In this article I’m going to share some simple time management tips that will help you take control of your time and help you work smarter, not harder. If you never seem to have enough time, or you feel busy but not productive, these time management tips will help you take control of your days and move confidently towards achieving your goals.
There are numerous hacks and tricks to help you manage your time, but these time management tips will ensure you plan, action manage your day so you can get to the end of each day feeling satisfied and productive. Developing good time management skills will help to manage time well so you can remove distractions and stay focused and productive all day long.
Using these time management tips will show you how to prioritise and be more productive, and how to stop wasting time on activities that aren’t productive, and don’t move you closer towards your goals. Learning tips to manage your time better will be extremely rewarding in the long run, and help you achieve bigger and better goals in the short-term.
This article will give you 8 time management tips to super boost your productivity and get more of the important things done each day. Let’s jump in.
What is time management?
Time management is the key to success in business and life. Good time management means taking control of your time through effective goal setting, better prioritisation and working on a small number of important activities. Time management skills help you set better short-term goals and control how much time you spend on the most important activities you need to undertake to achieve your goals. We all develop our own time management systems, but the ones that work help you identify your most important work and help you organise and plan your time to focus more time on that work.
What is effective time management?
Good time management allows you to achieve bigger and better results in less time by doing more of the work you love to do. Effective time management helps you improve your focus, reduce stress and help you be more productive every day. Using your time effectively means you can choose where to spend your time and where to focus your time. The purpose of time management is to help you achieve more and get more done in less time.
Time management is about using proven time management techniques to create time leverage to create bigger results without the overwhelm or stress.
Why is time management so important?
Knowing how to manage your time properly is important as it helps you to prioritise and structure your time in a way that you can be more focused and productive on your most important activities. Effective time management is the effective use of your time that allows you to focus on your biggest strengths, maximise your biggest opportunities and eliminate the work that doesn’t move you closer to your goals.
With the right time management tips, which I’ll share below, you will experience a lot of the benefits of of good time management such as greater productivity, greater creativity, greater focus and more time freedom to spend with the people that matter most.
Easy time management tips to work smarter, not harder
Here are 8 time management tips to help you manage time effectively so you can work smarter, not harder. f
1. Manage your time through better goal setting
Having long-term goals and short-term goals helps you manage time better. You know where to spend your time as you have identified your biggest priorities which ensures you manage time effectively instead of drifting, losing focus and getting distracted.
By creating clarity on where you are now and where you want to get to it becomes much easier to focus time on the high value activities that will help you achieve your goals.
It also gives you a clear plan and path to help you schedule your time each day to avoid busyness and procrastination.
2. Focus on high value activities first
Your time is limited so it’s essential to tackle your biggest priorities first. If you are busy without being productive, it’s easy to lose control of your time and spend most of your time reacting. Instead of tackling easy or low value activities first thing, identify your three biggest priorities and work on them first.
This will help you manage your time better and move from being busy to being productive every day. Take some time in the morning or the night before to identify your three most important tasks so you start each day in a productive mindset, knowing exactly what to do and where to focus your time.
3. Track your time
If you want to learn how to manage your time effectively, the first step is to understand where your time is going right now. Many of us have a sense of where we think our time goes, but the reality is often very different. Start by tracking your time for one working week and in half-hour (ideal) or hour intervals, from when you get up to when you stop working.
Once you have a clear picture of how you actually spend your time, the next step is to get clear on whether you’re happy with how you’re spending your time, or not. If you want to better manage your time, look at the things you want to do more of and the things you’d like to do less of.
Then pick a time frame for how you want your time to be used in the future. 90 days is a good starting point but you may want to set a 30-day time management goal. Next, lay out 3 things from your list you want to do more of and 3 things you want to do less of, and write an action plan on how to achieve it.
4. Work in blocks of time
Good time management is hard if you are constantly distracted or spend a lot of your time multi-tasking. If you want to manage your time better start using time blocking to stay focused and productive.
Time blocking will help you work in chunks of time on your priority projects, and stop you switching between tasks or projects.
Many people use the pomodoro technique to help with time blocking. I personally work on the 60/60/30 principle, working in chunks of 50 minutes, then taking a 10-minute break for the first two chunks of time before then taking 30 minute break to read, walk or meditate.
Time blocking will help you stay focused and productive and give you a real sense of accomplishment when you make real progress on your important projects.
5. Look after yourself
Good time management helps you to work smarter, not harder, so that you can be more effective and productive. Good time management requires an important shift in focus from worrying about time spent, to a focus on achieving a specific result. It’s difficult to manage your time properly if you feel fatigued, exhausted or tired all the time.
Effective time management is about working in a peak state on activities you love to do and are great at. To ensure you remain in that peak state, it’s important to eat healthily, take regular exercise and sleep better at night.
Taking more time out of work on a regular basis will also ensure you are rejuvenated, motivated and productive.
6. Simplify your to-do list
Good time management at work is about the quality of work you do, not the quantity. If you focus on doing lots of tasks you will likely be very busy, but not productive. Spending long hours on an ever expanding to-do list is not the most effective way to manage your time. There is a better way.
Start each day with just three items on your to-do list. If you’re able to complete those three items by the end of the day you’ll feel productive and accomplished. If you still have time in your day to tackle additional priorities, add another item to your to-do list.
This way you will always be making progress and feel confident about what you’ve achieved. If you have 15 items on your to-do list and you fail to achieve them, you’ll feel very different. Focus on a small number of important tasks each day to be way more happy and productive.
7. Plan your time better
If you can plan your time effectively you have a better chance of being productive and managing time wisely. There are a number of proven strategies you can use to plan your time, that I use as a time management coach.
When you plan your time out it helps you schedule your time each week and each day. This gives you direction and focus and reduces the chance of distraction, overwhelm and multi-taking.
Two great times to schedule your time for the following week are on Friday and Sunday. Both these days are at the end of the week so you get a clear sense of what you achieved that week which can lay the foundation for what you want to achieve the following week. You also feel more relaxed on a Friday afternoon or Sunday evening so you have more clarity, instead of being busy and unable to think clearly.
To amplify your time planning, at the end of every day take 5 minutes to note down what you achieved that day and then lay out three things you want to achieve the following day.
8. Stop procrastinating
When we procrastinate we waste precious time. If you want to manage your time better, the key is to stop procrastinating and start taking action on your most important activities. We often procrastinate when we have too much going on or we don’t know what action step to take first.
To stop procrastinating, get clear on the result you want to achieve and then lay out the obstacle that is stopping you from taking action. Then outline the first action step you can take to overcome that obstacles. You may be able to do this, or you may require help from someone else. Learn more tips and tools on how to stop procrastinating.
Time management is essential if you want to achieve your goals in business and life. Use these time management tips to help you manage your time better, increase your focus and become more productive.
Now I’d love to hear from you.
What’s your number one time management tip?
How do you get out of busyness?
Let me know in the comments.
About the Author
Get more articles, tips and tools to help you manage your time effectively on the blog.
Sign up to my Time For What Matters newsletter to get even more time management and productivity tips and tools.