Three time-management mistakes you don’t know you’re making.

Does the whole idea of “time management” make you gag?  Join the crowd.

clock by deux-chi

There are a ton of clichés surrounding this topic, many of which actually have the potential to be very useful.  The problem is that, while we’ve been bludgeoned with them over and over, we’re rarely told how to implement them.

It’s time to change that by correcting mistakes you’re very likely making when it comes to (ACK!!  Hairball!) “time management.”

1.         Working in fits and starts.

One of the most effective ways to waste time and energy and sabotage your productivity is to endlessly start, stop, and re-start tasks.  Each time you step away from a task, you waste time reacquainting yourself with it when you finally get back to it (assuming you do get back to it).

Forget the fits and starts.  Instead, stick with the damn task until it’s done.  If that’s too overwhelming, set a timer and commit to working on the project for a short but intensely focused period of time.  Even one 15-minute stretch  of concentrated effort will put you way further ahead than tinkering with the task for a minute or two a dozen times a day.

2.         Caving in to the tyranny of the urgent.

Lots of things demand our attention: an incoming text, email, or phone call; a beep indicating a Facebook update; a piece of lint floating across our field of vision.  When some event occurs that has a “Handle me now!” quality to it, you’re probably often tempted to answer its siren call.

Don’t do it.

A terrific way to find yourself wondering, “What did I do all day?!” is to chase after all those urgent tasks.  Why is that such a problem?  Because the fact that they’re urgent doesn’t mean they’re important.  Will responding to that sorta-friend’s Facebook post grow your business? Will reading that text from your favorite restaurant?  If an urgent task doesn’t also have a significant impact on your business, leave it alone.

3.         Playing it by ear.

Not knowing where you’re going to focus your time and attention is a surefire way to fritter away your productive hours.  Don’t wait to figure out what you’re going to do until you sit down at your desk.  Have your mission-critical tasks (two to four of them) identified the day before, so you’re clear on what you’ll be working on and how it will positively impact your business.

 

If all this makes sense but still sounds a bit challenging to implement, there’s a no-charge tool just waiting to help you tackle the right things in the right order.  Just use the box in the upper right corner of this page to request your own 5-step Take Action Now System™ to launch you on your way to increased productivity and dazzling results.

 

By the way, thanks to deux-chi for posting the clock image on Flickr.com.

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