So many of us seem to feel there aren’t enough hours in the day to accomplish everything we want or need to do, despite the increasing sophistication of labour-saving devices.
And so we start thinking that we need to manage our time better. But when you think about it, you can’t really manage time at all – all you can do is manage yourself better and prioritise the demands on your time.
As always, knowing yourself, your preferences, your strengths and weaknesses, is the best start. Start looking a little more objectively at the way you work – what do you do promptly? What do you keep putting off? Which parts of the job do you enjoy and which are a drag?
What is your best time of day – do you breeze into the office before everyone else, keen to crack on, or is it a struggle to do anything before coffee time? Do you like to stay late in the office, when you can catch up without being interrupted by phone calls and visits?
You might like to keep a diary of your days, divided into quarter hour chunks, and record how you are actually spending your time. It is easy to overlook all those chats with colleagues, the coffee-making when stuck for an idea, the surfing on the internet. You may be surprised by where your time is going!
Once you are aware of your habits, you can start to think about changing them for more productive, and enjoyable, ways of using your time and managing your workload.
Enough for now – I’m off to make a coffee!
Andy Britnell specialises in sales and customer service training for both the private and public sectors. My website is at http://andybritnell.co.uk/ where you can sign up for my FREE monthly newsletter Grow and Learn.
Also available - FREE e-mail coaching on becoming more successful by understanding yourself and others.