Time is money is a true adage in today’s world. In this perspective it becomes necessary for people to manage their time properly. Here are a few tips that I found were very useful to me.
- Try to follow a general timetable at least for regular things like sleeping, eating and time at work. You don’t need to stick to the letter, but have a general understanding for e.g. Generally have lunch between 1:00 and 1:30.
- At the start of each day give a few minutes thought to the days activities. Try to plan out an itinerary for the day. My observations are that most people know the various activities they have to do in a day, but don’t plan how to go about it and hence spend more time and energy in it than what is actually required.
- Always keep some time in the day free for yourself. That is very necessary to regroup and recharge yourself.
- Another tip which I have seen is very useful is a short mid noon nap of around 20 minutes. This has been shown to increase productivity by 20% in post noon sessions in a study undertaken by Japanese companies. Although, this might be difficult to achieve in the traditional Indian work culture, if possible go for it.
- I find it very convenient to keep a cushion of at least half an hour between appointments, just in case we are held up either due ot the extension of the previous appointment or due to other reasons like travel.
- Another practice that I have seen particularly in the IT industry is that people working late nights trying to solve some problem. While this might be okay occasionally, but on the long term it would be counter productive both to your performance and to your health. So you are better off calling it a day and starting afresh the next day.
- Use of tools like Calendar or Post its to keep track of your activities is also helpful. In fact, it today’s mobile world, it can be easily used to set reminders to keep you on track.
- At the end of the week or month, it might be a good idea to summarize and see what you set out to do over the week and what you achieved and what were the reasons for the delay. That would help you to manage your time better in future.
While following these tips will give you that half an hour more than that you needed in your life, there is one more thing that you should follow. Be punctual to your appointments. Value other’s time. Their time is also at least as valuable to them as yours is to you.