I can confidently say I have discovered how to make the most of my 24 hours of the day without feeling like I am missing something.
Too often we look at what we have to achieve during the day and it all seems too much. By the end of the day we feel exhausted and demoralized especially if we did not achieve what we intended to. This feeling will be passed on into the next day and we will begin on a low note and when we are also not able to complete the tasks allocated to us during that day we will eventually feel overwhelmed and ready to give up.
To keep this from happening, it is important to take note of some things so as to increase our daily productivity or maintain it. Listed below are some tips I found to be very helpful.
Daily Productivity Tips
To combat feelings of being overwhelmed, break down your goal into digestible and doable activities:
1. Start with a clear vision.
2. Break the vision down into spokes.
3. Develop a group of activities to accomplish each spoke.
4. List no more than six activities that directly relate to a spoke.
5. For maximum result, make the list the night before.
6. Block out at least one hour for income-generating activities. Turn off your BlackBerry and avoid checking e-mail during that time.
7. Roll over unfinished business to the next day, and do that first.
When applied this tips are very helpful because not only do they assist you in making the most of your time by allocating time to the activities you have planned but they also enable you to see what you have achieved in that day and possibly evaluate your productivity level. For instance, if you are constantly pushing activities into the next day and they are a lot of them then maybe you are exerting yourself too much or planning too many activities in a day and you need to reduce them or spread them out evenly during the course of the week.
While planning for your daily activities may be effective, the process may be hampered by other things such as lack of concentration inadequate time allocation and every day unexpected surprises. As much as we can try to predict and multi task we can often fall short. Here are some pointers I found quite useful in deterring any distraction and will often keep you focused while carrying out your daily activities.
1. Take the first 30 minutes of every day to plan your day. Don’t start your day until you complete your time plan. The most important time of your day is the time you schedule to schedule time.
2. Any activity or conversation that’s important to your success should have a time assigned to it. To-do lists get longer and longer to the point where they’re unworkable. Appointment books work. Schedule appointments with yourself and create time blocks for high-priority thoughts, conversations, and actions. Schedule when they will begin and end. Have the discipline to keep these appointments.
3. Carry a schedule and record all your thoughts, conversations and activities for a week. This will help you understand how much you can get done during the course of a day and where your precious moments are going. You’ll see how much time is actually spent producing results and how much time is wasted on unproductive thoughts, conversations and actions.
4. Schedule time for interruptions. Plan time to be pulled away from what you’re doing. Take, for instance, the concept of having “office hours.” Isn’t “office hours” another way of saying “planned interruptions?”
5. Plan to spend at least 50 percent of your time engaged in the thoughts, activities and conversations that produce most of your results.
6. Take five minutes before every call and task to decide what result you want to attain. This will help you know what success looks like before you start. And it will also slow time down. Take five minutes after each call and activity to determine whether your desired result was achieved. If not, what was missing? How do you put what’s missing in your next call or activity?
7. Put up a “Do not disturb” sign when you absolutely have to get work done.
8. Block out other distractions like Facebook and other forms of social media unless you use these tools to generate business.
9. Practice not answering the phone just because it’s ringing and e-mails just because they show up. Disconnect instant messaging. Don’t instantly give people your attention unless it’s absolutely crucial in your business to offer an immediate human response. Instead, schedule a time to answer email and return phone calls.
10. Remember that it’s impossible to get everything done. Also remember that odds are good that 20 percent of your thoughts, conversations and activities produce 80 percent of your results.
All in all when it comes to time management it’s all about focus and concentration.