If you could recall, I wrote a blog post (A Reality Check on Time Management) last month concerning time management techniques and tips. After finishing that post and rewatching the video a couple times, I managed to apply some of the techniques into my daily life. Today’s post will be highlighting the results and outcomes of some of the tips and tricks that was mentioned in the video. I’m still not the best at time management, but hey, at least I’m better than I was last month.
So here’s a refresher of the 10 techniques to effective time management:
- Carry a schedule to record your thoughts, conversations, and activities
- Any activity or conversation that’s important to your success should have a time assigned to it.
- Plan to spend at least 50 percent of your time engaged in the thoughts, activities, and conversations that produce most of your results.
- Schedule time for interruptions.
- Take the first 30 minutes of every day to plan your day.
- Take five minutes before every call and task to decide what result you want to attain.
- Put up a “Do not disturb” sign when you HAVE to get work done.
- Practice NOT answering your phone/texts and replying to e-mails.
- Block out other distractions like social media.
- Remember that it’s impossible to get everything done.
Within a month, I was not able to perfect all ten, but I am still currently working on it, but out of all ten, I’ve manage to incorporate 2,4,8, and 9 into my daily schedule to better manage my time.
To jumpstart, I’ll be talking about 2 and 4 while saving 8 and 9 for later. Before I ran across the video, I had never assigned time to anything that was important to me. I mean, I would have small time blocks set off for things I needed to do, but nothing fancy like assigning time to important matters. You see, there’s a difference between “assigning time” and “setting time blocks”. The difference is that when you assign time, you are more inclined to get things done and be more productive, but when you set “time blocks” you are only setting free time with yourself which can lead to many distractions during this time. This correlates to number 4 because you always have to be prepared to have interruptions (or distractions) throughout your day. Though you may have time assigned to certain tasks or conversations, you’ll for sure have things that will distract or interrupt you during the process. Anyway, as I was saying, I’ve applied these two concepts to my daily schedules and it’s been quite effective. By having time assigned to important tasks and duties and preparing for interruptions, I’ve been able to really prioritize what I need to do and keep me in check. For example, lately I’ve been thinking about what to do after graduation, and so by assigning 30 minutes – 1 hour to talk to my advisors and faculty, it’s really help me have a general idea what I might want to do upon finishing my degree. In addition, as an executive board member for Asian Pacific American Association, I’ve had to assign office hours for myself to get things done for the organization.
The biggest distraction that all of us students have is checking our social media and emails. At first, it was quite difficult to not check and reply to my emails and texts. The urge to reply instantly is a common thing for our generation. In order to rid this urge, I closed all extraneous tabs that I didn’t need so that I could fully focus on my work. Another thing I did was to silence my phone. The notifications I receive for Facebook, Snapchat, and text messages was a huge distraction and would always stray me away from my work. So by doing this, it really helped me block out all forms of distractions and interruptions like email and social media.
Overall, I am still polishing my time management skills in order to effectively get my work done. For me, there is never enough time to accomplish everything in a course of a day and I’m sure it’s the same for everyone as well. Through time, I’ll continue to work on these time management techniques to eventually master the art of time managing, but until then the art of procrastination still holds strong. Thanks for tuning in for this week’s blog post, folks. Be safe, fun, and carefree as you enjoy Spring Break! Stay gold folks!