How do you make the most of your time? What are the best ways to save time and get more done? I regularly challenge myself to see how I can make the best use of the 5 or so hours I have available on a typical workday. I often review my schedule, rearrange a few things and try different methods. I’m always interested to hear what others are doing and what works for them.
Here are a few ideas that I have read or heard about and examples of what I have found works for me that you might like to try:
1. Dedicate an entire day to one specific action. Tim Ferriss, author of The 4 Hour Work Week says that this is one of his keys to success. He avoids breaking up days into tasks. For example, Monday is for going through emails, Tuesday is research and writing for new products and so on. This way, he can focus on one particular task per day and improve his performance on each task.
2. Allocate blocks of time to selected tasks. Similar to Tim Ferriss, I have found that it is best not to break up the day too much. However, it’s not always possible to devote an entire day to one task. Larger blocks of time will accomplish more. A couple of hours a day dedicated to one task twice a week is more effective than four 30 minute sessions a week.
3. Never break away to answer the phone or read an email. If you’re working on a task and are distracted, it takes about 20 minutes to get back to where you left off.
4. Spend a day alone, away from customers and clients. Commit one day per week on a regular basis to work on your business. This can consist of record keeping, scheduling, managing emails, writing articles, ezine creation, blog posts, business training/learning new skills or product creation and using your expertise to create alternate streams of income. When done on a regular basis you have plans in place, no lost time looking for documents and ongoing business building activities.
And last but not least…
5. Schedule in an appointment with yourself. My yoga instructor told me about a colleague of hers, an alternative health care practitioner, who schedules in a fake client each week. Her fake client is actually her ‘me’ time and she finds that she must schedule this time in order for it to happen. And as far as her assistant knows, she is booked and will not take any other clients during that time slot. Don’t just value yourself by what you’re doing. Take the time to recharge and take care of yourself.
To build a strong business and truly achieve success there’s no need to rush around feeling stressed. Your time is the most important resource you have. Just manage your time well, don’t become addicted to ‘doing’ and take time for yourself.
What time saving steps do you take to get more done and stay on track?