Professional Contractors: Make the most of your 24 hours!Posted Tuesday, April 2, 2019
24 hours that’s all we have in every day. Nobody gets any more than that, yet some people seem to achieve a lot more than others. Here’s some tips to help you get the most out of your 24 hours.
Complete a time analysis
Look at how you’re currently spending your time. You might believe you are sending 30 mins on emails but in reality checking emails may be taking up an hour or more of your day.
Set a time limit for each task
Setting limits on tasks focuses the mind. It allows you play a game with yourself, great for those with a competitive spirit to beat the clock. Also great for the perfectionist as it limits the time consumed seeking perfection. If you have spare time you can go back over a task to make it better if you feel you have to!
One of the worst things that you can do is wake-up without a plan for the day. Instead of focusing on what needs to be done, you wander aimlessly and take care of more trivial matters. So plan ahead using one of these options;
The night before: Before you leave work for the day, spend the last 15-minutes organizing your office and composing a list of your most important items for tomorrow.
First thing in the morning: Write down the 3 or 4 most urgent and important matters that need to be addressed today and work on those when you’re most productive.
Eat the biggest Frog First
Mark Twain once said, “If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And If it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.”
Take care your biggest and most-challenging tasks in the morning, aka your most important tasks of the day.
There are a couple reasons why this such an effective time management trick. For starters, you usually have the most amount of energy in the morning. So it’s better to tackle these tasks when you’re not drained. Also, you can use that feeling of accomplishment to get through the rest of the day.
Learn to Delagate
For some it’s hard to let someone else do work that they used to do. For others, they don’t have the time to train someone else to complete certain tasks.
The thing is, delegating or outsourcing are real time-savers since it lessens your workload – which means you have more time to spend on more important tasks or doing less work. Either hand over responsibilities to team members who are qualified or hire an experienced freelancer.
Block out time and just focus on one thing at a time, set your phone to silent and do not be distracted by the need to check email and messages. Eliminating distractions and doing one thing at a time will allow you to complete each task in a more efficient manner.
Review your schedule
If you’re struggling with time management, the solution may be as simple as changing your schedule around. Think about getting up an hour earlier during the week. Perhaps getting up earlier at the weekends and reduce the time spent on social media or television. These small changes will give you extra time to complete the tasks you never find time to get to.
Take a Break
Going from one thing straight to another may seem like effective use of time. However the scientists tell us that the human brain can only focus for approx. 90 minutes at a time. We need time to clear our minds and recharge: go for a walk, meditate, or just daydreams for a short time between tasks, it will help you focus on the next task you have to face. Without that break it’s more difficult to stay focused and motivated.
Looking for things, keys, files, phones, numbers wastes your time. Get organized. Have a home for everything, keep your workspace clean and tidy, that includes your computer documents and files.
Follow the 80:20 Rule
“The Pareto Principle also known as the 80-20 rule suggests that 80% of results come from 20% of the effort put in. This can also be applied to the use of your time. 80% of your results comes from 20% of your actions.
Look at your to do list and focus on the items that will give you results. This will help you prioritise and identify the tasks that make the greatest contribution towards your success.
Learn to say NO!
It’s great to be helpful but it’s important to realise that you have your own priorities and if you don’t have time to help a colleague this time then you don’t have time. This applies to family requests and friend requests. Have a phase ready to give you some breathing space, “Leave it with me” is great it allows you think about whether you have resources available before you commit.
Don’t waste time waiting
Plan for times where waiting will occur. Have a few podcasts linned up or have some reading material available. Use the waiting time to do something constructive rather than getting frustrated.
Batch similar Tasks together
When you have related work, batch it together. Pick a time to go through emails or return phone calls. Doing similar jobs together saves time as you don’t have to make your brain switch gears.
Less is more
Do less, slow down, be aware of what needs to be done, and concentrating only on those things. Once you do, make every action count. As a result you’ll be creating more value.
Let Contracting PLUS take care of your administration needs. Remember as a Contractor with Contracting PLUS we can help you set up your company, handle your administration and we can assist you to file your personal or company tax returns saving you time to do the more important things on your list. Contact your Dedicated Account Manager today and see how they can help you get things done.