Best Time Management Techniques I Have Learnt So Far
Well, first things first. I am not a lifestyle and management guru peddling life improvement techniques. Neither do I use and implement these techniques in my life effectively. I do not have stories and anecdotes to prove how these techniques can and will change your lives if implemented correctly. These are just some tips I have collected from several sources. I would love to follow them myself and here I am compiling them in a single blog. As they say, write something and you will remember it better. So that’s that.
With that out of the system, let’s talk about the real thing. I have always wondered, why is time management so necessary? I mean, we all know what to do when. We get up in the morning, brush, shave and get ready for work. Slug it out in the office till evening, come back home to some entertainment or household chores. Grab a dinner, watch some TV and sleep. Sooo simple. Why do we need to complicate this with some guidelines? I mean we all know when to pay the credit card or electricity bills right?
Well as it turned out for me, it is really not that simple after all. At least not if you have other interests or hobbies. Getting into a daily boring routine is easy. But if you want to do new things like learn a new technology or language, join a class, start a personal venture or go out hiking etc, you need to have solid time management skills in place to back you up. Because routines are a vicious cycle. When everything is good, they run like well oiled machines. But as soon as something falls out of place, the whole cycle gets disoriented. So whenever you are taking up new activities, you must manage the time for everything beforehand so that your routine can stay intact.
Some best time management techniques I have found so far are as follows. None of them are absolute and some of them completely differ from one another. I, however, would love to implement a combination of more than one so that I can get the best of the both worlds and remove the negative points altogether.
1) The first one is of course the most common and well known one. It says that set aside a time for every activity at the start of the week. Set down using a paper and pen during the Sunday evening and prepare the list of things you have do till next Saturday. Prioritize each, set aside time for each and roll away. Stick to this list no matter what or every other job gets affected. Now this is a terrific solution except for the facts that:
a) We can have N number of unforeseen jobs coming up over the week. Each time they do, you have to adjust your calender.
b) Previously existing jobs can take more time than initially estimated.
c) We can fall sick, have a flat tire, have a nazgul attack, a visit from Voldemort etc.
2) Second is the one I like the best. It says don’t bother with detailed plans and such. Yeah you should keep tab of the important meetings and stuff but no more than that. Do everything as and when they come, without wasting time. In the office and work comes? DO it right then. Working on something else? Finish it and then do it. Of course we still need to prioritize work but at a very basic level, not extensively. I believe this will help me have more time on my hand than the first strategy.
3) This one might be effective but not exactly up my alley. It says, work hard now and enjoy later. Or as they say, “Delayed Gratification”. It says spend all the available time in taking care of more important stuff and play when you finally have nothing to do and have some time left. Yeah like I would love playing video games after I retire. Well, I might but I am not taking that chance.
4) All techniques stress on maintaining a diary or calender though. Basic or extensive does not matter. As long as you are jotting down down the important things and consulting the diary often, it should be fine.
I have the bad habit of relying on my memory too much. I do have a good memory and it has not failed me much so far but this is a habit I need to let go of. I am going to start to implement a combination of the first and second technique from today itself. I will later share with you all how it is going. In the mean time, you might take a step as well.