How many times in a day do you find yourself asking yourself “Where did the time go?” Let’s face it, we could all use a little help achieving our goals and improving our productivity. The key to doing this is to figure out what you want and make a list of your priorities.
With the fast-paced lifestyle we all lead, it’s no wonder you can’t find any time for yourself or to do the things that are important to you. You seem to spend all day doing for others, that at the end of the day, you have no energy or time left in the day to do anything for yourself.
Tip #1: Ask Yourself What Do I Want To Accomplish?
Whether it is today, next month or this year. You need to set a goal. A long-term goal is essential, but also include steps you need to achieve that goal. This way, you not only have small goals to help monitor your progress and motivate yourself with your achievements, but you also have a built-in way of knowing that you’ve thought in depth about what you’re doing and are acting wisely. These small goals will also keep you on track in reaching your bigger goal.
Tip #2: Now Create Your “To Do” List To Reach Your Goals
Once you have your steps, turn them into to-do lists. It may helpful to have not only daily lists, but weekly and monthly ones as well.
Another trick that might be helpful when prioritizing your goals is create a list of activities you do daily, committees and/or organizations you are currently active and participate in. Compare that list with your “to do” list for reaching these goals and decide if there are activities that can be eliminated to make more time for you to reach your goals! You may find things that can be delegated to a Virtual Assistant or maybe even your children.
Tip #3: Stick To It
Once you’ve set your priorities and made your to do lists, you need to stick with it. Sure, if things change, you may need to do some tweaking here and there, but you put a lot of thought into your lists and you need to trust your own judgment. If you keep backtracking and re-prioritizing, you’re never going to get anything done.
For most of us, it is generally easiest to make a list and then pick and choose which things we’d like to do off the list. The problem with this is that something you like doing more may not be as urgent, and the more important items will be put off until the last minute when you absolutely have to get them done.
A better way to look at your list, is pick the one thing that you’re dreading doing. Sure, it might take you a while to get it done, but once you do, you’ll not only be less likely to procrastinate, you’ll also have a sense of accomplishment and momentum to get through the rest of your work.
Tip #4: Be Realistic About Your Time
A key part of time management is being realistic. Many people think that if they set lofty goals, they’ll get that extra push from the perceived time crunch and actually meet them. The truth is, if you set unrealistic goals, you’re rarely going to meet them. If you continue to not meet your goals, you’re going to become discouraged and actually lower productivity and work quality.
One of the most important steps in time management is taking responsibility for your actions and how you manage what you do during your days. When we fail to meet a deadline, many of us blame it on other things, like a distracting co-worker or a great show that was on TV. This leads us to believe there is nothing we can do about meeting deadlines, which just isn’t true. You need to own your own time. If you don’t meet a deadline, figure out what you did wrong and what you can do better next time to fix it.
With a little effort and a lot of conviction, you can stick with your plans and achieve your goals.
Tip #5: Learn To Say “No”
I know sometimes it’s just easier to say “yes” to all the requests, but if you want to reach your goals the most important things is you are going to learn to have to say “no”. Set boundaries when needed to help you stay on track in what you need to get done to meet your goals.
Tip #6: Keep Your Goals Visible
What is a vision board? A vision board is a collage of pictures, phrases, words or items that represent you and your goals. Vision boards are for inspiration; think of it as a vision of the future. These goals can be long-term or short-term. By seeing these images on a daily basis, you will keep the motivation to reach for those goals and dreams.
I have also created a vision board on Pinterest if this may help you get started. Check it out:
Do you have a vision board? Will you be creating your vision board today?