Our time and energy are the most important assets we have in life. Time management is the process of managing your time through planning, organising, and leveraging how you use your time between specific tasks and activities.
The benefits of good time management are simple. Good time management enables you to work smarter, nor harder so you can get more done in less time, even when you feel you don’t have enough time.
Time management helps you prioritise your tasks ensuring you have enough time to get more of your important work done each day.
Managing your time is important because it helps you become more effective, rather than efficient, with your time. If you feel like you don’t have enough time, better time management increases your time, energy, and focus. As a result, you can be less busy and more productive.
Developing time management skills can help you reduce stress, procrastination, and overwhelm. Good time management skills will make you more productive, helping you to manage your time and achieve bigger results. Time management is important if you have a lot going on so you can prioritise what matters and achieve your goals faster.
In this article, you’ll learn the importance of time management and get 8 time management tips to manage your time effectively.
Read also: 10 benefits of time management.
What is time management?
Time management is the process of planning and organising how you utilise your time between your most important activities. Good time management enables you to take control of your time, even when you feel there isn’t enough time in the day. Effective time management enables you to work smarter, not harder helping you can achieve your desired results in less time.
By effectively planning and organising your time, you will stay focused on your most important tasks. As a result, you can eliminate distractions and overwhelm and manage the time you have productively.
To help you manage your time effectively download my FREE Daily Productivity Planner to help you work smarter, not harder DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE PRODUCTIVITY PLANNER
What is the purpose of time management?
The purpose of time management is to enable people to get more done in less time by working smarter, not harder. Good time management helps you achieve what you want faster and easier. Good time management enables you to stay focused and be more productive for longer.
The benefits of time management include less stress, greater productivity, more free time, and better planning. Managing your time will help you eliminate overwhelm and procrastination so you can capture bigger opportunities.
Time management tips to manage time effectively
Use these 8 time management tips to manage time effectively.
1. Create a time audit
Good time management starts with understanding where your time. You can’t manage your time better if you don’t know where your time is going. Many of us have a sense of where we think our time goes, but the reality is often very different. The key to better time management starts creating a time audit. A time audit allows you to track your time over a week so you can get a better idea of how you’re spending your time.
A time audit allows you to examine how you spend your time so you can develop strategies to spend your time better in the future. To improve how you 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 goal for how you want to manage your time in the future.
2. Set a time limit to complete a task
You can improve your time management skills by organising your time and setting a time limit for each task. Parkinson’s Law states that “work expands to fill the time available for its completion”.
It’s easy to let time run away with you and spend longer than you should on tasks and activities. To manage your time better, set a time limit for the work you’re doing. If you allocate a specific amount of time for a project ensure you finish within that timeframe.
The amount of time you allocate to complete a task influences the amount of time the task takes to complete. With your next task, set a shorter time limit and see if you can complete it within that timeframe. You may be able to complete that task quicker than you anticipated.
3. Prioritise your time
Prioritising your most important activities is key to successful time management. Prioritisation gives you clarity on what is important to help you achieve your goals, and what is not. It is important to identify and focus on your priorities to achieve bigger results in less time.
If you have a long to-do list, it’s difficult to take control of your time. Good time management is about simplifying your to-do list, which frees up more time. You simplify by prioritising your most important work.
Once you know how to prioritise your tasks and your time, you can manage your time effectively. Prioritising your time ensures you allocate sufficient time to complete your most important work. Good time management enables you to identify your biggest priorities and helps you plan and organise your time effectively between those priorities.
Read my guide to managing time effectively.
4. Focus time on results
One of the biggest challenges people face with managing their time is being busy without being productive. When you struggle to manage your time you can feel busy yet unaccomplished.
Good time management stops you from getting to the end of the day asking yourself “Did I accomplish anything today?”
Managing your time enables you to focus your time on achieving results rather than worrying about the time you’re spending. When you focus on results, you’re always looking for the quickest and easiest way to achieve that result, which frees up time.
Don’t get to the end of the day with lots of unfinished tasks. Focus on the results you want to achieve and look at ways to leverage time to achieve them.
5. Focus on one task at a time
Good time management can stop you from feeling stressed and overwhelmed. Overwhelm happens when you have too much to do and too many things to think about.
The first step to managing your time better is to reduce your to-do list. Do this by cutting back your to-do list to only three to five priorities each day. Then, once you have a reduced to-do list, focus on one task at a time until completed. Read my guide on how to prioritise your time.
6. Set better goals
Better time management starts with having better goals. Setting goals clarifies your direction and destination which enables you to prioritise better and improve how you manage your time.
It’s difficult to take focused action, and manage your time if you aren’t clear on your goals and what the best use of your time is. When you are clear on your goals the importance of managing your time effectively becomes much simpler.
Worrying about where you should spend your time and on what projects and people can be time-consuming. Once you have the clarity and confidence around your goals, you’re ready to take more focused action. As a result, you’re more in control of your time and more productive.
Instead of staring blankly at your to-do list wondering what to tackle you will have a clear plan and path ahead of you. This keeps you focused and energised and ensures you don’t waste time questioning what you should do next. Read my essential guide to goal setting.
7. Spend more time using your strengths
Good time management starts with spending more time doing activities that utilise your biggest strengths and less time on activities that don’t. It’s easy to waste hours, days, or even weeks doing activities that you may not be good at, and would be better being done by someone else.
When you know your biggest strengths it allows you to delegate, which lets you focus on completing your most important and relevant work, which helps you achieve your goals.
When you can manage your time well you are more productive and more creative. As a result, your performance and productivity improve. Managing time well requires an important shift in focus from activities to results. The quickest way to achieve results is to focus more time on your strengths.
8. Protect your time
Good time management means protecting your time so you can focus on a small number of things that produce bigger and better results. You can’t manage your time effectively if you feel constantly feeling tired, stressed, frustrated and fatigued.
To stay productive and control your time, taking time out to rejuvenate and energise ensures you are always at peak productivity and creativity levels. Working longer and longer hours doesn’t make you more productive. Good time management helps you protect your time by prioritising your goals and most important work.
Setting better boundaries around your time enables you to focus your time on your most important activities, which helps you achieve more in less time by being clearer, more energised, and more focused. Protect your time by planning your week in advance. Use my tips to plan a successful week.
Failing to manage time means a lot of time wasted which you can never get back. Good time management skills open a world of possibilities to produce much bigger results at work and have more time for the people that matter at home.
By managing your time better, you can expect to be more confident and effective at the things that matter most. By learning how to manage time effectively you’ll feel more energised and productive, which translates into living fully and trying exciting things in the freed-up time you’ve found in your day.
Now I’d love to hear form you.
How do you manage your time effectively to get more done?
Let me know in the comments.
Time management articles
About the Author
Get more articles, tips and tools to help you improve your time management skills so you can simplify your time to multiply your results on the blog.
Sign up to my Time For What Matters newsletter to get even more tips on how to manage time effectively.